Thursday, October 30, 2014

New Kindles arrive

The year 2014 is a tech  year at Rubanda Solidarity School. The Yamba Abaana USA in Partnership with Yamba Abaana Uganda through Rubanda Solidarity are determined to improve the culture of reading at the school by introducing E-Kindle readers. Its  exciting.

The pilot project was initiated in February this same year when a group  of five representatives from the Yamba Abaana USA visited the school. Four E-Kindles were donated by some of the members of the team to start the pilot projects. The results have been incredibly amazing  which have attracted more E-Kindle donations.  Few months down the road, another generous couple donated more seven kindles which have been immediately loaded with 100 books each and shaped to the school. Few weeks later, the E-Kindles arrived at the school and were received with unbelievable joy and excitement by every one at the school. In the photos below you will be able to share that excitement when Brother Kitone is delivering the E-Kindles from Kampala to the head students.

It must be noted that after few months using the first four E-Kindles an evaluation was conducted by the responsible teachers of the project of which Diana gave its summary.Please find the summary of their report below the photos.
7 E-Kindles of Second Phase delivered at the school

Groups set up to maximize the use of limited E-Kindles 

Teacher Immaculate & Bonaventure instruct the kids on E-Kindle tech. 


Below is the enrollment of pupils studying E-Kindles.

Gr.3    39
Gr.4     47
Gr.5      36
Total    122.

Impact of the project to the School and the community.

On the side of learners, they have been helped to know how to operate the kindles. They know and assist students putting them on and off and searching for the content.

They have known how to use kindles by searching for titles and selecting books of their choice to read.
Learners have improved on fluency because they learn the meaning of new wards under the guidance of the teacher.
They have improved a skill of sharing among themselves because they read in groups hence discussing about new ideas.
They have developed a value of articulation of wards through considering or using the dictionary which is in the kindle.
Learners have liked schooling because they do not want to miss classes in order not to miss kindle lessons.
On the side of teachers, they have been helped to know how to handle learners using English because learners do understand English.
Kindles have helped to promote learner- teacher good relationship because learners are free to ask teachers questions concerning kindles.
Kindles have promoted learner- centered during teaching and learning process     among the learners.

Challenges being faced by the learners and teachers.

1.    The number of Kindles is very small compared to the number of pupils we have. Learners wish to use the kindles but they are not enough and some end up not getting a chance to touch on them.
2.     Due to the inadequacy of kindles, teachers take a lot of time trying to explain to pupils.

Lastly, we continue to thank the members of Yamba Abaana US who have initiated the kindle project which has promoted good things to our learners and teachers as well. We pray that God may continue to guide us all to be able to cooperate together to for the benefits of our children to reach their goals.
May God bless you all.

Diana Orishaba

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Reap what you sow

This week of Oct. 30th 2014 marks the final week of our 26 grade seven candidates to be in our school. They are moving through their final days to their Uganda Primary Leaving Examination (UPLE) exams. It  will be for three days starting with the briefing day on Monday . The exams consist of four major subjects of Sciences, Social Studies, Mathematics and English. The end of these exams will  also mean the end of their a primary curriculum to higher education commonly known as secondary education.  Around this period of the year, many people are excited as kids aspire to higher steps in their life. However there is always a lot of anxiety of failing exams among  both parents, teachers and students. There is always an examination fever going on. Its  like football or soccer. There are always surprises of any kind. Though our candidates are smart,  they need  your unprecedented prayers. Please do respond to their humble request for prayers in this time of very great need.
Please, here below are some of the pictures taken during  Mass when children where in Rubanda parish when all candidates were invited to come forward for a blessing.

Our candidates Kneel in front of the Altar for a blessing on a Sunday before their exams Oct. 26.2014

Last touches of our candidates with St. Teresa's joint group discussion Oct. 2014

Monday, October 27, 2014

Water Is Life

Every morning at the assembly, our school children are reminded of how "water is life". They have to make sure they take care of water as much as they do for their life.

This  year is unique at our school because we are thinking and doing a lot of how to improve our water safety.   Rubanda community knows little about the difference between seasons of summer and winter. Because it has both seasons mixed together. However, water can be a real problem.  Our children can describe its burden since they feel the its pinch  more than any body. Sometimes they have to leave classes and walk miles away in search of water for their breakfast or a meal. They also know quite well how washing their clothes is a big headache when it comes to getting enough water. Actually the list of items required by the school from their the children's parents is a five liter jerrycan for water emergency. Each kid know exactly where to find when water emergency breaks out.  Other times these kids have to carry their clothes on their heads and go hunting for possible streams or water catchments in the neighborhood that are always health hazards.

There is some green light this year. The USA Yamba  Abaana has come in with an idea to make a difference. This difference is captured in two option: Renovating the old rain water harvesting system as the immediate solution and identifying new possible ways to get constant water supply like of having drilled water well. 

These ideas started to develop some years back when the current system was fixed. We are glad that this year  the Yamba Abaana US has come in with more focus and began raising funds at the beginning of this year. We are also pleased to let you know that the implementation that began few weeks ago is soon to be completed.
Thank you Yamba Abaana USA and to you all our friends who have made this possible. The renovated system can now supply water to more kids and for a longer period of time within a year. We estimate the new harvested water capacity to be able to cover over five months of  with normal rains. This means, there is still a great need to have other reliable sources of water to provide enough water security. 

Please enjoy some of the pictures taken during the renovation of the water harvesting  process.

Water tank of 5000 liters delivered  to the school: Oct 2014

Renovating the old system: Oct. 2014

Replacing  a 1500 tank with those 5000 one: Oct. 2014

Improving water harvesting with a 5000 bigger tank 

Making sure no drop of water is wasted: October 2014
Gutters are seen all over to make sure no drop is lost Oct. 2014

 Thank you all who contributed to this project. 

