#ClimateStory4Kids: Penda and the drought fairy

drought - climateaction

#ClimateStory4Kids: Penda and the drought fairy

Hello kids.

Welcome to #ClimateStory4Kids!

In today’s episode of #ClimateStory4Kids, we’ll tell a story of how Penda partnered with the drought fairy to teach his village a lesson about water conservation. We hope you enjoy it.

Penda was a teenage boy who lived with his grandpa in Gwashu village.

The village was endowed with resources and as such, boomed in every aspect.

However, the village had only one source of water, the Gulu stream, from which everyone got water, including the neighboring villages.

But there was a habit that the villagers had formed that didn’t sit right with Penda. It was the way they wasted water.

People would throw used water away without a care that it could be reused. To them, the stream was an endless source. Why should they conserve water? What was the worst that could happen? They thought to themselves.

Penda knew the importance of water and since his plea to the villagers to conserve water fell on deaf ears, he decided to teach them a lesson.

He set out very early in the morning into the forest. His mind was set on getting some itchy plants which he had discovered during one of his escapades, and pouring the plants into the stream. Surely, the villagers would

Penda was so deep in thought that he didn’t realize he had wandered far from his destination.

It was when he heard movement somewhere in the trees that he snapped back to reality.

“Who’s there?!”, questioned Penda.

There was a movement within the trees then a light insect emerged from it.

Wait. It isn’t an insect, thought Penda. It’s a fairy.

Penda couldn’t believe his eyes.

The drought fairy spoke from where it stood. “What are you looking for, young man?”

Penda told the drought fairy his plans but the drought fairy said it wasn’t necessary. It had a better idea.

The drought fairy would use its power to cause drought in the village.

So, Penda and the drought fairy made their way back to the village to carry out their plans. Penda was a bit uncertain it would work because it sounded crazy that he saw a fairy, to begin with, talk more of asking it to help him cause drought in his beloved village.

It was night when they got to the village and luckily for them, the villagers were already asleep.

Penda and the fairy went to the stream and the fairy said some magic words, striking its rod on the water in the stream. Before Penda’s eyes, the stream dried up. He gasped, amazed at what he had just seen.

He pleaded with the fairy to stay in the village for some days. His intention was to reverse the curse the moment the villagers learned their lesson.

The drought fairy agreed and Penda placed it in a jar and hid it the moment he got home. Morning came.

When the villagers woke up to resume their activities for the day, they met a dry patch of land where the stream used to be. They were distraught.

What happened to the stream? they all questioned in panic. No answer came.

And so began the drought experience of Gwashu village.

Their plants began to die, their livestock too. Thirst soon became the order of the day and the villagers were forced to ration the little water they had left.

The villagers began to summon the gods of the land, asking for mercy if they had offended them in any way. Still, the drought persisted as there was no rain to replenish the empty stream.

When Penda saw that they had learned their lesson, he summoned the villagers and divulged what he and the drought fairy had done.

The villagers were remorseful. They regretted wasting water and refusing to listen to Penda’s pleas. They begged Penda to undo the curse, stating that they would conserve water going forward.

Penda saw that they were, indeed, remorseful. So, he brought the drought fairy to undo the curse.

The fairy looked up to the sky and mumbled some words that no one could understand. In a few seconds after that, it seemed as though the heavens opened and it began to rain heavily.

What was fascinating about the whole scenario was that it only rained at the spot where the stream used to be. The stream soon began to fill up.

The villagers roared in happiness, lifting Penda up and chanting “Shujaa!”

And so, the curse was broken and the villagers soon had access to water from the stream. They learned their lesson, thanks to Penda.

*Shujaa is a Swahili expression for “brave”, “courageous” or “hero”.

End of ClimateStory.

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