After a gruelling flight to Uganda through the night, I drowsily stepped out of the car at the end of the inbound journey with very little going on in my exhausted mind. Immediately, I was greeted by swarms of grinning children outside the S.O.U.L. Shack, who sang to welcome me – undoubtedly the most surprising wake-up I’ve ever received. Yet the incredible hospitality remained as enthusiastic and genuine until the moment I left Kyabirwa, not just from the children but from the entire community, which included the S.O.U.L. volunteers.
I arrived in Bujagali with Tom, another volunteer from the UK, and Nicolas, our driver. We were greeted by dozens of S.O.U.L. pre-primary students, who sang and danced for us. After meeting the S.O.U.L. staff and getting a brief tour of the S.O.U.L. Shack, we walked down the village road to meet our host families. I immediately fell in love with Sal and Mama Musa and their children. They welcomed me into their home and made me feel like part of the family.
Today was a remarkable day. A day I could have never planned. A few hours of sheer joy and excitement. A few minutes of heart racing anxiety. A few seconds of uncertainty. An afternoon with an incredible outcome.
As they say in Uganda, "You are most welcome" to the S.O.U.L. Foundation blog!
This is a forum we will use to share personal stories and experiences from a variety of S.O.U.L. Foundation stakeholders. Our first post, written by our Founder and CEO Brooke Stern, recounts her experience delivering a baby for the first time after stopping by to visit the local midwife in Bujagali- a day she will never forget!
We will continue to share stories from our staff, volunteers and the community members with whom we work in Uganda, so keep visiting to learn about our work through the personal reflections of the individuals whose lives are impacted by S.O.U.L. Foundation.
Jenna Rogers, Past Executive Director
The people of Uganda live day to day. It is for survival that they do live. They eat to live, and NEVER live to eat. They don't have a chance to save their money. They aren't educated about even putting away 1,000 Ush (50 cents) per day as that can work to their benefit, when in two weeks they have 14,000 ush saved ($7). They are not IGNORANT. They just don't know. But I can assure you ALL about one thing, they want to learn!