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Incredible Ugandan Animals Eat Kneeling!

July 26, 2014 will remain an unforgettable day to our Rubanda Solidarity School students of upper grades of 4-7 who had their study trip to both Mburo game park and Lake Mburo in Mbara district, Uganda.

The trip that began in the early morning hours of the day aboard two coaster buses was an amazing day for the students. Setting out of the school gate there is a narrow, dusty marrum road that kids use every day and know so well. A mile away is the highway road that links Uganda with DRC through Bunagana in the west and heads to Kabale and Mbarara towns in the east. Entering the highway was so amazing for the students.They all screamed for safety and invoked God's protection. Because, most of them had never been given a ride on a tarmacked road. They were full of excitement a midst screams for life as one of them shouted loud, "we are still young to die".

As they traveled through Kabale town they headed for Mbarara to Lake Mburo. At Lake Mburo their first eye contact was the strange animals that eat-kneeling. It was indeed their first time to see such strange animals. "They are so friendly animals", one of them called his friends.  Another child answered back, "they eat-kneeling and are friendly to children". Children know how curious and scary they can be when in the presence of animals with exposed teeth, as if ready to have their prey. "Its awesome", mentioned as she made a joyous jump.

The objectives of the study trip were an act of appreciation and farewell to the candidates of grade seven, an exposure to them and other higher grade students of 4-6. Moving out of ones village provides a sense of maturity and seeing things differently. It also a final opportunity to the finalists as they prepare for their final national exams. 
Some of the things they learn on their trip include; Animals and landscape, different types of infrastructure including roads and road signs. They also travel on water through the lakes, track animals in the game parks, visit national monuments and places of worship. They are also guided though issues of communication like bus parks in towns, post offices and banks as tools to use because soon they are to start their own navigation in life.

Students who were so amused when they say the kneel and eat animals could not hold their breath when they paused for a photo next to these animals as of they were part of their group. "I will never forget this", one of the students commented. After a one day's study tour, the students had an African traditional danced to refresh their spirits as they headed back to the school in the first watch of the night. Enjoy the pictures below.

Students & Staff pause for a group photo at lake Mburo on 7-28-2014

Friendly animals that eat- kneeling  at lake Mburo -Uganda 2014

Friendly animals that welcome the students  on their study  2014

Sleep standing animals at lake Mburo in Uganda 2014

Friday, May 9, 2014

Enjoy a trip to Rubanda through pictures Feb. 2014

I need better vision to see visitors, lovely friends.
Doves, symbols of Peace

Kids just need one click show
Quality education builds healthy relationships

Tomorrow's brains are here with Diana
Immaculate joins the kids to new tech.

Dr. Bruce & Fr. Dominic receive gifts fromYamba Abaana Uganda
Kids enjoy their leisure time

Leg or no leg Louis is a fan of soccer

More than curious
Dr. Bruce at work

Dr. Bruce mentors kids as coordinator of projects Rogers looks
Charity begins at a tender age

A kid cries to his mom for an opportunity to school after a visit to his brother at the school.

Kevin enjoys hide and seek
Soccer uniform, a gift form Kingdom Hope
"Where there is love you need no eyes"
E-Reader Kindle pilot project launched
Long Live Kingdom Hope
A mother admires sponsorship efforts
Diana mentors the kids in the new soccer field
Parents, children and sponsors' friendship

Future soccer fans and leader
Girls too need quality education opportunities
Dr. Bruce sits down for real business
Dr. Carey fully charged with a passion of love
Venensia and Rominet love new tech, E-Reader Kindle at Rubanda Solidarity School
Sr. Annamary excited at sponsors' letters of family photo and letter to their children

Yamba Abaana supporters charged with a passion for a difference
Technology, for rural poor kids is justice.

Dr. Carey mentors the kids on new E-Reader Kindles
                                              Artistic cultural gift from a school girls to visitors from USA

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Water! Water! Water!

Visitors from USA join Yamba Abaana UG. for H2O humt
Sr. Stella and Dr. Bruce a H2O hunt.
Water has become so crucial for Rubanda Solidarity School and the entire community of Rubanda. Concerned people have raised alarms for years but no lasting solution was ever found. The community has decided to go for a water hunting mission. This was prompted by their visit to the school and found kids crying out for drinking water. They also are aware of the unresolved burden to mothers and children who spend hours and hours traveling in search for possible water catchments. The solution seems far away off. But some hope came in this last February with the visit of our friends from the USA. With them we the community decided to launch a water hunting mission. Above, left is the visiting team's head Dr. Bruce Murray chating with Sr. Stellamaris Kysiimire on figuring out how long the hunting mission would take as the school bursar Mr. Kabananura looks on. To the top right,are some of the community members of Yamba Abaana Uganda leading the hunt.

The result of the hunting mission was one spotted area in the valley below the school as described by the photo below with water catchment potentials. In is below, Fr. Dominic and Dr. Bruce are standing on top of the hill pointing to that last possible place that once confirmed could provide water relief to the school and the community. The distance between the school on top of the hill to the valley on the possible well site is about seven hundred miters. That is quite a long distance for pumped water project in a community that electric power is unimaginable. However, it seems to be the only hope as the rain harvested water is never enough nor able to run through a school term. Its our hope that we will find water source, get funds and technical personnel to realize our hunting mission dream. Until then we shall not give up the hunt.
Dr. Bruce-left, with Fr. Dominic on a water hunt:  That is the only possible spot left to trap clean water for children.