Kenyans living abroad give reviews of living in USA, Canada, UK and Australia

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Kenyans living abroad have provided their reviews of living abroad and the shock they got after they arrived in UK,USA,Canada and Australia:

*****

Mine will look like an essay but here gies:

UK shocked me in many aspects of healthcare. I am no mother so I do not have any experience with maternity wings but in terms of NHS hospitals, though it is free and we thank God for that, they are as badly staffed as Kenyan public hospitals.

The doctors are also a little slower in diagnosing patients as they wait for a slew of tests and bloods to rule out this and that. There is also a lot of red tape in terms of who sees which patient for what. Patients easily get lost to follow up due to the several sub specialties which interestingly do not communicate with one another.

About nursing, kusema ukweli overseas trained nurses are 100 times more skilled than UK-trained nurses. I feel like if you take away medication administration and other few basic skills, the UK-trained nurse has nothing left with them apart from extremely beautiful academic essays and reflective practice. I love their academic writing and references and all that shabang. Aki I am not hating. UK nursing education needs a few tweaks here and there.

On the bright side though I was amazed that I could go into a hospital for a major operation and come out without bills. That plus the number of professionals who are available to take care of you as opposed to Kenya.

I was also happy to see how well organised their healthcare systems are. Having come from a public hospital in Kenya, nilishangaa kupata ambulances ziko na life support equipment 🤭. I was used to empty oxygen concentrators in ambulances with the unhelpful “hakuna mafuta ya ambulance ya kupeleka mgonjwa Kenyatta,” statement from whoever was in charge.

It also amazes me how patient the British are. They queue for everything. Show me an event in the UK and I will show you a tiny weeny queue. They are so patient as long as you tell them “please” and “thank you.” Wapatie tu please and thank you and they will queue till the cows come home. Soccer matches is where they draw the line though. Hapo ni mauano.

Finally the houses here are tinier than what I had in Kenya bana. I did not have much space in Kenya to start with but I tell you compared to what I have here in the UK, yangu ya Kenya ilikuwa mansion 🥲🥲🥲. I see nurses in Australia and USA giving people house tours najiuliza sasa UK kwangu nitakuonyesha nini exactly? Nikiwa jikoni niko bedroom, end of story. Wachana na sisi I say

UK hakuna space. The roads are tiny and they force cycle lanes on those tiny roads, then they reduce speed limit to 20. Mtafika kesho

Perhaps that’s because public transport works. At least where I live, we have excellent public transport system which is a million times better than what Kenya has in terms of transport.

I could go on and on but what I have truly appreciated with UK is how they build systems that work and outlast them. They care for their country, deeply. It isn’t much in terms of land mass but they genuinely want to give their children and their children a better UK than they found it. You see it in the way they work hard, construct buildings, prioritise safety etc etc. It remains a great country for someone to move to if they can.

I know that might be too much information but I hope it is alright….

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so on point…When I had my son at St George’s through elective caesarian as in I chose to have a caesarian after being given the option, I had a team of 10 staff in the theatre room assigned to me which included midwife, gynaecologist ,anaesthetist etc….My son was immediately checked and they noticed he was born with a tongue tie and inguinal hernia….to them this was a big thing compared to Kenya whereby kids grow up and end up with a stammer in their speech because nothing was done….In two weeks (14days),he was taken into theatre as tiny as he was and his hernia operated on and the tongue tie cut back to normal..He is now grown and healthy…The best part is I did not even have to think of hospital bills at any time. Just walk into hospital and walk out with all the necessary afters( medications and dressings) and follow up appointment dates.

*****

My friend was hosting his cousin and the spouse who were new immigrants.

The lady was pregnant.

On her first clinic visit,they allocated a dedicated obs-gyn aka obygayna with a follow up referral by social workers who gave a shopping voucher for special diet prescribed by “maternity nutritionist”. This applied till she gave birth.

Before discharge, the nurses came to confirm if the residence was suitable for a new born. According to them, it was not. They opined that it was not conducive for a baby.

They gave out a 2 bedroom, brand new house, fully furnished with modern equipments.

The nurses call frequently to confirm the status of the infant.

*****

When our child was born 14 years ago in Guelph, Ontario Canada, we were under the care of a midwife. They asked us if we wanted a home delivery or a hospital one.

We inquired about how a home one would work and they said it would happen in the bathtub If there was an emergency, they would call 911.

We chose hospital delivery very fast! We were not into taking risks, especially with childbirth!

On the day of the delivery, we went to the hospital and were given a room, no doctor or nurse – we had our own two midwives. The delivery happened uneventfully but we got discharged the same day, just a few hours later.

This was the surprising part because we expected mother and baby to stay at the hospital for at least a day.

We got a homecare nurse who visited our residence for several days after in addition to our midwife who made follow-ups and provided all the support we needed.

We also had to use a car seat as it’s the law. At least I remembered to carry one but buckling up a one-day old baby was very challenging!

****

+61

– Traffic offences earn you a fine of upto Ksh.60K for going over the speed limit, failing to indicate, jumping the red light. Splashing water on a pedestrian is a traffic offence. Pedestrians have right of way, as in, traffic will stop for them to cross the road. They just have to press a button. Every fine comes with a reduction in your demerit points, they are 12 na zikiisha they take your licence. Due to these strict rules everyone has no choice but to abide and drive safely. Back home, your driving speed is determined by how late you are, here it is determined by the speed limit. Oh, there’s so much order at the roundabout home roundabout ni mwenye nguvu mpishe. Huku you must wait for the one already inside the roundabout to indicate the direction they are going before you can enter.

– Parking by the roadside is legal. Mtu anapark Tu kwa Barbara.

– There are no dirt roads. You walk with shoes umetoka nazo nje inside the house.

– During summer it gets dark at 9pm, during winter darkness sets in at 5PM

-They don’t take education past highschool as seriously as we do. Most of them only go up to highschool but everyone who looks for a job will find two or three. Sisi ndio tunajali about master’s na PhD.

-They are very generous, welcoming and polite

****

When I arrived in USA and got my first salary,$7,300.I thought it was a lot of money and went ahead to buy luxuries,shock on me.I was broke the second week.In USA even if your salary is Ksh 1.5 million, you have to budget well—it will never be enough. Here we work to pay bills.

*****

I relocated to USA with my wife.I thought women cook for their wives and do all the house chores. I later came to realize that bills and responsibilities are equally shared. Thank God I was used to cooking for my family back at home—it wasn’t difficult for me to adjust.

****

In Australia snakes are all over.You can wake up and find a big snake crawling slowly from you bedroom. But you are not allowed to kill them.

At first I was scared but eventually I found it normal seeing snakes.

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I was a parrot in Kenya lakini in UK you may live with someone as a neighbor for 10 years even without knowing their name.

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