Monday, May 21, 2012

Bukweke village, Don Cheadle, First things first

Guess where I went yesterday?  Paradise  village.  Okay, so that's not the actual name of the village but with how green and luscious the area was, it might as well have been named Paradise village.  I have pics added to this post so you'll see for yourself. :) Here is the documentation of our visit to Bukweke village:

We met with a man named Sale.  He's essentially Ugandan Don Cheadle.  He has a big kind smile and he raises his eyebrows a lot when he smiles which somehow makes you trust him and love him more.  He's the principal of the school and is a really good man.  Tuition is SUPER cheap for the students and if they can't afford to pay in cash each semester, he allows them to pay during the semester--even if they have to pay in wood or chickens.  He just really values education and does whatever he can to help people obtain it.  I love that.
We visited a couple of the classrooms and the children are sooo lovely.  They're happy and kind and so eager to learn.  It's beautiful.  After we toured the school and met the kids we took a walk to where we'd stay if we came up there to help him for a few days.  These are pictures of our walk to our sleeping quarters.  It was insanely beautiful.  So green.  I need to get close-ups of those mountains back there because there are gardens on the steepest of slopes.  It's beautiful to look at but I don't envy their farming hours of the day on that steep mountain.
We stopped and took a pic.  The two mzungus with me are ladies from the program who'll be working in that village.
We were waiting for Sale to talk to his aunt (her house was on the walk from our sleeping quarters back to the school) and I saw these cute little kids across the way.  So I went to pay them a visit.  Maybe I'm just a softy but their smiles melt my heart every time.
Here's the rest of the fam.  Grandma and grandkids...I imagine.  They're such beautiful people.
I just try to give you a glimpse of the extraordinary people that I casually pass on my walking paths throughout my day.  These are common occurences.  Different people, but always extraordinary.

Sale wants us teaching math, physics, french, and leadership classes.  Ryan is a chemical engineer so he'll be teaching the math and physics classes.  Holly lived in France for 9 months so she'll be teaching french...though I'll possibly be able to help or take turns with her.  And I'm sooo excited about the leadership classes.  This is the village where they have a problem with girls getting pregnant at 12, 13 or 14 years old.  Sale said he thinks it's a matter of self-esteem. They don't actually believe that they can finish their education and do something.  So they marry someone for status and to be taken care of (at a sublimely young age).  He introduced us to the girls telling them that we graduated from college, what we studied and he introduced us as "professionals".  He said, "I don't want you kids to ever say, "I went to school for a brief time."  I want you to say, "I finished school and this is what I studied"."  I'm really excited to work with these girls and help them see value in themselves and realize their ability to finish their education and take care of themselves.

Sale said, "Do you know what "first things first" means?" He was addressing a class of about 12-14 year olds at this time.  He said, "It means that education comes first and sex comes after.  If you're not doing those things in that order then you're doing the last thing first.  It's not right. "  He told us later that in a school of 400 children that are 20 and younger, he believes about 70% of them are sexually active.  So...we'll probably be teaching some sex ed classes because they don't know anything about it and therefore are having extremely young pregnancies that drop out of school.  I feel like we can really help out here and I'm so excited about it.


  1. What a beautiful village. Sounds like a wonderful place to work. Do you think this village is where you will be most of the time now?

  2. Your pics take my breath away. :)