2013 TRIP – July 19


Morning all!

It is day 7 and we’re on our way to Tanzania. It’s quite a long drive without much to do and so I thought I’d write a short diary entry.

We drove back to Nairobi yesterday after leaving Nakuru and spent the night at Indaba campsite. On the journey there we got our first chance to interact with some of the African kids and it was truly amazing. Playing peek-a-boo has never been so much fun and has never made anyone smile more than those kids did. It had the exact effect on myself and the group that I expected it to, an effect I remember very well from last time. The mood on the truck was boosted dramatically by that 5-10 minute interaction and I think it got everyone in the mindset for what is to come once we get to Tanzania.

The sights you see here (and we haven’t seen the worst of them yet) are still so thought provoking, awe inspiring and humbling. I still can’t get over the reaction you get from the children here when you give them a simple wave – a wave! If you did that to someone in the street back in Middlesbrough you’d probably get a different kind of hand gesture and no chance of a smile. If you want to learn a valuable lesson then come to Africa as you will see what truly matters. Not mobile phones, not what someone said about you on Facebook, not how many followers you have on Twitter but simply being a nice person.

Just getting near to the border now and then it’s on to Meserani Snake Park. I’ll say hello to Mrs Dog and have a drink for the 2011 group as well as a game of darts for the 2011 Africa lads: Joe, Dan, Tom, Joel and Ben.

Anyway! Speak soon and see you all in 16 days!

James x

P.S. Sophie Heward, you will not only be pleased that ‘If This Is It’ – Newton Faulkner has made another appearance on the trip playlist but ‘Mr Brightside’ – The Killers has too! I can almost hear Jordan Heaney’s cry of disgust at that last song, however, have no fear Jord! There’s a bit of Swedish House Mafia too so I’m still getting my daily dose of house music!


Amy Wilkinson 19.7.13

Good morning England, just a quick catch up so you know all my gossip J

Yesterday we went on an early morning game drive which was great as we got to see lions however, I found it pretty hard to keep my eyes open I’m also feeling slightly fragile today with a poorly head as I haven’t been sleeping the best but don’t worry a quick nap on Sarah’s legs will sort me out. We are driving to Tanzania today which means a full day of travelling but I know what is waiting for me when I get there, lots of fun and games with the gorgeous children I can t wait! Although we haven’t been to a school yet on our journeys yesterday two children spotted us whilst we were pulled over, within minutes there was up to twenty children all stood waving and giggling at us. I hung out the window and started dancing lots of little girls copied my every move with dads famous under the water boogie and spice girl’s moves J it gives me the same sort of thrill as what work does when the children are happy.

We have just had a toilet stop on the way to Tanzania and once again the children came to visit us, a little boy was holding his toy (a dead bird) and I had a great game of hive fives with a little girl roughly aged 3. They stood in amazement staring at us, I was in a bad mood up until that point but now I remember why I am here and I can honestly say just how much I love the feeling of being able to make them smile, giggle and just light up their day a little.

I hope Louise has a lovely last day at Pally park and don’t cry too much J

Missing you all lots and lots, love you even more.

See you in 16 days eeeek!!

Love Amy xoxoxoxoxo




Good afternoon home!! 
How are you all? I’m feeling loads better today J Last night was nice, I had my first hot shower (I’ve only had two in total, don’t judge me) and we just chilled in the bar before bed. Steph Crandon told me I was the spitting image of you mammy haha, miss you!! Hope you, dad and Lewis are all good.. Counting down to your jollies I bet! 
Last night’s sleep was the best I’ve had since being here, slept right through yay! My teddy is keeping me unreal company Daniel head J I always wake up thinking I’ve lost him though, when really he’s just wormed his way down to the bottom of my sleeping bag! It’s this weekend you have your plans for parties I’m sure, hope you have fun if your plans are still going ahead + I hope work has gave you decent shifts for both days! J Wish them both a happy birthday from me!  
We’ve just crossed the border from Kenya into Tanzania and stopped for some lunch I’m certainly not coming back skinny the food is too good and I’m eating cheese like there is no tomorrow! 
I’m so excited to get to the snake park! It’s going to be the best 2 weeks, can’t wait to meet the kids I’m linked with as well as meet the locals, visiting the orphanage and clinic! Jam packed couple of weeks but that’s how I like it J  
When we get to the schools the kids all come out and sing to us which is nice but you almost feel like you’re someone special or important but I’m definitely not! This year we’ve decided it’d be nice to return the favour (I’m definitely not getting a solo don’t worry) I couldn’t sing to save my life and it’ll be interesting to say the least but I know they’ll appreciate and enjoy it J  
OH, HAPPY BIRTHDAY for this weekend Paige Davies, hope you enjoy whatever you get up too! Hope you all have fun at Andrews BBQ if you’re still all going, missing you all see you soon! 
That’s it for now; we’re still on our way to Meserani another couple of hours I reckon J will have so much more to say once we get settled at the snake park! 
Write again soon, I love you all sooooo much!! 
Chlo xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx 
Abbi English

