By Edward Pojim via UAH forum
The number of Africans who are reported to have taken their own lives in the US, is rising by the day.
The latest are a Kenyan woman and a Tanzanian man.
The woman was reported to have jumped off the San Mateo Bridge, near San Francisco International Airport. Her body was recovered on Sunday morning. She had posted “disturbing” messages on social media, which had attracted the attention of her friends. But it was too late for them to reach her.
Then, on Sunday evening, a 30-year old Tanzanian man drove his car at a high speed and crashed it into a tree, in the city of Tracy, according to police. This young man was still mourning his father, who died about three months ago, in Oakland, CA.
At Stanford University, in Palo Alto, two Kenyan students took their lives last year. African online news service is awash with Africans killing themselves: in Boston, Atlanta, Houston, Denver, Philadelphia, and other places.
Please take the time and reach out to fellow Africans, especially the young fellows who are new to the western world.
Most of these youths had never lived away from their parents, and may feel alienated in the hustle of life in North America. Some get hooked on addictive substances, which impair their judgement and cause them shame, thus further pushing them away from friends who would be of help.
Adjusting to a new culture and clime can take a toll on a young person.
Whereas back home, we are surrounded by community – family, relatives, neighbors, etc – in the western world, you need appointment to visit a neighbor!
I always advise new arrivals that while US is a large country that offers endless opportunities, it’s also a lonely country where no one knows you. The idea of community services, to assist immigrants in their phases of adjustment, is already in place here. In the San Francisco Bay Area, we have the Harambee Society, which brings together Africans from East and Central Africa. They host monthly events for interaction, and names of society officials are distributed, in case someone needs support.
And then there are specific tribal organizations: The Luos, the Kikuyus and the Baganda, among the prominent ones.
This lady who jumped off the Bridge, belonged to the Kikuyu group, and was the immediate past Treasurer of that Harambee Society!