United Arab Emirates, Uganda · 21 Days · 12 Moments · June 2017

Uganda 2017

19 July 2017

Happy Humpday!! This has certainly been a week of ups and downs. On Monday I went back to Achilet to see how they were getting on after my training last week and was disappointed to see that one teacher had kept all of the cones and resources to herself meaning that no one else had been able to access them!! Downhearted, I went back to Rugot on Tuesday hoping for a more positive day. I was certainly not disappointed!! Each teacher was desperate to show me what they had been practicing and even had new games which they had invented themselves! I was blown away by how much they had bought into the idea. Children literally didn't want the games to stop. Today I spent the morning at Guara Guara school, helping them to prepare for the football pitch for the tournament tomorrow. There's is certainly some skill which goes into marking a pitch like this and I had a little crowd staring at me as I dug away. We are all excited for tomorrow!! Fingers crossed the weather stays good πŸ‘ŒπŸΌ

11 July 2017

This is one picture which is certainly worthy of a post all on its own. Here are Beatrice and Francis, two key members of the TEP team. Francis is a TEP instructor, responsible for delivering CPD to local teachers and is a fantastic conversationalist. His understanding of current affairs and educational philosophy is outstanding- even more so when you consider how progressive his view is compared to the current Education system in Uganda. Beatrice is the treasurer, chief finance officer, senior field officer of the ERA program and mother to everyone she meets. Whilst we are here, we are staying in Beatrice's house and I feel like she has quickly become my African grandmother- her homemade chips can certainly rival those of my real grandma. She has such a huge heart and is one of the kindest people I have ever met. As well as helping the TEP she also homes 8 young children who do not have families and pays for their schooling. What fantastic people!! β€οΈπŸ‡ΊπŸ‡¬

10 July 2017

Did someone say it's the summer holidays? Well not for me and Em, it's 7am and we are up and off to school!! 😴😴 We went back to Achelet school today to begin our programmes. Emily observed some phonics lessons in the morning and then sat down with teachers to feedback and set out a plan for the next few days. I observed a PE lesson in Year 1 and then demonstrated and shared some ideas with all the class teachers. Running a session for 80 kids who don't speak English certainly put me out of my comfort zone, but the kids seemed to enjoy themselves and teachers seemed very receptive to the ideas of a more student centred approach. An encouraging first day!!! P.S. check out this cute pic of chicks and some of the local children at our house 😍

9 July 2017

Think church is boring? Not in Uganda! Myself and Emily were lucky enough to be invited to join the local Pentecostal church for their Sunday service. We were blown away by the fantastic community spirit between everyone and how welcomed we were. I lost count of how many handshakes and hugs I received. The choir was stunning and full of energy. We couldn't help but get up and dance and clap with everyone else. However, along with the fun came an important message for the community to prepare for hard times. They have just come out of a 9 month drought and the church leaders stressed the importance of preserving crops for the future. We will definitely be going back next Sunday πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡¬β›ͺ️❀️

6 July 2017

We have arrived in Pomede. Time to get down to business!! Today we visited 2 schools (Achilet and Rugot) to get more of an idea about what we will be doing over the next two weeks. We were lucky enough to watch a lesson in Achilet which was fantastic. Teaching 100 pupils ages 5-8, Janice did great at engaging the whole class. The children were learning simple subtraction and were using sticks as counters- a great example of how they are making the most of the resources available. We also visited Rugot School which TEP has worked closely with over the past few years. When TEP first arrived most of the lessons were taught outside under the shade of trees. If it rained the children would have to go home, which in rainy season could be a big problem!! Also sometimes snakes could fall out of the trees into the middle of the class- scary!! In 2015 TEP built 2 new classrooms with desks for Rugot which has been life changing for the schools, pupils and staff. We can't wait for Monday!!!

5 July 2017

As KT. Tunstall once said "You're on the other side of the world to me" 🎡 Which is exactly what happened to me and Emily today when we visited the equator!! Contrary to popular belief that the equator is always hot we actually were pretty chilly and had to wrap up in our jumpers. After lunch we had lunch (on opposite sides of the planet) and did a bit of shopping we headed back to Kampala. Who likes my African wall hangings? Pretty funky hey!! Speaking of funky... what about this controversial African haircut? I'm not convinced πŸ€”

3 July 2017

Day 5 of our trip. How time flies!!! Today we went on a Boda Boda tour around Kampala. A Boda Boda is a motorbike taxi. They get their name from in the past when people would cross the Uganda-Kenya border. People were not allowed to cross by car and it was too far to walk hence to need for motorbikes to take you for border to boarder. Say "border to border" fast enough and you have "Boda Boda"! Voila!! On our trip we visited the slums of Kampala, the temple for Baha'i (a faith which encompasses all religions), the national Mosque (which can host upto 35,000 worshippers and has fantastic 360* views of the city, the bus station 'of organised chaos' and the fish market next to Lake Victoria. We also ate a Rolex for lunch. A local snack which is a eggs (omelette) rolled on a chapatti. Say "roll eggs" fast enough and what do you get? "Rolex" Gettit?! πŸ˜„ Kampala sure is a crazy city!!

2 July 2017

Another great day!! A yummy last breakfast at camp and then a looooong drive back Kampala. How to break up a long journey? Stop off at a Rhino sanctuary!! White Rhinos were extinct in Uganda in 1993 because of poaching. However thanks to the work that 'Rhino Fund Uganda' have done there are now 20 White Rhinos being cared for here at the sanctuary. These really are beautiful creatures whose sheer power and size is breathtaking. A great way to end our Safari trip!

1 July 2017

Wowwwww where to start?? What a day!!!! Today we woke up early and set off on a game safari tour across the savannah. Our expectations were pretty low after yesterday's disappointment of missing the chimpanzees. However thanks to our fantastic guide we got to see an incredible number of animals first hand including, giraffes, African elephants, wild boars, jackals, hyenas, cobs (the national animal of Uganda), patas monkeys, batla eagles, lions and leopards!! We then came back to camp, had lunch and headed out to see Murchison falls. This is an incredibly powerful waterfall which forms part of the Victorian Nile river. Me and Emily felt it only right to drink a Nile beer whilst on the river Nile #lifegoals. Adding to our list of animals for the day we also saw an abundance of hippos, crocodiles and swooping kingfishers along the way. In Emily's words "This is the best day of my life". πŸ˜πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡¬πŸ¦πŸ―πŸ’πŸ—πŸΊπŸŠπŸ˜

30 June 2017

Today we woke up to a beautiful East African sunrise and headed off up to Murchison Falls. The first stop was to go Chimpanzee tracking in the jungle with our guide, Tibo. Unfortunately, after 4 hours of searching we didn't see any chimpanzees (we did hear one). However we did see lots of other great wildlife including these very brazen baboons!

29 June 2017

We have arrived safe and sound in Kampala (the capital of Uganda). Here is a picture of our view tonight 😍 Tomorrow we head to Murchison Falls for the first day of our safari trip. Excited!!
En route to Uganda!!! A long flight via Dubai but a quiet plane and a few bubbles and last minute luxuries before we land. Thank you to everyone for their kind wishes and to those who donated money. A special thanks to Miss Francesca from 107 who made all of this possible. Can't wait for the next few weeks. Stay tuned β€οΈπŸ‡ΊπŸ‡¬