January 20, 2009 was a momentous day in the history of the United States. Barack Obama’s inauguration was televised and celebrated around the world, and Kumbo, Cameroon was no exception.
The Kumbo Barack Obama Fan Club prepared for weeks for the event. The club, complete with president, secretary, and board, was founded as a nonprofit organization to support the work and sentiments of President Obama. The Himalayan Institute Cameroon (HIC) staff received an invitation from the club to attend an all-day celebration. The agenda was as follows:
Time — Activity
8:00 a.m. — Run Cross Country
10:00 a.m. — Speeches from the Club President
10:30 a.m. — Award of Prizes
11:00 a.m. — Achaba Boys’ Display
12:00 p.m. — Dance
5:00 p.m. — Screening of the Inauguration
The HIC staff joined the club to watch the inauguration. The audience broke into cheers and applause as Obama said, “…all are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness.” To the people of Cameroon, Obama’s election is a hopeful reminder that even the poorest and most oppressed people can pull themselves up to their rightful state of equality, dignity, and success.
The club will use the money raised during the day’s events to support local HIV/AIDS clinics, as well as a children’s hospital.