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                       - Being a Child

                       - Kind kunnen zijn

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                        HORIZON

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           - Kwaliteits onderwijs

                            - Kwalitäts Schuling

MOVING  LIVES

- Improving living conditions

- Leefomstandig heden verbeteren

- Die Lebens Umstände verbessern

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- Eingang Unsere Schule

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Uganda Kitgum Education Foundation

Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” - Nelson Mandela.
 
Regardless of age, race, health, or social class, we all need education to unlock our potential and move forward as individuals and a society. The Uganda Kitgum Education Foundation (UKEF) is dedicated to improving lives and communities in Northern Uganda by opening schools for children left out of formal education after more than two decades of civil war. Despite the recognition of a rough road ahead, the people of Northern Uganda share the hope that rebuilding their lives is possible, and the belief that investing in education is fundamental to the process. The future of our children depends on access to good schools and qualified teachers.
Background Information 
The civil war between the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) and the government of Uganda affected Northern Uganda the most. It lasted between 1986 to 2006. Among other devastating effects, the war displaced more than 1.8 million people to Internally Displaced Peoples (IDPs) camps with an estimated 30,000 children abducted and use as child soldiers. Tens of thousand of Northern Ugandan civilian population suffered mutilation, loss of lives and properties. (Source)
With the silent of the guns since 2006, the region has witnessed relative peace and IDPs have gradually resettled back to their ancestral homes and communities. Unfortunately, limited access to social services such as education, health care, clean water and sanitation facilities are amongst the challenges an average person in Northern Uganda battles with on a daily basis.
Beside, there are increasing number of orphans as a result of the civil war, HIV/AIDS infection and deaths. The LRA adducted many young girls and used them as sex slaves. Some of these girls became mothers against their own will. Those who escaped captivity also battle the challenges of raising their children and providing for their families.
Overall, there is a high unemployment rate in Uganda. Inadequate access to education over the past decades led to massive youth unemployment in the country. More than 3 in every 4 Ugandan is below the age of 30 years. United Nations Report, 2011 estimates about 83 percent of Ugandan youth unemployed.
      DONATIONS : Bank information  : BIC/SWIFT : ABNANL2A - IBAN : NL26 ABNA 0603 5870 54ANBI LOGO
      KvK / Chamber of Commerce registration : 57166250  - ANBI / Registration 8524.65.178

 

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Heather Plett Visiting LAKER Memorial School

Ms. Heather Plett from Canada has Visited our project to celebrate our 5 year anniversary.

Here is a small report of here visit.

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I’ve left the snow behind. After two days of travel, I’m in Uganda! After a short stay in Kampala, we’ll be heading to Kitgum district to visit Nestar’s family and the school that many of you helped support.
Today (15/11/2018) has been more emotional than I expected it to be. I don’t yet have the right words to explain what it was like to pay our first visit to the school and to be so warmly welcomed as a member of the school family, so I’ll start with pictures. Perhaps more words will come later. These children have captured a piece of my heart.
 
 
 
Today (16-11-2018)  we visited a resettlement camp for refugees from South Sudan. I had images in my head of people living in tents, crowded close together, but this was not that image. Look closely at those huts - some have even planted flowers to make their (hopefully temporary) homes more welcoming. There are 32,000 people in this camp, and yet, surprisingly, we happened to wander into just the right block where Nestar’s relatives from Sudan are living while they wait for peace in their country to allow them to go back home.
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These are bicycles lined up for distribution at the refugee camp we visited. One of the things we learned while we were there is that the intention at this camp is to house the people here until they are able to return home, and not to resettle them in other countries. The EU sends money to keep the people at this camp, which may be partly protectionist (ie. keep them out of our countries) and partly wise (ie. they are likely better served staying close to their home, in case they can return some day). Now... I’ll admit to knowing little about refugee and resettlement issues, and this camp is far from the perfect answer (ie. able-bodied people complained about the lack of opportunity to make money for their families by doing things like making bricks for sale) but it begs the question - why wouldn’t the U.S. send money to support the caravan of refugees traveling across Mexico rather than sending troops to the border?
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Today was a remarkable day. I had the privilege of being a guest at the kindergarten graduation at Laker Memorial School in Kitgum District, Uganda, and it was unlike any kindergarten graduation I’ve ever experienced. It was a day-long community celebration with many speeches (including yours truly), dances, songs, a spelling bee, a brass band, gifts, and a huge feast. There was even a hilarious “make a fool of the white woman whose hips can’t move like that” dance that I may or may not show you evidence of later. I’ll share more photos and video once I have more data for uploading.

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To be honest, I have been somewhat reluctant to post photos from this trip on social media, for fear of looking like the tired cliche of “do-gooder white woman who saves Africa”. Know this - Africa does not need saving and I will never come here for that. The only things I have to offer here are friendship and financial resources in support of their leadership and vision. I am here, resolutely, with humility and a learning posture, receiving, with deep gratitude, the beautiful hospitality of the people of Kitgum District. I believe in finding ways to support more equitable distribution of resources, but I do not believe in the need for western interference.

 

Nope, these hips don’t move like that. (But DAMN was it fun trying!)

Nestar, on the other hand, is a seasoned pro

 

Those kids though! Whew!

Even the toddler can shake it better than the white lady.

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It was a privilege living in community with Nestar’s family in Kitgum District, Uganda, this week. I was well fed and cared for (even my laundry got done), and I’m happily taking home a jar full of peanut butter from their farm.

The family compound.Nestar’s sister and niece making the best chapati I’ve ever tasted.More family members preparing the meet for supperNestar’s sister washing my laundry. How she worked bent over like this for about an hour is beyond me.The “kid’s’ table” at lunch timeEnough chapati for everyone!My laundry on the line.

(19-11-2018) Nestar tells me that I have now had the “true African experience”. After a twelve hour journey that should have taken six, we arrived in our destination in Kampala just as the sun was rising. To say that the night was eventful would be an understatement. It included a broken-down car on the side of the road in the middle of nowhere in the pitch dark in a thunderstorm (in an area known to have roadside bandits), a lot of creative thinking and negotiating over cell phones to try to find us another solution, a long and cramped bus ride that brought us to downtown Kampala at 3 a.m., failed technology that meant that the transportation we had arranged (because taxis in Kampala in the middle of the night may not be trustworthy) had not come to meet us, two more hours of sitting in the bus (because it was safer than waiting anywhere else) waiting for a driver, and finally getting lost on the way to our host’s house. In the end, we are all safe (including the live chicken we were transporting with us), and we have an interesting story to tell.