chapter  8
Changing place, changing position: orphans’ movements in a community with high HIV/AIDS prevalence in western Kenya
ByERICK OTIENO NYAMBEDHA AND JENS AAGAARD-HANSEN
Pages 15

Omondi started to look for work opportunities within the locality in order to feed himself and his father, who was of no help whatsoever. Eventually, he joined other orphaned children within the area to form a saga, a group of boys who work collectively. As he continued to work for pay, Omondi carefully spent his money partly on buying foodstuffs and other basic needs, partly on purchasing what he needed to return to school. After a while, close members of Omondi’s patrilineal kin became concerned about his way of life, as it was not a traditional practice for such a young boy to be left to fend for himself when other adult relatives were around. A younger brother of his father’s, who had just returned from Nairobi, decided to take Omondi into his house, but this was against his wife’s wishes. By then Omondi had acquired the basic necessities for school (such as textbooks, a uniform and funds for school fees) and managed to go back to school. After some time in his uncle’s house, Omondi had to move out because his uncle’s wife did not want him living there. Omondi then contacted another paternal relative, a relatively rich, elderly man of his paternal grandfather’s generation. He agreed to take Omondi into his

house and even to pay for his schooling, provided that Omondi help with household chores. Omondi therefore ended up living in the home of a paternal relative who was a classificatory grandfather according to Luo kinship terminology.