August 21st, 2013


Mbarara is a town that knows how to give people a warm welcome. Me (Jan) and Anna arrived in Mbarara on Saturday after a handover with Fran and Andy in Kampala. With a lot of information about people I hadn’t met yet and schools I had never heard of, I arrived in Mbarara and was greeted by the great Project Workers and the last remaining Coordinator, Beth. Wasting no time, we headed out to have a lovely meal.Even though I had been travelling around Kenya for three weeks, the stories of what our Project Workers got up to during their holiday week stirred up a lot of envy in me. Tales of idyllic lakes on the Rwandan border and chimpanzee trecking, stories of scaled mountains in the Rwenzori range, and lots of nights under the stars made for good welcome stories.

Genevieve, Beth and Paul also went on what I would guess is EPAfrica’s first appearance on Grace Radio, a local radio station. With a phone-in session and an interview, the three chatted about the nuances of heritage, our work in Uganda, and adapting to the African environment – an incredible opportunity to promote our work here.

The next day, we had our mid-summer meeting. In the Mbarara heat in our small apartment, Project Workers and Researchers showed impressive energy. The excitement was high about the remainder of the project, but with only three weeks left the team also felt the pressure of completing a lot of initiatives and projects in not a lot of time. There are several careers days happening this week and next, and many of our trios are training their girls on how to make reusable sanitary pads.

Beth and Paul left us this morning, heading over to Kenya and the UK respectively. Having spent the last few hours perusing the impressive information that Paul has put together and being introduced to Mbarara and our friends here by Beth, I can only say that they’ve been incredibly helpful and thank them for all their hard work!