Tukku Sanyu Kidde – Welcome to my blog

Tukku Sanyu Kidde – Welcome to my blog

I'm Simon and I'm a volunteer in Uganda.

My project is called Global Village Network. We are based on a Farm north-east of Kampala.

Our objectives are to fight poverty by improving sanitation, employment agricultural output and education in this area.

I'm staying here for a year and I'm teaching at a primary school in Kalanam.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Hey there!

So, let me tell you whats new:
While I was in Germany I did some fund-raising for schoolbooks for my school.
Actually it's quite wrong to say “I” , because there were too many people who contributed and helped,  so that I should rather speak of “we”.
We organized a stall at a flee market, collected some money on birthdays and made a coffee and cake sale in our backyard.
Our overall goal was to collect 1000€ which would have enabled us to buy a schoolbook for every pupil in every subject.
Surprisingly we ended up with 1107€ !!!!!!
Hell Yeah !!!!!
Really, none of us had expected anything like this.
 I was hoping for maybe 500 – 600 € and we would've ended up with that amount if not for the generous donation of 500€ by Mr. Behrens, Thank you so much!!!
My thanks also to everybody else who donated or helped me, most notably my girlfriend, my parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles, my friends Felix and Simon, the bakeries that donated the cakes and the  “Weltladen Rheine” for their splendid Ugandan coffee, plus so many more who would fill the whole  page to name them now: Thank You !!!

Now, collecting the money is the one thing, using it the right way is another:
Back in Uganda I first had to make sure that we have the right structures and a good organization for the books, so they won't get spoiled.
The organization has been quite easy: we just give every book a number and every pupil a fixed number, so they can be held responsible (and feel responsible) for any loss or damage.
Of course they can't take them home:
It just isn't possible! After a week half of them would've gone missing...
As for the structure, the school has just build a new building, which will be used as the new office and the old office is our new library. I used around 30€ ( 90 000 Ugandan Shillings) to buy three bags of cement to speed up the construction and now we have a nice new office and a good library.
The only thing missing now was the books.
Easy, right? Just go to a publisher and buy them. That's what I thought too...
But, as too often in life the easy things are unnecessarily complicated:
Naturally, we wanted to buy the schoolbooks which follow the syllabus and went to the first publisher.
They had schoolbooks which follow it, but unfortunately just English and math for P4. So we bought them and kept on looking for the others. The next two publishers just had the ones following the old syllabus, so we didn't buy any. After some searching we finally found one (MK publishers) that had most of them and we bought them. At the moment we're only missing the Luganda and some R.E. (Religious Education) books, but to be honest, I don't know if there are any...
Well, we'll keep looking.
The good thing is that we're still having some money left  ( around 800 000 Ugandan Shillings) that we can use to buy some extra curricula materials, like toys for the baby classes, some games, music instruments or sport materials.

That's it for my work, so lets continue with the personal stuff:
There's a new volunteer in Kalungu (my village) also from Germany and the same sending organization!
And that's definitely making village life a little bit more exciting :)
In addition we now have some internet here at the project, its not the fastest or clearest connection, but it's internet and that means that I can now keep you all up to date at least every two weeks!!!
I know … most of you don't think I'll be really writing that often and I also have my doubts …
But I'll try !!! :D

So, see you in two weeks then ;)
Bye Bazungu.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Sunday, 10. June

Good Morning !!
I just got up and thought: Damn, I should write something for my blog.
No, actually I thought: Damn, I MUST write something for my blog!!! - it has been months since my last post and I'm truly sorry. The only excuse I have, is that I've been terribly lazy.
Well – It's not even an excuse.
Anyway, lets talk about whats happening in Uganda:
Not too much actually, concerning me at least – just life as usual.
A few things went down though: Jessi (my girlfriend in case anybody doesn't know) visited me for around 3 weeks and we've had a great time!
Did a lot of traveling: We spent a lot of time in Entebbe, which was really relaxed and beautiful.
Entebbe is a really quiet and green city, situated directly at lake Victoria with a beautiful botanical garden and zoo. There's also a heap of nice restaurants and resorts – not the cheapest places though...
Then we spent some time on Seesse Island – it's the closest thing to paradise I've ever experienced :D
We stayed at the (infamous) Horn-bill Camp, run by 2 old German Hippies and you get the feeling of being in the late sixties: Small wooden huts with the outside walls painted with many colorful pictures, directly at the beach, while still at the outskirts of the forest.
To anybody who might come by Sesse at any given time: Try to hitchhike with a pickup across the Island – the view while standing on the back of the pickup and the feeling of freedom that you experience are just amazing!!!
Enough praises for Sesse, let's get on: From Seesse we took the fairy to Masaka, where we spent only one night and then went back to Kampala.
There we met up with some of the other volunteers and a group of mostly teachers – we were around 30 in total and took a big bus to Murchinson Falls National Park, were we saw the falls (just mind-blowing, so massive and impressive) and did a game drive where we saw all kinds of animals:
Giraffes, antelopes, elephants, buffaloes, all kinds of cool birds, but no lions unfortunately.
The big downside to the trip was, that Jessi got really sick and couldn't enjoy herself and I was too worried to enjoy myself most of the time...
We managed to get some treatment quite fast, so she was better soon. (:
Then she had too go again – far to early !!! :(
And life turned back to normal...
Well, there really hasn't been much happening since then, except for me falling sick with bronchitis, gastronometities (or something like that, the name was hard to remember) and malaria at the same time.
Kinda sucked, but a few days and various meds later I was back on track.
And thats were I'm at the moment.
Before I forget, the web-page of Global Village Network should be up by now, so if you're interested check it out! I'll put a link somewhere for you - Some of the contend might not be up jet though...
Well, thats all for now.
Bye, see you next time :D

