Long time, no blog. That’s not due to lack of things to write about, it is rather the opposite. Ever since we arrived in Rwanda in September 2009 we heard rumours of Danish long and short-term volunteers based in Uganda. Finally, we were to meet them. The Danes arrived in Kigali and we took them with us to Butare to show them why we are here.
Sharing some serious photo advice before going to the field. Louise Kryger and Harald.
The first thing we did was to have a meeting. It might sound boring, but it was actually the most fruitful discussion I have in a long time. It was super interesting to hear about their projects, how they conduct their trainings and not to forget their views on the way we do these things here in Rwanda.
There are always curious children wherever you go in Rwanda. Here, in the ricefields.
The entire second day was spent in the field. Together with our local contact, Robert, we visited the OVC project in Gisagara run by the Norwegian Red Cross, as well as an Agasozi Ndatwa Model Village in the same area.
In between receiving visitors and going to Uganda, I had a planning session for a workshop on IHL to be held on Gatagara Secondary school.
On Wednesday, after a lot of stress with regards to what are the correct procedures when we are going on an official visit, invitation letters, and budget approval, we were on our way. A 12-hour bus to the Ugandan capital Kampala flew by. The first project we saw was a Life Planning Skills (the Danish/Ugandan main project – how to plan for a better future with regards to different subjects like sexual health, family planning, harmful cultural practices, school and work) training in the district of Luweero. Ane and Brenda did an amazing job with inspiring their audience.
Finally in Uganda! Louise, Christin and Harald in front of the Uganda Red Cross headquarters.
Then we travelled north. We were very excited about going to the North, where Louise and Christin would show us a newly developed manual on conflict management and peaceful coexistence and how this would be disseminated. What makes it even more interesting is that the North of Uganda is an area that has been struggling with civil war, the abduction of minors to be used in the armed forces and other tribal disturbances over the last 20-so years. The disseminations we experienced in Apac were amazing to see. The level of skills and commitment was very high – and I felt very inspired.
Harald checking out the Life Planning Skills material in Luweero during a training.
Volunteers being facilitators during a training in Apac.
Besides working, we were also able to experience Kampala together with the Danes as well as going rafting on the Nile. Uganda was an amazing week, and I am looking forward to the further cooperation with the Danes in the times to come.
Conflict management training under a tree outside Apac in Northern Uganda.