Hi home!

Sorry I never wrote yesterday. Hope you are all well, I’m having an amazing time and really enjoying myself, it’s so much better than I thought it would be! I’m currently on the truck (8 hours ish) driving to Tanzania. I’m looking forward to that more as I was getting bored of looking at animals. We went on a game drive the other day we seen some lions, white/black rhinos, baboons, hyenas and more zebras haha! Took loads of photos as well. I told you I was going to the market the other day, well that was as an experience in itself, me Ellie and Jess decided to walk round the market and we were harassed so much it was mad, and you know me I was really scared and literally grabbing on to Ellies arm.  I love the journeys on the truck, I literally stick my head out the windows and wave to everyone and near enough everyone waves back, it’s crazy! I‘m missing you all though, especially Megs and her dancing!! I would say it’ll be quieter round the house but I’m sure Mego will make up for it though! Hope Aud hasn’t been throwing herself around anymore! Also, tell granddad Ken he was right, I have burnt a little on my shoulders haha ooops. Hope grandma Barbara and grandad Peter are all okay! Weird not having you and dad moaning at me all the time Thank you soooo much for paying for this trip it’s so worth it and I’m absolutely loving it. Love and miss you lots your fave child Abbi xxxxxxxx

Also Soph before I forget, if you’re reading this I’m sorry for missing your birthday and hope you have/had a good day and got what you wanted we’ll go for a meal promise and have a good holiday xxxxx


GCAaron Jardine

Hello home, hope you are all okay, I am very tired because I had an almost sleepless night. I kept on turning and waking up and just was uncomfortable, but I hope tonight I get to catch up. We have literally just entered Tanzania (12:13pm), so we will now be here for the next 14 days. We will be staying at Meserani Snake Park for the next 5 days which should be nice, I am fine and am having so fun. Jacob, hope you have had a good last day at school and that you can now rest and wait for your big brother to come home! I can’t really remember which day Dad goes back offshore but I think it is Tuesday, hope you’re not missing me too much and also Nan is coming up as well isn’t she. So Jacob won’t be that bored when I am not there cooking his lunch and cleaning up after him! Anyway I have got an idea of what things I am going to get you all!

Lots of love xx


Sophie Burns

Hey hey, hope everyone okay. Sorry I finished early yesterday I went to get ice cream but there was not any I liked so I just got a chocolate bar. Currently I am on my way to the Snake Park which I’m excited for as we are staying there for 5 days so no packing up tents every day. I haven’t done granddads photos yet but I’m either going to do it soon or when I’m back in Kenya I’m waiting for a good spot, where he’d like. I’m doing great though and having a fantastic time but I have bites all over my arms and they are so sore and ugly – help me. Everyone is really nice and all getting along so that’s good. Also the truck driver/ chef Jason is so funny and I help him make cheese pasta last night haha.

Hope everything at homes going okay, and tell Rach I miss her. I’m really excited to go into the school now because we haven’t been any yet! Also just to let to know my stomach and everything is fine and no toilet problems yet (touch wood) so all good!

Well I better go because the truck is getting really bumpy now and I can’t type.

Love you all and see you soonish

p.s. hope work is going okay mam and you’ll have to try some of these African recipes when I’m home.