Ohh... Almost forgot: I'll be in Germany next month, so come and visit me!!!!

Friday, March 30, 2012


I woke up and I heard the sound of rain. It was around 5 O'clock.
I thought: “Shit! I got to go to the toilet.”
For your information, our toilet is outside...
Now, while I was lying in my bed, trying to think of a solution, I noticed a unusually high number of insects crawling around my bed.
Annoyed and disgusted I opened my eyes.
First of all the light outside on the balcony was on. This is quite normal, because we always ( if we have power) leave it on for security reasons.
The second thing I noticed was the vibrating curtain above my head.

. . .

“Why the **** is it vibrating???????”
Before really figuring out what was happening some basic instincts told me to get my head out of reach of this god forsaken curtain.
So I lay down the other side of the bed and I observed.
And I listened. To the rain.
There was a monotone drumming sound against the window in combination with another unidentifiable sound.
This and the increasing number of crawling things under and on my blanket, finally made me realize:
What invaded the room and brought my curtain to life, was neither the devil nor some evil spirits
                - it was a giant swarm of flying insects.

More precisely ants, flying ones! - How I was told later that day.
So after a five minute period of shock, I got up, trying to find a bug-free place.
First I turn on the light. Bad Idea - More Bugs.
So I go outside.
I've never seen something similar.
The biggest, most horrific swarm of insects I ever saw, each of them fighting for a spot on the light bulb.
What really confused me though, was the fact that a group of people was exactly in the middle of this crawling and flying ocean of ants.
It just made no sense. But since I was still on the run, I first of all walked abut 20 meters away from the scene – thats about as much as it took to get away from the worst (there were still some ants around).
I took a deep breath and tried to figure everything out.
OK, first things first: I still have to go to the toilet.
After finishing my business, I returned back to unsolved puzzle in front of our house.
Now I `can see what the people are doing:
They are collecting them. They are collecting flying ants.
Guess what we had for Lunch.

After removing the wings...

The people collecting the ants.

They show me their catch.

 Our balcony in the morning.
 A battlefield... 

 Close ups!

Mhhhhhhh.... Tasty!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

no idea how I should name this post... i'll come up with a name later

  • O sibi otya nyabo?
  • Bulungi sebo, o sibi otya sebo?
  • Bulungi nyabo, jebale!
  • Kale Sebo, nawe jebale!
  • Kale Nyabo!

“What is this supposed to mean?”
“Why does this guy keep on writing in a language that I don't understand?”
Thats probably what most of you are thinking right now, and why I'm doing it?
  • I have no clue.
But anyway this is how people great each other in Luganda.
It was really kinda hard to get the hang of it at first, but slowly I'm getting it.
I can buy stuff in shops and do some small talk without using any English!
It's just the numbers that sometimes get me:
  • Sebo, Rolex sente mmeka? (Mister, how much is that Rolex?)
  • Nkumi Biri. ( 1500 )
  • Whats that in English???

I still can't really manage to follow or have a proper conversation, but I'm positive that I'll get there!

Now what am I doing at the moment?
I'm a primary school teacher and I teach English to P4 and P3, Science to P4 and spelling to P1 and P2.
The school is really small, same as the classes (10-15 students) – what I'm really happy about, cause its already really hard to keep them under control!
We have 3 Teachers (4 including me) at the moment, which is why two classes are always taught together. This makes it really hard finding an appropriate level that everybody understands, but does not bore half of them to death.
Also do we not have enough school material. For example: In English we have three pupil books and none for the teacher. Since three books are almost impossible to share between 15 pupils we use them as teacher books.
The really bad thing about it is that we have to write everything on the board, whether it is an exercise, or a story that you want to read. Do you have any idea about how long it takes for a class to copy a page long story from the blackboard?
- You can plan one or two hours for that!
Apart from school material, the lack of knowledge in English in many kids makes it really hard, since my Luganda ain't that good yet, to explain new kinds of exercises, especially in the lower classes like P1 & 2.
Enough for now!
And write some comments!!!

We're building a fence (:

                                         At the farm next to us - we own a few cows there


People trying to catch small fish

Dancan at the well 

Our baby cow :D

Inside the school - P4 and P3

A frog...

Inside the hen house