Tuesday, 6 December 2011

The Last Word

I got home safely - three long weeks which had passed like greased lightening.

I could not have done this trip without a lot of help and support from a lot of people, but also without the very active support of both Bees Abroad and Global Care.

I hope that as a result of the visit I and cathy will be able to help some of the people we met via both Bees Abroad and Global Care and that we will go back to Uganda in future years to continue with this work.

These charities exist on donations - so PLEASE - spend a few minutes now and give them both a donation. It will literally take a few minutes and a £20 donation can do so much good. I have seen the evidence of that first hand and I hope you have too from this blog. Much money of the money to these charities goes directly to help these people.

So PLEASE go to both web sites and give some money. We have so much, and that can do so much good.

Bee Abroad web site

Global Care website http://www.globalcare.org.uk/

Thank you, I hope you have enjoyed the blog, that is it until the next one, next year.

Dave Bonner

The trip home

Charles and I left at 6am and headed south to Kampala. The roads were clear for the first couople of hours and Charles was able to use the full width of the road and the 'pavements' to swerve back and forth to miss the pot holes.

We arrived on the outskirts of Kampala at 12 and it then took 2 hours to do the last ten miles. Traffic was gridlocked.

We got to Guiding Star school, which Gertrude runs. Gertrude showed us, with pride, the water tanks that she had had installed with a donation Cathy and I had been able to raise for her. Two tanks, one 10,000 litre the other 8,000 litres.

The formal photo of Gertrude and I in front of one of the water tanks.

Then it was into Kampala again for a last meal together before off to the airport and my flight home.

The last photo - Charles who did a fantastic job of looking after me, Gertrude who is a fantastic person doing a huge amount of good work at her school and at the women's prison in Kampala. Gertrude's daughter is becoming a "chip off the old block" too.

Goodbyes were said - with the promise to meet again next year.

Soroti Last Day - 2nd Dec

Today I was to meet the last three sponsored children at the Global care centre at Soroti. Michael, Janet and Melissa were all coming along with therui guardians.

Michael receiving his gifts

Michael seeing photos of his sponsors.

Michael, his mother and brothers and sisters.

Janet getting a letter from her Sponsor. She is in her school uniform, or by the size of it it could be a borrowed one.

Janet getting her gifts.

Janet reading her letter. The children treasure these letters and photos. I have spoken to adults, who were Global Care children who still have the photos and letters from their sponsors.

Janet with her mother.

Melissa, a happy girl. She was dresssed in a lovely party frock donated to her at some stage.

Melissa getting her gifts.

Melissa and her mother.

At the end of the afternoon I was getting ready to leave the centre when Sam and Grace turned up. What a fantastic surprise. He had been allowed out of hospital and had come straight to the centre to see me.

Sam in Newcastle United top we gave to him last year when we visited.

Sam and Grace.

Global Care had aranged for Sam to stay at the centre for a few days to get rest and recover some more. Grace would go home and, there, she would get rest as well not worried about Sam.

Well I said goodbye to everyone, then Sam and Grace and five minutes after this photo I had left the centre.

It is hard leaving but I know that these visits, whilst so short, do a lot of good, showing to these wonderful people that somewhere else in the world people care about them.

I and Cathy plan to be back in Uganda next year and we will see our friends again then. In the meantime I know from experience that Global Care will keep us informed of what is happening and how things are going.

Day one at Soroti - 1st Dec (PHOTOS)

Up early to go to the Global care centre and start the day by going to meet children in their homes.

Driving on the roads you see some wonderous sites. The Taxi bicycles, with a seat behind the main saddle for the passenger.

This one had been hired by someone who was taking his chickens to the market. The chickens are live and when carried upside down remain very calm.

We went to Atira primary school where we met Mercy. She was with her mother and was dressed in her best (only) school uniform to meet us. She was delighted with the gifts.

When you look at photos of the children and their families remember that they make an effort to look nice, putting on the best clothes that they have. Generally they will only have one set of 'best clothes' or their school uniform. Their day to day clothes are likely ot be thread bare with holes and tears in.

Mercy receiving her gifts, with Richard the headmaster in the background.

Explaining to her the photo of her sponsors

Mercy and her mother before they went off on a Buda Buda to the hospital for a check up.

We then went to Charles home, just 300 metres away from the school. Charles is looked after by Rose. Rose looks after 14 children in total, she is the lay pastor and works closely with Richard the headmaster in helping the community.


receiving his gifts

Charles with Rose and some of the children she looks after.

As we walked back past the school Richard told us that s torm last year had blown the roof off one of the buildings and rain had got into the clay bricks making them soft and therefore the walls dangerous. the building would have to be knocked down.

We then went to Jesca home. Jesca is a very pretty young lady. She was working outside one of the mud huts when we arrived and immediately dissappeared inside to change into her best clothes. One of her brothers did the same when he realised that there was going to be a family photo taken.

Jesca's family, her father was away at the hospital as he is very sick.

Michael - Teacher at Atira school and beekeeper. Michael baits the frames as he would a Top bar in a KTB.

A Langstroth frame ready for extracting

Good quality Extraction equipment

Solar wax extractor that Michael had used the previous day.

Well looked after langstroth hives.

Most of the time the roads were bad and the dirt tracks challenging. However this was exceptional. It was like the videos you see of someone getting into a boat with one foot in the boat and the other on the quayside. The gap getting ever wider.

Well when we started down this track the rut was only narrow and not deep. By now it had got wide and very deep and was getting wider and deeper.

Reversing was not an option - Charles did manage to get us out of this situation with some very skillfull driving.

Gilbert receiving his gifts

Gilbert reading the letter from his sponsor.

Gilbert and his family.

Gilbert and his cow, bought with a donation from his sponsor.

Gilbert giving me a gift of a chicken

My chicken - now called 'CHALKY' at the Global care Centre in Soroti - her new home.

Sam in hospital.

Sam and his mother Grace

Sam's family at their home.

Sam's Goats. Cathy son, Alex had bought Sam one goat two years ago, now there are 5. After the next set of kids are born the plan is to sell some of the goats to buy a cow.

Micahel and Sam getting ready to do some beekeeping work

Micahel in protective gear made by Gertrude in the Sewing class at the Soroti centre

The Global Care Apiary - well looked after.

Squirrel nest in one of the empty KTBs.

The Beekeeping work finished for another day.

Selina entertaining us with juggling, something she learnt to do two years ago.

Monday, 5 December 2011

Arriving at Soroti - Photos - 30th

Michael - Global Care Centre manager with Beekeeping things we had donated to him.

Michael with the Sunflower seed harvest - each bag contained about 50kg. They bought 2kg of seed to plant and from that got a harvest of 100kg and the bees got the nectar.

Gertrude in her classroom, using it to the full.

Water harvesting system we installed two years ago and now fully implemented, reducing the water bills for the Training Centre. The tanks can be filled in one night of heavy rain.