Kibale Forest Schools Program/Kasiisi Project director Jim Fenton has brought his passion for birds to our schools by starting a community birding program in the Wildlife Clubs, helped by Sylvester a keen local birder. For many of us birdwatching was the introduction to wildlife that led to careers and lifelong involvement in conservation. For our children, who rarely get to see the magnificent wildlife in their National Parks, birds are an accessible way to learn about many of the challenges faced by their environment.
Kasiisi Project Updates
The Great Ape Survival Partnership marks World Wildlife day with a short but arresting movie highlighting a serious and growing threat to Great Apes. They have their forests cleared, they are hunted as bush meat and now they are increasingly illegally traded to Asia and the Middle East for zoos and private collections. Click here to take a look.
Kasiisi Primary School attained the second best score in the 2014 Primary Leaving Exams (PLE) for a government primary schools in the whole of Kabarole District with 76% of its students attaining Grade 1 passes. For the first time we had students with an aggregate score of 5 – a girl at Kigarama and a boy at Kiko. The best score possible is a 4.
Now we would like to give the most able of them a chance at a high quality secondary education and the brightest future possible.
Has it been in your mind that you might like to sponsor one of our students for secondary school but haven’t quite got around to doing it? Can you commit to 4 years of a full or partial scholarship? Can you do it this year? To be able to sponsor 2 students of each sex this year we need someone, or a group of someones, to support a boy.
If you are interested please contact email@example.com and we will give you all the details.
In the meantime congratulations and huge thanks to everyone who has helped our schools excel – either with generous contributions, hard work or both!
HAPPY HOLIDAYS FROM THE KASIISI PROJECT
We would also like to remind those of you who still wish to make year-end charitable donations that December 31st is fast approaching. Please consider The Kasiisi Project either with a donation via cheque or the paypal button on our website. Our overheads for 2013-2014 were 2.2% – you can be assured that over 97% of your donations support programs in Uganda.
Or if you wish to combine assisting us with checking off the last few gifts on your list , we can do that too. Current needs in addition to scholarship sponsors for 2015 include:
Beehives @ $40 each
Bunk beds for our Girls Dormitory due to open February 2015 @ $80 each
If you tell us who and where we will send cards to the recipients from you. For additional information e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
HAPPY HOLIDAYS EVERYONE!
We thought you might like a glimpse into what happens during a typical week of project work in Uganda: Below are the minutes of the staff meeting for the week beginning 11/11/14.
Thanks to volunteer Oliver Bradley, the Kasiisi Project has an exciting new program to protect girls from sexual harassment , increase their access to education and to promote independence and self reliance: BICYCLES!
Long walks to school are a problem for all children in rural Uganda, but particularly for girls. They are vulnerable to sexual harassment on the road, and the temptation, when you are tired, to accept lifts from the Boda-Boys (drivers of motorbike taxis) can be irresistible. But Boda-Boys often expect sexual favors in return, leading to pregnancy and HIV infection.
The length of the journey also means very early starts, often before dawn, and arriving home too late to do much homework while it is still light.
The Kasiisi Project Girls’ Bicycle Program hopes to change this. The brainchild of volunteer Oliver Bradley, this pilot initiative is providing 25 girls from Kasiisi and Kigarama Primary Schools with bicycles, and teaching them to ride them. Buffalo bicycles, provided by World Relief Bicycles, are built to withstand the tough roads of Africa. All the girls will receive helmets, road safety training, and will be required to bring the bikes in for regular check ups and maintenance.
And we do not forget our boys – we hope to train students in bicycle maintenance, both to maintain our bikes and to provide a skill they can put to good use in the future.
This is a pilot – we hope to expand the program into other schools. We thank Oliver and his family for their generosity donating the first 25 bikes. If this program excites you, donations for more bikes can be made via the paypal button on our website – instructions for use are in the previous post.
Here is how you use the Paypal button on the Kasiisi Project website so that your donation goes to the program that you wish it to.Click on the Paypal button and follow instructions until you reach the page where you make the final confirmation of your donation. On that page there is a line that says “Add Special Instructions to Seller” Click on this line and a box will open. You can type “Beehive” or “Girls’ Program” or wherever you wish your donation to go, in this box, and when Paypal sends us notice of the donation we will see what you wanted and act on your instructions.
Don’t worry if you can’t make this work. When we get notification of your donation it includes your e-mail address and we will always check in with you which program you wish to support.
Know a kid who loves bees? or a friend passionate about helping girls stay in school? With the Holiday Season just round the corner are you looking for a great Holiday, Birthday or just an “I Love You” gift.
We have 2 great options for you: Help donate a Bunk for our new girl’s dormitory, due to open in February, or a buy a Beehive for our farm.
Each bunk set costs $80 – we need 60, and each Beehive $40 – we need at least 20 to make it worth the beekeeper’s time to set up the hives. Buy a whole bunk or only part of one, share the purchase of a beehive with your honey or buy one for your children – we will keep them updated on “their bees” and link them to the Ugandan students who are going to paint them.
Let us know the name and address of the recipient and the date you want it delivered by, and if you want us to add Holly, Menorah, Hearts or Birthday Balloons. We will send either a Bee Card or a Bunk Card, or both, and attach a plaque with the recipient’s name to the item you choose. Then we will send a photograph of the finished item to them.
Donate through our Paypal button at www.kasiisiproject.org and we will contact you for details or e-mail email@example.com
Bees are wonderful – did you know that Honey bees will tap about two million flowers and fly 50,000 miles to make one pound of honey ? And then there is their vital role in pollinating our food. We hope that you love bees as much as we do, and are excited that we are including them with chimps (who don’t like getting stung but love honey ) and elephants (who plain hate bees), to the growing list of Kasiisi Project animals of special interest.
It is common knowledge that bee populations are declining everywhere, and so we are delighted to announce that The Kasiisi Project is now becoming a partner in bee-keeping in Uganda. We are currently involved with bees in 3 different ways – hosting beehives on the Kasiisi Project Farm, with a view to one day becoming beekeepers ourselves, working with local research scientists to trial “bee-fences” as a deterrent to crop raiding elephants and spreading the importance of bees to our students.
Sarah Callan, Harvard ’14, and former director of the Harvard Undergraduate Beekeepers Association has been in Uganda for 2 months spearheading our new initiative. She has been learning about beekeeping in rural Africa, sharing the successes and challenges of her experiences in the US with local bee-keepers, and learning about how Volcanoes Safaris Partnership Trust is trialing the use of bee-fences to keep elephants out of farms around Queen Elizabeth National Park.
Clearly the language of bees is international – Sarah has found kindred spirits in Uganda and will be sharing her fascination with bees with our children through planned presentations to school Wildlife Clubs.
Students from 7 schools competed in a Drama, Music and Dance competition, focused on issues of sexual health, girl’s empowerment and equal access to education. This competition, the culmination of 6 months of activities designed to support the health curricula taught in the schools, was part of a new trial initiative, funded by the Lalor Foundation, to bring in-depth health knowledge and greater life skills to our girls. So that information presented in the skits and songs could be shared with a wider audience, all teams performed for their schools before traveling to the competition. Nurse Lucy, of the Kibale Health and Conservation Project was on hand to correct any errors.
Kiko won the prize for the best song, Kyanyawara for the best skit, Kigarama showed the most creativity, Rweteera the best Life Skills message, Pere Atche the best Women’s Empowerment dance and Iruhuura the best Empowerment message. Kasiisi Primary School was the overall winner.
Scores from Music Drama and Dance, gardens and essay writing were tallied and Kasiisi became the first Recipient of the Lalor Girls’ Health Cup.