They say we are a fast-paced generation. Partying is our motivation; each day we drink alcohol and smoke cigarettes to ease the pain!

My kasi is full of aspiring future leaders with hopelessness in their eyes. No achievers or role models to look up to, unless it’s drug dealers. There is always a negative story behind someone who used to be or was doing well. They will tell you he used to work at the mines but you won’t believe because now he is always drunk an care free. They will say she used to be so smart at school when she was doing nursing but she started going mad in her first year. You will find Somalian shops full of young boys, gossiping. And you will realise they are full of dreams but they are afraid to chase them as they might also end up as targets.

My neighbourhood is a good place to grow up into, because we stay true to the definition of ‘it takes a village to raise a child’. But, at night it is everyone for himself. There’s no trust but love for each other. How come? One will ask. Lack of opportunities make everyone look out for themselves. Unemployment make people get into crime. Frustrations are running deep; everyone is angry at their living conditions. There is a no way forward because good ideas are dying daily. When you sell fruits or mixed-veg, the will discourage you or steal your stock. Brothers who should we look up to are singing in my time. They always tell us how they got bewitched just before realising their dreams.

We have siblings who have degrees but they are just sitting at home jobless and homeless. Some are smoking nyaope ‘just to cope’. Some drown their sorrows in the bottle. People will tell you they would do anything for money or something to eat. That gives grown men a chance to exploit young girls.

Mothers, fathers and uncles are crying for our community; the streets are full of drugs and young kids are lazing around. Who must we blame and what must we do? The fact remains: we all want to do something with the time we spend smoking and drinking. But we lack the ability to do so, because we don’t know where to start.

Government officials come only during elections, carrying empty promises. And we took a vow to never listen to whatever they have to say. I took a stand that my kasi will be better if we explore our ideas but we lack capital. Now we are out here feeling hopeless, we all think no one cares. That’s a short story about my kasi: broken dreams, sorrow and full of pain.


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