You are all invited to a football match Friday, August 6th at 2:00 between Palenga Primary School (hosts) and Lela Obaro Primary School (visitors). Jersey, shorts, soccer balls and medals were donated by players from the Tuscany Soccer Association coordinated by Lori Gaffney. Thank you. Everyone is very excited about the impending match, most of all the students.
Archive for July, 2010
Today we had a chat with a Brigadier General in the Ugandan Military at the hotel we are staying in. He was impressed with Ssubi but noted we are a few grains of sand in an ocean and we need to find a way to pool resources and become the ocean. Only then will we see success on the scale necessary to make change. This is in so many ways correct, but I was reminded of a story my friend James once told me about a man walking down the beach and throwing stranded starfish back into the sea. A man approached him and asked why are you bothering there are so many stranded starfish what difference will you make. The man throwing the starfish back into the sea turned and said; well it makes a hell of a difference to this one doesn’t it. Success is as you define it and small successes can be the catalyst for big change. Cheers to the Brigadier General for his wise thoughts, may we continue the conversation next time we meet.
Today, the sun came out and we spend the morning touring the site, talking with the engineers and helping to paint the fence posts for the Canada Building (renamed the Bat Building). In the afternoon we had a meeting with Madame Openy about the schools performance in National Exams. They are working hard to improve the level of performance of the school during national exams. It is a difficult task, but she has years of experience behind her. There are 1320 students at Palegna Primary School with 23 teachers, with only 57 students in Primary 7 compared with 230 in Primary 1.
Today we worked onsite, it was very wet and muddy. Most projects took place in doors, but those of us who are hard core remained outside and installed poles for the fence going around the Canada Building which is to become a resource centre with computers. It was hard work and took us four hours to mix the cement and install the poles.
Today, the local government and Ministry of Education signed a MOU to better education in Gulu. We were honoured they chose to sign the MOU at Palenga School because of the progress being made to improve the schools infrastructure. The participants (district LC5 chairmen and school administrators) were taken on a tour of the school construction projects by Dusman and each one planted a tree in front of the newly built teacher quarters.
Tracy and Clay have arrived in Uganda and we are now all in Gulu working on the infrastructure projects at Palenga. It is great to be back in Uganda and see the incredible progress being made so far. We had fun exploring the site and were sad to learn we had missed seeing all the snakes driven away when the sites were cleared for construction. We also missed the bats that had taken up roosting in Canada Building (one of the first buildings Ssubi constructed). We had to remove the ceiling, seal the openings and then replace the ceiling. The mess was really quite unbelievable as there were hundreds of them. There are so many interesting things to see on site about the Ugandan way of life.
Things are going well and progress is being made on the infrastructures projects this year. Ssubi has approximately 100 workers from Gulu and Kampala working at Palenga Primary School this summer. This year we have hired four women to help with the building, this is a first for us and we are excited they found us.
Desiree and David have arrived on site to lend a hand this week. They are on a tour of Africa which started at the World Cup in South Africa and ends up in Uganda with Ssubi.
This year’s infrastructure projects include:
*Renovating a classroom block into a fully furnished school library (including solar lights).
*Building four teacher accommodations including latrines and cook houses for each unit.
And we all thought this year was going to be less intensive on the building front.
Ssubi also hit the news this week in an article published in the New Vision Newspaper.
Philip arrived in Kampala and was invited to attend a school concert at Lilly Kindergarten and Primary School. Each grade performed a song or dance in front of parents and well wishers of the school. The Ssubi Foundation re-built Lilly School in the summer of 2007. What a great way to start his summer work.