Map of Uganda

Map of Uganda
The Uganda Kampala Mission includes Uganda, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Burundi and Southern Sudan. Our assignment covers all the areas except Ethiopia.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Actually, a lot of help from our friends and relatives. Many of them in the U.S. send us supplies like reading glasses, children’s books, candy, pinewood cars, dolls, etc. You can’t imagine how much joy these small things bring to the kids here. Many of them have never had a toy as we think of them. Recently we got a package which included some balloons. So, we decided to buy the ingredients for ice cream floats and have a party with the kids at a nearby school, during their break.

We had made some hand puppets on one of our projects to teach hygiene in schools, so we started with some stories (complete with puppet accompaniment). The kids had a great time reading the stories.

Next,it was time to hand out the balloons.

It did not take long for the excitement to start. The contest was on to see whose would fly the highest.

Then it was time to get down to the serious business of ice cream floats.

Life doesn’t get much better than this.

The next day we went to a school where we are starting a new project. It is not as fortunate as the first. The school is deep in the forest of the Nakaseke District about 30 miles from Kampala. The villagers have built a mud brick classroom which is falling down.

Their latrine is also mud brick, full and beginning to collapse. The village had purchased supplies to build a new latrine. We are not allowed to construct classroom buildings…but we can build latrines (complete with a 45 foot deep pit).

So, we built a six stance latrine and they will use their supplies to build a new classroom building. Then, we will install a rainwater catchment system with a 10,000 liter tank.

This is what the almost finished latrine looks like…

Complete with a new design we are trying out for a hand washing station.

When all the work is finished, we will take the ice cream float-balloon-puppet party here also. A heart-felt thanks to all of our friends for your contributions. They have brought a smile to many a face!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


We are involved a lot with our new project to build protective structures at natural springs. This time of the year is the long rainy season. Most of our springs are in remote villages about 50 kilometers outside Kampala. The roads to the sites are beautiful with flowering trees. They can also be exciting. Sometimes we have been close to vertical, but Art has done a good job of staying on the road… so far!

This part of Uganda is lush and green with dense forest.

This site is in the forest away from any village center and will serve about 300 people

We were asked by a village to protect this spring because a large Python is coming out of the forest into the spring at night and making the water muddy. They are afraid that it will get one of the children when they go for water….a reminder that we are actually in Africa!

This is the structure being built at “Python Spring”.

The water is now protected and much cleaner. The villagers have hired two Congolese snake hunters to catch and remove the Python from the forest. The villagers say it is 15-20 feet long and we have offered to pay for a picture when they find it. That will make a great blog photo!

This is one of the larger spring structures we have under construction. It will have four pipes and a flow of about 100 liters/minute. The average flow from a borehole well is about 12 liters/minute. When electricity eventually comes to this area, a flow this large can be pumped to the entire village.

On another day we visited a school for the blind near the headwaters of the Nile River. They are in need of Braille machines and paper.

We also toured a facility in Jinja that manufactures Trike style hand-crank wheelchairs. We are hoping to get approval from Salt Lake to order some of these before the end of the year. If we can have them made locally, it will save us the cost of having them shipped here from the U.S.

Elaine served as “test pilot” for one of the Trikes. However, despite her protest, she was not allowed onto the open road.

As part of the Spring Project, we are building a latrine and installing a rain water catchment system at thirty two schools in the out- lying villages.

Elaine was surrounded by some of the 800 children at this school. Three hundred of the children board at the school also. We are always amazed at the number of children in Uganda.

Art performed his usual duty as group photographer. With this many kids, it is impossible to take an empty photo of the school buildings.

This is what the finished product looks like…not something Frank Lloyd Wright would build, but functional.

On the drive back to Kampala Friday afternoon we got to follow this truck, headed for market, over-loaded with sacks of charcoal. Because it was raining heavily the truck did not have the usual supply of ten guys riding on top of the sacks. We are always amazed that these trucks ever manage to make it to town.

Another adventurous week gone by….and we love it!

"Everything must have a beginning"

"Everything must have a beginning"
Children at an orphanage in Entebbe, Uganda. There are so many children here it is incredible; there are orphans everywhere. The people take them in and it is not unusual to see families struggling with 8-10 children. We talked to a woman yesterday who has taken in twelve children. She said, "sometimes I feel sad that I cannot do more, but everything must have a beginning". We have decided to use that as our personal reminder to guide our actions here as we try to help.