A Blog from volunteers Sally and Keith in Uganda
(Sally and Keith are tutors at Canon Apolo Teachers College in Ft Portal)
The wet season is now in full force with the usual pattern of sun in the morning then about 2pm the heavens open for a few hours or so with lots of thunder and lightning. We have a new volunteer with our organisation called Sophie and her partner is a doctor in the town who apparently had a case brought into his surgery of a man who had been struck by a lightning bolt which had travelled right through him and he lived to tell the tale!
Keith has been working on some more pull along toys for the Early Childhood Development (ECD) children at the college. Wheels have always been a problem to find here, so we had some made at a carpentry training workshop and they made 8 beautiful wooden wheels on a lathe for about £3 which we thought was a bargain. So the ECD will soon have a pull along cart and a taxi which they will love. When I walk up to the college I pass the children playing outside and to see them all running around with the trolleys, wheelbarrows and busses that Keith has made and it is a real joy to see.
The second year students returned and got stuck into their school practice preparations. The staff had a school practice training meeting which started at 2 pm and I hear went on until 10 pm. I am afraid that by 6.50 pm I couldn’t take anymore. Especially since the topic was ‘how to mark a register’ which was almost comical as there were disputes about whether you put a tick or a diagonal line on the register. I remember from the last school practice meeting that this topic was thrashed out then, but they had obviously all forgotten!
It was a hectic time helping the second years with their chart making for school practice but the standard of work was so much better than previous times.
The first weekend that the students were at their schools Keith, Gloria and I went out to bang some nails into classroom walls onto which string was tied for displaying work. One school we went to there were only male students, but they were so pleased to see us, especially as we took their group photo.
The Moderators from Kyambogo University observe the students in their schools next week and next Friday we have a staff meeting with them when they give their feedback. So I will no doubt hear what their views are on the chart making then.
Keith and I needed some comfort food during this busy time, so I made some fruit scones in the electric oven that previous VMs left us before she returned home to Ireland. Another friend gave us some long life whipping cream so it was put to good use as the most delicious cream tea we have ever had (in Uganda).
I offered to paint a huge Rotary road sign that has been stood beside the main road leading to Kasesse. It was in a bad state and I have since been told that the last time it was painted was 15 years ago. It was covered with rust and election posters so looked awful. So with a bit of a struggle the college pick up brought it back to the college, it took eight of the male students to carry it to the workshop where I have been working on it for the past three weeks. It seems to have been a bit of a slow process as the rain has been ‘disturbing me’ due to the fact it is too big and heavy to get into the workshop, so I have been painting outside on the veranda.
Also it is double sided, so I have just about completed the first side which is looking a thousand times better than it did.
We have a group of young Rotarians at the college and they are called Rotaractors. Keith and I were invited to one of their meetings so I decided to make them all a Rotaract badge each. I downloaded a picture of the badge then replicated it 50 times on a word document and took my flash drive to town and had 4 colour photocopies made. I mounted them onto card, covered each badge with sellotape, put a safety pin on the back and they were delighted with them. We had a visit from the Kampala Rotaractors on Independence Day who came with 100 trees for us to plant in the college grounds. Keith and I were asked to plant a tree, so we made a little speech and said we were planting our tree on behalf of the Rotary Club of Saltash, England
My sister Sue returns to Uganda next Wednesday after being home in the UK for only six weeks. She is coming out to deliver more training for ECD, but this time she will be working with the Ministry of Education and not UNICEF.
Love Sal and Keith