So to catch people up, last year I helped Bringing Hope start an income generating project. That project is called Village Art and is a craft shop. They had a good beginning last year and it is continuing on this year. The girls that work in this shop come from nothing. They did not even get a chance to finish school due to things that might come up, like needing to take care of their family because a parent died. Another reason would be that they did not have the money to pay for secondary school. Thus they were eligible to go to Bringing Hope’s Dorcas vocational school.  These girls did very well in school and were selected to be able to work in the shop. Most of these girls have never been anywhere other than the village. Most of them have never been to Kampala, which is the capital. Most of them have not been beyond a 15 mile radius of the village, so their world view is very small. I would say that is the case for most of the village.
It is hard to imagine anything different if you have never seen anything different. I wanted to help out the girls fix up the place that they were working in. I wanted to expand their mind and show them something that is nice. I wanted to add color to help them create something new. So on we raised money to do the repairs and fix ups that I had in mind. We raised money for paint, some shelves, a table, and to put a light and outlet in the new retail store they are going to open.

I had no idea paint can make such a difference. We had so many people come by to see what was happening. People were amazed to see that a place in the village could look so nice and that they can dare to do something different.

That is why I said that paint on the wall can also paint the mind. I have to admit, I did not come up with that saying – a Ugandan friend said it to me. I hope to see other store owners in Kaihura follow this example.
So, Village Art is a craft work shop and a craft store. And coming really soon they will also have a salon (or what they call a saloon). The new manager for VA just graduated from beauty school and will be teaching at the vocational school and while also be doing hair in the Salon. We are hoping that this will bring in even more money for the shop and for Bringing Hope. There is not a good place to get hair done around here for women so we hope to be the place to go! If you want to get involved with this we will be posting more needs on KTA soon for the salon. Also, if you own a business or know someone who does and would like to order crafts to sell just let us know and we can figure that out!

As Always,

Stay adventurous

There has been a lot happening in Kaihura over the last week. There have been two soccer tournaments over the last two weekends. This past Sunday the boys from Home Again placed second in the youth tournament.

The rafters have been set in place for Hope Again Medical Center’s new clinic over the last week. The roof should be completed over the next couple of weeks.

Also, schools started back up today. The secondary students from Home Again were transported back to boarding school, and the nursery and primary students resumed classes locally as well.

International Coordinator – Uganda

While I was attending a well handover ceremony recently in the village of Kariruga in the Katooke District (Western Uganda) I met some guys who had taken the opportunity to use their surroundings to make some money. In that area a lot of sugar cane is grown. So, these guys had mastered the art of making liquor from the sugar cane.

They had a hand cranked pressing machine that squeezed the sugar water out of the canes. Then they had a large trough where they let the sugar water ferment. After the fermentation process it was brought over to the distillery.

Now, I must say that I came upon this entire operation by accident. While I was waiting for the ceremony to begin I went over to see the communities old water source again. To my surprise the old water source is now a distillery. Only one of the guys, Peter, could speak English. He was very friendly and he walked me through the process of how they make the liquor. Once the entire process has been completed they collect the liquor and it is sent to Kampala where it is purchased by a packaging company. I was amazed to see such ingenuity and entrepreneurship being done in this village. I am not advocating one way or the other on liquor, but it was great to see young men taking initiative and making an income for themselves.

International Coordinator – Uganda

While I was visiting Bringing Hope’s farm in Kyongera last week I stopped and watched two of the vocational school students play checkers on their homemade board for a few minutes. I have to say I was impressed with their ingenuity. Bottle caps and plastic roofing nail washers for their pieces. Brilliant.

Just thought I would share.

International Coordinator – Uganda

I recently visited Bringing Hope to the Family’s farm and male vocational school in Kyongera. Over the last year,
Bringing Hope has made farming one of their main focuses. Their hope is that they will produce a large enough amount of crops to substantially cut down on their monthly food bills. Some of the produce will be for consumption and some will be sold in order to buy other foods.

Upon my visit I was pleasantly surprised to see how well the matooke trees (a type of banana) were doing in such a short amount of time.

The boys in the vocational school were in the process of planting pineapple “suckers.” Their maize was growing very well also. Tomatoes, collard greens, and eggplants were growing as well.

Bringing Hope to the Family recently installed an irrigation system at the farm.

A couple of the guys in the vocational school program gave me a demonstration.  It works great. Progress!

International Coordinator – Uganda