23 September 2013
Many of you are already aware that over this past weekend in Kenya, gunmen attacked a shopping center in Nairobi, taking hostages, killing many people, and wounding many more. The many images and stories that have come through the news outlets sadden us all within the OpenMRS community. I hope you’ll join me in sending thoughts and prayers to all of those affected by this tragedy, as well as family, friends, and those responding to the situation. It will take time to heal the wounds which occurred over the weekend, and our community stands together in support of those people in their time of need.
Despite the tragedy of the circumstance, in typical Kenyan fashion, it was heartening to see other images of Kenyans coming together to bring aid and comfort to their fellow citizens. Over the weekend, we saw people line up to assist in hospitals, people donating blood across Kenya, and compassion demonstrated by friends of Kenya around the world. It’s yet another reminder how strong we can be when we work together in a community.
Nearly a decade ago, my colleague Burke Mamlin and I first went to Kenya to help with a computer system for clinics in Eldoret. Those seeds planted in Kenya have grown into OpenMRS; and just like the acacia tree, its branches have spread very wide, helping to bring improved health care in every corner of the planet. While our community is diverse, we’ll never forget our roots in Kenya, and a piece of our heart will always remain there.
As the anthropologist Margaret Mead once said, “Never doubt that a small, group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” Let’s continue to stand together and make the world a better place for each other in the face of adversity.
Our thoughts go out to all of our friends and family within Kenya.
Project Leader, OpenMRS