(Adam helped with the construction of school facilities in Lwemuna, Mbale district, during December 2008)
Volunteering in eastern Uganda was just how I’d hoped it would be. The setting was really rural and genuine, away from the tourist traps of the cities. The people were fantastic and it was a real honour to get to meet, and work with, some of them in their homelands. One of the main differences to my preconceptions was that the local people were a lot more optimistic and upbeat than I had expected. Additionally, some of them were also far more educated, intelligent and knowledgeable than I would have previously have given them credit for. They understood their situation and were making attempts to better it. The landscape and environment was really nice – very lush and green and a good temperature. The food was definitely an ‘experience’ but it’s very useful to see how developing nations get by. The project was certainly well-needed, with 700 children trying to share one school building, and there was a very real sense of ‘making a difference’ that you could visually see. From this project I take with me a sense of satisfaction at spreading the volunteer ethos as well as memories of a wonderful land that has a lot more going for it than I would have previously have thought.
All in all, it was a great experience – just what I wanted to get out of Africa.
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