Return To Gulu
On Saturday, August 9th the Ssbui Foundation team, consisting of Philip, Dusman, Tracy, myself, my sister Laura, Shaun, of course and Clay headed to Gulu, northern Uganda to meet with Mrs. Openie and to see the location of the Lelobarro community.
We arrived to a sea of smiling faces and to a chorus of singing and clapping – there isn’t too much else that can make me feel so good. Mrs. Openie showed us the gardens that each of the classes had planted with tools that the Ssubi Foundation had donated the year before. The gardens were large and represented a healthy future for the kids that they themselves had created.
Once Mrs. Openie had guided the children back to their classrooms, we were seated under a tree where we would watch a series of poems, performed in both English and Lou(Acholi). The poems were about the pain and hardship many of these people have suffered. At one point I looked over at the driver of our minivan, a local Gulu man, and he was crying. I can only imagine his story to cause such a reaction.
The highlight of the performances was the school choir and band. They played together with instruments bought by Ssubi Foundation. As I sat and listened I realized that the talent of these children would be appreciated anywhere in the world. In particular, there was a very young boy who played the wooden xylophone with such passion that he rendered all of us awestruck.
At the conclusion of the presentations, a small group of older children sang a song to me. How do I describe such a gift? I began to cry and again I was struck by the selflessness of these people. As they sang of their gratitude I felt I should be thanking them as nothing else I have done in my life has ever brought me such happiness.