Monday - 7/29
We built a tippy tap today for the lucky winner at last week's sensitization.
Tuesday - 7/30
As part of our push for having sanitation facilities and promoting sustainability, we decided to build tippy taps for each of our VHTs. Today, we built ones for Hamusa, Prossy, and Ruth.
Wednesday - 7/31
SAY WHAT. Last day of July?! Where did the time go?
I woke up to the sound of rain pattering on the roof today. It was such a beautiful way to start the day. Made some cinnamon french toast again with help from Kenzie and Julianna. It rained almost all of the morning and we were doubtful of the obstetric fistula sensitization we had today. Yet, the sun came out around lunch time and we decided to go on with it. We were worried about a low turnout at fistula because when it rains, many people head to their gardens and start the planting process since the soil is softer. Yet, by the time we finished, about 30 people had showed up to hear what Loy, one of the UVP staff, had to say. She described her own experience with fistula - the inability to control leaking of urine, the isolation from her family and community, and the road to recovery. She is definitely an inspiration.
Later, we headed to another UVP village, Kasigo, to say goodbye to some friends that are leaving the internship early. There was a nice potluck dinner and some speeches. Afterwards, as we headed back to the house (legitimately one house away), the boda that Andrew and I were on slipped on some mud and my foot got caught in the boda. No need to fear though! Only some bruises and a funny story to tell.
Thursday - 8/1
Later we planned for our Youth HIV, STI, and Family Planning sensitization tomorrow. We’re planning on holding a football match to garner interest and then have the session during halftime.
No football today due to the leg injury from last night. The kids said they heard me yelling and knew I had gotten into an accident….and then they made fun of me.
Friday - 8/2
We learned from our focus groups during the first couple weeks in the village that teenagers start having sex when they are around 13-15. It’s also not unusual for 15 year olds to marry and start having children. With this in mind, we decided to hold a Youth sensitization today at the school. It was a slow turnout (as usual), but more boys showed up after some time. Isaac and I played for some time and I realized two things: 1) I am extremely out of shape and 2) these boys do not understand what a high kick is. During halftime, the sensitization itself seemed unorganized to me. It was difficult to keep the boys’ attention. This was the first time I had a real issue with the language barrier. Frustrated and helpless, I only hope that the information we provided somewhat stuck with them. If not, I at least hope they’ll use the condoms we passed out.
Saturday - 8/3
Today, I ventured on a day trip to Jinja, a city that sits near the River Nile. As I headed out, I met up with the favorite fam bam and one of the kids, Saidi, actually came and walked with me. He was heading to Nabitende to sell some milk. I tried to wait for a boda with him, but had no luck that early in the morning. So Saidi and I walked from Kasambiika 2 to Nabitende. We encountered a patch of rain, but carried on and made it to the trading post a bit soaked. I parted with him there and met up with Kalee, Chloe, Marva, and Sneha. We traveled to Jinja on matatus. There, we took to souvenir shopping as well as relaxing a nice café/restaurant called Flavours. It was a nice quick trip to see a different city and relive what it’s like to have a chocolate croissant.
Sunday - 8/4
Relaxing day in the village. I fetched water from the borehole today. It’s damn good exercise carrying 3 20-L jerrycans full of water on a bike. I still do not understand how women carry them on their heads. That took up most of the morning for me. After lunch, Isaac and I went to Kasambiika Primary for a football match between K1 and K2. When we arrived, many people had already come and were waiting for the game to begin. With a referee and a makeshift scoreboard, the match started. It was a close game with the first half ending in a tie. Yet, by the end K1 technically ended up winning. Their goal was debatable though as the striker kicked the goalie whilst trying to score and many people argued the referee should have called a foul. Afterwards, arguments arose and it definitely got heated but in the end, everyone went their ways.
In other news, today we discovered that one of our favorite kids, Batale, is supposedly married. He is 15. Even though I had known that from the focus groups, it’s another thing to actually know the boy. It breaks my heart to think that now he has to start providing for a family. Additionally, the girl that he has married has to be younger than him. If she’s pregnant, the labor will be difficult because her bones have yet to finish developing. It’s saddening and slightly frustrating to hear because he was one of the boys that came and listened to the Youth sensitization. It almost feels like we were too late.