EWAD volunteers are going to Rukungiri for visiting the sponsored children in Nyakibaale – boarding school

In July, Chida and I set off on an 8 hour bus rid to Rukungiri to visit the sponsored children in the boarding-school and their grandmothers. EWAD also got some packets with presents from the sponsors over the last months, so this journey would be a nice opportunity to bring those presents to the children, to speak with them about their live in school and to take some new pictures.

Chida and I arrived late on Friday 8th of July and spent their night Riverside- hotel close to the EWAD-Rukungiri Office. The next morning Keneth, the EWAD representer of Rukungiri picked us up with his motorcycle and we bought some cake, geanuts and bananas for the children. After that we went to the school and spoke with the children, wether they need new school-clothes or shoes and took some current picture, which was a lot of fun, as you might see below. The food we brought, was a nice change of the usual school diet: 365days Cornmush and beans. In the afternoon Chida went to visit some of the grand-mothers.

Beside that Chida and me developped a new project-idea and during this trip and we took first steps to realize it. As soon as we arrived in Rukungiri, we were impressed of the high amount of (drunken) mens in the streets an the low amount of women.We asked the men, where their women stay and they told us that they are at home, working and caring for the children. In Ugandans Tradition it is very prestigous to have a huge number of children , the avarage of children is 6,8 per family. To care for them is mainly the job of the women. To raise, provide them with food and medical treatment and send them to school, needs mostly more then the family can afford. Would thefamily reduce their average of children to 2,1 per family through birth-controlling would that bring a lot of benefits. But espacially in the rural areas it is very hard for most of the people to get informations about birth-controlling. So Chida and me got the Idea to teach about the possibilities and benefits of family-planing through a theater-perfomance.

On Satuarday evening Chida and me went for dinner to Rendevous-hotel and there we got to know a girl that could conect us to a local theater-group, which would be willing to act in the play. Keneth told us a location for the performance : the hospital could provide the space and furthermore there would be nurses for private conselling after the performnce.

On sunday morning we had to leave Rukungiri. We’ll keep especially the hotel-manager in good memories. He studied Hotel-business some years ago in France and our french conversations during breakfast-time were always very amusing. We enjoyed the bus-ride back, through the beautiful hilly landscape of Rukungiri, while passing time by eating fresh Ugandan fruits and grilled corn and discussing about the theater-play.

Back home in Entebbe we wrote the play, which is diveded into seven scenes, which include topics like Women’s rights, Birth Control and Family Planning, Being able to afford sending children to school, Land Constraints, Income, and Old Age Care. It will be transalted into Runyankole, the lokal language in Rukungiri by the EWD-officers, Shallon and Fortunate. Right now we are still trying to get the funds (for birth-control, condoms and payment for actors and counselors) to realize the family-planing project.

Helene Bollig, 2011, EWAD Intern