GDSophie Sidgwick

Hello home, hope everyone’s okay. So I woke up this morning and my bites have grown since yesterday, they’re massive and super itchy, I’ve taken a photo of them to show you when I home they are horrendous. Today we’re driving to Tanzania so nothing that interesting has happened really, we went through customs and stuff but it was pretty boring. We’ve just been playing games on the truck and singing and things. We’re doing a song to sing back to the children from the schools after they sing us their national anthem. My group which is Lisa is on duty today, in my group is Sarah, Kate, Ellie, Johnny and Chris, when we’re on duty it means that we have to help prepare meals and wash up afterwards as well as help to load up the truck and stuff. The jobs themselves are not too great but my group is the best one out of them all haha, Lisa has devised some fun games for us to play as a group that no one else knows about for example, if the word ‘antelope’ is said we all have to burst out laughing and pretend something is funny. Another game is that Lisa sets a word and we have to try and make David say it without saying it ourselves, so far we’ve had ‘eyebrows’ ‘unicorn’ ‘fishcake’ ‘fan’ and ‘jellybean’ I have the points from three of them, wooooo J.

Hope you’re all having a good time at home, love you loads xxxxxxx

Adella Prest; 
Jambo! I slept like a baby last night (didn’t have anything to do with the vodka cokes I was drinking). My tent bud was Jess Taylor; she’s so chatty and lovely! Once again I’m writing from the destroyer because as I mentioned yesterday, we’re travelling down to Tanzania. Super excited! We stopped off earlier for a toilet stop where we got chatting to some of the children in the area. I loved it! I got a few snaps too. This has made me even more excited to meet the ones in the schools. You’ll be glad to know I finally got a shower last night, not that it made a difference as I was dirty again within five minutes. Haha. I’m having so much fun out here and as much as I’m missing everyone, I don’t want it to end!  
Short one today! I’m sure I’ll have lots to write about tomorrow! Hope all is well. Lots of love, Dell x  
Ps- Soph, I doubt you’ll be reading this as you’ll probably now be busy busy busy but if you happen to come across this, hope all is well and I hope you and baby are doing good! Can’t wait to meet her! Give her a big kiss and cuddle from me, lots and lots of love xxxxxx


GEKate smith

Yesterday’s journey from one camp site to another, was my best experience so far! Although the bus broke down a small group of children saw us sitting there waiting for the truck to get fixed from up a small hill and were waving and shouting “how are you, how are you” I’m presuming that’s the only English they knew. It was so cute, and as word spread we were there the small group became a large group. The best bit was when we all laid on the floor of the truck and they shouted one two three and we all jumped up to the windows. They went absolutely crazy, dancing and lauging, it was adorable. Words cannot describe the feeling. Went to bed quite early last night because I was really tired, and was woke this morning at half  6 to begin out long journey to Tanzania, 6 hours if we’re lucky 8/9 hours if we have a faff on at the border,  god help me, already been to sleep for an hour and had hideous photos taken of me, so guess ill stay awake for the rest of the journey. Really missing family and Amy but having a fab time cant wait to come home and tell you all about it.


Jess Taylor

Hello again! So last night we camped at Indaba Campsite and for tea we had steak. As I was on duty I had to tenderise the steak and to do this I used a hammer with spikes on the end and it was really fun. Then after tea, Ellie and I went into the bar and bought some soda and watched the game of pool. I couldn’t stop laughing the whole night because there was a dog and it kept coming over and making me jump and I nearly spilled my Fanta. After that we went to sleep and I was sharing a tent with Della and I saved both of our lives when I remembered that we hadn’t taken our tablets. This morning we packed up the truck yet again and set off on a 6-8 hour journey to Tanzania. I’m literally sooooo excited to go there and stay at the snake park J on the way we stopped to go to the toilet and as we got out of the truck there was these children waiting to speak to us. I went over to one and asked what their name was in Swahili and then told them mine. One of them was carrying a dead bird in their hands which made me sad as he probably didn’t know what to do with it. I’m glad we’re going to Tanzania now because as much as I love seeing all the animals I really can’t wait to meet all the children and see the look on their faces when we give them the pens and pencils. I’d just like to thank my parents for making all the sacrifices they have to be able to send me here as I’m having such a good time. Peter told us a story last night about the violence of 2007 in Nakuru and Kenya in general. My eyes welled up but I held it together. Some of the details made me feel sick as what happened to the people was dreadful. Everywhere was full of tension and it was all because of political parties. I’m going now as we’re about to cross the border into Tanzania!!! Exciting stuff!! Eeeeep see you guys soon, can’t wait to tell you about it. Byeee!!

Jess xxxxxx

GFAmy McMullan 

One great experience after the other! Yesterday, during our long journey, the truck broke down which initially we saw as a problem, but as you say everything happens for a reason. As we were waiting for the problem to be fixed we saw some children just over the road who were so excited by us waving to them. A few more children came and we shouted “jambo” to them and it was the best experience so far! We all laid down on the truck and counted to three before popping out the windows and shouting. The children got so excited and would wave and dance. It’s made me even more excited for going to the schools and meeting more and more people.

