Project starts: Monday
Location: Jinja District, Uganda
Minimum duration: 2 weeks
Hailed as the “Pearl of Africa” by Winston Churchill, Uganda is a country of staggering beauty – a lush green land whose stunning and diverse countryside supports incredible wildlife – Lions, Elephants, Cape Buffalo, Leopards, Rhinoceros, and half of the world’s population of Mountain Gorillas and Chimpanzees. Become part of a rural community village and experience true East African culture.
This is a project that SAVE runs in collaboration with Soft Power Education ( SPE), a British registered charity and Ugandan NGO. Since 1999 they have been working with communities in Uganda with a mission of “Improving quality of life through education” and vision for “ An empowered and self-sustaining society taking responsibility for its own development”.
You will be introduced to the different projects in your orientation. This is your volunteer experience and the timetable can be suited to where you feel most comfortable. Below is a description of our different projects.
Pre Schools: 8.30 – 12.30
We suggest volunteers run small group activities with the children. This gives the children an opportunity to have some more quality time (usually they are in a class of 30!). Once the school day has finished then volunteers can speak with the teachers about activities for the next day. We do have resources at the pre-schools but we do encourage volunteers to bring things with them if they have specific activities in mind (such as art or sports games).
Amagezi Education Centre: 09:00-17:00
Here the volunteers can assist in the lesson running, although there is sometimes difficulties with language and so often our volunteers get stuck in making resources for the lessons – which is of course extremely vital.
After School Club: 15:00-18:00
We run an afterschool club at one of our residential Special Educational Needs units. The volunteers go up and run group activities with the children – an absolutely fantastic programme where both the volunteers and the children gain a lot. Again we have lots of resources for this in terms of sports equipment, but if the volunteers want to do anything different/more specific, they are very welcome to bring things with them (such as art materials).
SEN Clinic: 8:30 – 17:00
The clinic actually runs throughout the week but Friday is by far the busiest day and so
volunteers are very much welcomed on this day. The clinic operates both occupational and physiotherapy, as well as small teaching activities. Volunteers can assist with the physiotherapy and keep children busy that are waiting for their therapy. There is also a clinic at the Kybirwa Children’s Centre that helps several children with special educational needs at the moment. During this clinic volunteers can assist with the teaching aspect of the clinic, running group games and doing basic maths and literacy activities.
School Infrastructure: all day
This programme can be run on any day, but we do it as an induction day for all new arrivals and so have incorporated it into your volunteers timetables on those days also. It’s a fantastic way to get out into the village, and will also be a great way for them to meet all the new arrivals. Painting the schools can be one of the activities done during this programme.
- Airport pick up is included if the flight arrives on Monday before 4 pm
- Breakfast & Dinner at the accommodation
- 24 hour support and supervisor on project
- Donation to the NPO to assist with projects
- Certificate of appreciation
You will be staying at Felix & Gertrude’s Guest House in Jinga. This guest house is located in the heart of Bujagali Village and is a stones throw away from SPE’s Amagezi Education Centre. Beds including mattresses are provided and bedrooms are shared with your fellow volunteers and crew. There is a garden/plot of land to relax in after school. There is also a living room that may be used upon invite by the family. Storage will be limited and your backpack must have a lockable compartment in it.
At your accommodation you will have a local cook who will cook at the house on charcoal stoves. The food will be of good local standard. Breakfast will be a simple affair consisting largely of bread, jam and fruit, and dinner will consist of good quality local food- this being any combination of; rice, potatoes including sweet potatoes, ugali (a maize meal stiff porridge), chapattis, spaghetti, cabbage, spinach, beans, seasonal vegetables, eggs, beef stew, with sauces of a tomato base. Most meals will be vegetarian.
Attention: Transfers to the Projects are not included. Here is a short overview of the prices:
All prices are estimated and from Mama Flo’s accommodation. We recommend getting private hire taxis for any of the longer journeys.
- Buwenda Pre School (BPS): 30 minutes’ walk/2,000 UGX (Boda: one way)
- Kyabirwa Children Centre (KCC): 5 minutes’ walk
- Kyomya Residential Unit: 10,000 UGX (Boda: one way)/50,000 UGX (Private hire return)
- Jinja Town Office: 6,000 UGX (Boda: one way)/50,000 UGX (Private hire return)
- Amagezi Education Centre: 1 minute walk
- Walukuba West Special Needs School (WW): 6,000 UGX (Boda: one way)
Please note: This project will be closed from 15th December 2019 – 3rd January 2020.
Information about the schools and the children
- Most of the children can speak English yet their home language is mainly Lusoga.
- The children live in underdeveloped areas.
- Children in the program range from 4-15 years old.
- School terms:
Term 1: runs from the beginning of February until the end of April
Term 2: runs from mid May until the beginning of August
Term 3: runs from the beginning of September until the beginning of December
The Government of Uganda currently relies heavily on input from externa lsources, particularly NGOs, to meet the basic needs of its population. Although the government is very supportive of the work that we do, at SPE we work with a view to reducing dependency by equipping people with the skills and resources they need to break the cycle of poverty for themselves.To date their work has been largely focused on infrastructure in the primary education sector, however, in recent years we have begun to tackle many more of the factors that contribute to poverty, including;
- Teaching primary school children transferable skills with our in-school LEAP programme which focuses on: food security and skills & empowerment.Supporting Special Educational Needs awareness;
- Supporting Special Educational Needs children through education, physiotherapy, occupational therapy and training sessions
- Running Livelihood programmes by providing the tools and expertise to empowers communities
- Promoting environmental conservation through education.
- Providing pre-school education for 180 children of the most in-need children in the local area
Fundamental to their success in delivering beyond our original scope has been the ongoing and sustained support from visitors to Uganda. From the outset SPE has aimed to facilitate partnerships and friendships between visiting tourists and the local community, providing an opportunity for travellers to contribute in a meaningful way. SPE channels the enthusiasm of overland truckers, visiting university and school groups and independent travellers to assist with programmes. Volunteers are often so inspired by the work they have done and the change that they have been able to effect that they continue to fundraise for Soft Power Education when they’re turn home. This ensures that we can pay for skilled Ugandan staff, such as foremen and builders for construction, pre-school teachers, physiotherapist, occupational therapist, programme managers and much more.
NB: At our Uganda project there is a chance you may be the only volunteer which will give you a unique opportunity to be a valued member of the community. However, if you are looking for a project with many volunteers, let us know and we can suggest an alternative.
Physical Challenge level
- Learn new things and interact with community members/other volunteers in a Ugandan community
- Become part of a Basoga community and learn about their culture
- Help with community initiatives that will change people’s lives
- Make a difference to a community
- Police clearance
- Basic level of competency in English
- Copy of return flight itinerary
- Acceptance subject to availability
A.M: Induction at Amagezi Education Centre
A.M: Kyabirwa Pre-School
P.M: Afterschool activities at Kyomya
A.M: Buwenda Pre-School
P.M: Amagezi Education Centre
A.M: SEN-class at Kyabirwa
P.M: Afterschool activities at Kyomya
A.M: SEN-class at Kyabirwa
P.M: Volunteer Meeting