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Report from Kyarumba, Uganda - by BBI Volunteer Aaron Silver-Pell

Posted: Sat, October 22, 2016 | By: Volunteer

by Aaron Silver-Pells

Do you work hard? I am very sure you do.

(Aaron is a Brighter Brains Institute volunteer stationed in Kyarumba)

Everywhere I look in the world, I see people who are working incredibly hard to provide for their families and plan for the future. People make sure to get the best education possible so that they can do skilled jobs in a technologically advanced economy.

Unfortunately, not all hard work is equally rewarding and nowhere is this more apparent than in rural Uganda. Here, money is scarce and education is low. The average wage in the country is listed at 2000$/year, but this is deceptive because it combines the wages of well-paid elites with average citizens. Government employees had to go on strike to increase their pay to 120$ a month and they are considered some of the best paid people. People do lots of hard physical labor hoeing, carrying coffee, water and wood, but many times this work is inadequate to provide food for themselves and their family.

People here get by many with one or two meals a day or even sometimes one meal every two days. I have talked to many people who willingly work for 13 cents to 25 cents a day and they consider themselves lucky because at least they can find work.

children at Mughete Junior Humanist School
children at Mughete Junior Humanist School

The teachers at Mughete Humanist Primary School are incredibly hard working and patriotic. The rent that they pay is a measly 6$ a month, however many months they cannot afford that. The reason is that they are dependent upon the school fees of the farmers in the region, most of whom cannot read or write. Facilities are inadequate with buildings that let the rain in (in a country that gets drenched during the school year). Many times, parents would rather their children work on the farms. The teachers do not want this however, and even though many are struggling, they work very hard to make sure each the children are educated so that the future can be better than the present.

When I talk to the children, they brim with excitement about the possibilities of being engineers, nurses, doctors, teachers and scientists. When I ask what they like and enjoy, they all say “education.” Even though they are young, they know that education is the key to success and they are committed to lifting themselves out of the desperate poverty that their parents are afflicted with.

Mughete Junior Humanist School
Mughete Junior Humanist School

The children, however, cannot realize their dreams without a little help from you and other people in developed countries who have a little spare money. Without financial support, many are going to find themselves lifted out of school by their parents who would rather have the children do hard labor on farms.

We at Brighter Brains Institute are committed to providing a better future for these children, which is why we are working to get sponsorship for these children so that they can pay for school and also so that we can feed them lunch which they may not get at home.

Mughete Junior Humanist School has purchased a small plot adjacent to the school which will help to provide food to the children; their plan is to purchase goats (BBI is helping with this) which can breed and can be sold to raise money for the school. This is necessary in the region, because the government is not committed to making sure everyone receives an education.

I thank you in advance for your continuing support,

Aaron Silver-Pell


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