Tuesday 24th July
Today 4 of us (Ian, Emma, Lynne and Ricky) returned to Pallisa – this time to visit a church not yet involved in the PEP process. We have received some enthusiastic welcomes in Uganda but this topped the lot! We later discovered that these people (a further hour’s drive from the already remote Pallisa) had never had any white people in their church before. Ian was asked to share ‘a word of encouragement’ from the Scriptures before discucussing what might help lift them out of poverty. The contrast between this community and yesterday’s helped highlight the true value of the PEP process. Earlier in the day we also met a truly inspirational woman – Trish Spedall – who runs Amina House (literally Love House). She cares for the poorest of the poor giving them shelter and access both to education & medical care. We shall tell you more about her when we return…
Alison, Beth and Katie spent more time down at Sunlight school. Beth and Alison went round the classrooms teaching the children about hand hygiene and every class was given a large bottle of hand gel. Katie taught the Primary 5 class their 6 and 9 timestables. They worked on their timestables by playing some interactive games and making a timestable, which they decorated to help them remember their multiples of 6 and 9. The head mistress was delighted with the practical approach she took as she said this is how the children learn best.
In the afternoon Alison met with a women’s Vicoba group. Due to changing lifestyles, Western diseases such as diabetes and heart disease are on the increase. She gave a brief overview on the conditions, risk factors and preventive measures. We then had Q&A session……with a lot of questions but it showed the desperate need for basic health education.
Sarah & John spent the afternoon in a small panel reviewing 16 business submissions & presentations by individuals or teams in the local community for a financial gift to get them started. It was really like a “Dragons’ Den” approach and brilliant to hear some of the ideas that ranged from buying pigs to share with the community, starting poultry farming, buying land to produce and sell bananas & vegetables etc. We decided the winner was a lady who wanted to invest in equipment to start a bakery in her house in a remote village and in so doing, provide employment for up to 10 local people.
The rest of us had a chill morning playing games with the children at Kitega – they love duck duck goose and rounders. In the afternoon we visited Kawolo hospital in Lugazi to particularly see the paediatric and the maternity wards, we are thankful that they have a hospital, however we hope that the sanitary conditions and amount of medication improve. After this we then went to visit some of the projects that Kitega centre has set up for the children, the child has their own project and must be involved with it outside school hours and the idea is that when they leave the centre they have a business ready for them. One group visited Rachel’s shop filled with flour, beans, toiletries, sweets, eggs and much more. The other group visited Shamime’s house, she has a water project where she sells water to the local community. She also has goats and a little shop and hopes to have a supermarket one day.
Thank you for all your prayers. In both challenges & blessings this trip has gone way beyond all that we could possibly have expected. Thank you Lord.