On the night we had macaroni cheese for tea, yum yum. We just chilled on the night and I was put in a tent with Demi. I had one of the best night’s sleep so far! This morning we began our journey into Tanzania which I knew would be long so I had a kip on the truck. Unfortunately some ugly photos were taken of me whilst I was snoozing but ah well. We saw some cute kids today also which was great and I got some more stamps in my passport. We’re all practicing ‘Lean On Me’ to sing to the children but other than that I’m just enjoying my trip and taking each day as it comes.  
I love you  all very much! (I don’t think I told Callum or Jordanne about the website so you may have to do that, no worries if you don’t though because I can tell you everything when I get back because I highly doubt I’ll forget a moment.) Amy 

Chris Gibson

Not really in the best of moods today especially as we are travelling for just about 8 hours. At least I can just sleep whilst on the bus (well once I’ve finished this). I think I’m going to read the letter again that Sophie written today as I think today is one of the best dates to do it whilst I’m here. No doubt I’ll probably cry since all last night and today I’ve just been thinking of her. Also been thinking of just home in general and being at home with everyone.

Anyway, we got up this morning and had to quickly pack up and pack our tents up before we got on the truck to travel. I think today I just have to hope it goes fast and I sleep all the way like the plane journey here. Last night and today we didn’t really do anything much so I currently can’t wait to get to Tanzania and go to schools. Hopefully when we do this that the days will stop dragging and start moving faster. I’ll write a diary every time I get a chance and hope they get uploaded. I hope you all aren’t missing me as much as I am with you. Love you all so much and I can’t wait to see you all again and be home xxx


GHChristopher Smith

Hello everybody, don’t be enjoying London without me too much!

Well today must be the most boring day yet, today is the day we drive to Meserani snake park in Tanzania so our travelling time is about 8 hours, stopping somewhere half way. The weather here has been great, mainly sunny at about 25 degrees but it feels much better because of the cool breeze, in the morning however it is freezing, its like being at home in October but it soon warms up. I do enjoy the long journeys as well, going through the country side and passing/ stopping in some of the small shanty villages waving at all the people and seeing them smiling, waving and having a great time just because ‘the Zulus’ are passing by. It is just like Peter said as it is like you are a celebrity to the locals, well most of them. J So last night was still fun and I got to watch a bit of the tennis on the tiny TV in the games room at Indaba camp in Nairobi. I have a collection of great photos and crazy videos to show you when I get back, my only disappointment about the photos is that each night at around 6pm, we seemed to be cursed by thick overcast, so we can’t see any of the clear sky I wished but maybe in Tanzania the nights may be better out in the bush. So our next stop will be Meserani snake park for 5 nights. Just at the border so speak soon … Love Christopher xxx


Abbie Lavender

Ok just a quick complaint that I need to get off my chest, today I haven’t been at my highest point, I am not unhappy just not my happiest, that is all. It seems that because I’m not smiling as much as the other days everyone seems to be asking me if I’m ok, but not the general kind, the kind as if I’m some sort of depressed. It is really annoying because I am fine I just don’t feel like smiling all day today, that isn’t much to ask! Right so this morning was an early start as we left Kenya to go to Tanzania and it is a long drive. I’m really quite excited as that is where we visit the schools which I am looking forward to the most! I have been sat next to Aaron on the bus journey and it has been good. We have just sorted out getting into Tanzania which was a bit of a faf with the passports but it has to be done. When we get there I suppose we will just set up our tents then have dinner as we will be getting there quite late or early evening. Also, apparently we are going to learn a song to sing on the coach, hmmm! Lots of love




Jambo hunz!

Today we are travelling to Meserani Snake Park to start the project work, which im super excited about! Today’s drive is about 8ish hours so that plenty of time to catch up on my sleep. Unfortunately some parts of the road aren’t the best so it’s a bit like a rollercoaster!


Adam Jefferson!

Helloo!! Today is not the most exciting day but it still is a good day with loads of fun in it! We’ve travelled 8 hours from Kenya to Tanzania as we are now staying in the snake park! Nothing much else is happening apart from learning a song to sing. Get in there!! Missing everyone and hope you’re all doing good!

Love always! X