Kabale District is so beautiful. I know, I have said many times before how this mountainous region of Uganda reminds me of Wales. In 2008, I and three other Canadian women visited the 50 women being supported by the Stephen Lewis Foundation through ROTOM. And the experienced changed our lives.
The women shared their stories with us, and told us about the pain of losing their children and husbands, how they remained poor and hungry, and felt forgotten. They were continuing to care for so many grandchildren and orphans.
Eleven years later many of those amazing women have passed away, but 15 were able to attended our Fellowship celebration!
The welcome was as warm and emotional as I remember from all those years ago and we had so many tears in our eyes. The people are so full of joy and love, despite the weather growing colder with the arrival of the long rainy season. ROTOM’s support has had such a profound impact on the daily life of these strong women, and helped them build a beautiful community. They have access to health care and support to grow their own food, and their Grandchildren have access to schooling; they are so proud of who they are! One young lady, by the name of Zipporah, told us how she had successfully completed her secondary education and was accepted into the ROTOM Campions program. She is now in the YMCA National Institute completing a Tourism Diploma! Her Grandmother (Kaka in Kahama) is so proud of her, the first child from Kahama to go to College.
Evelyn, my lovely sister in Kahama , looked beautiful in her red dress. She was the first person I met on the mountain in 2008. She is a remarkable woman, caring for so many grandchildren. Now around 88 yrs old, she is a leader in her community. She went to Canada last year to talk in conferences for the Stephen Lewis Foundation in Toronto and Edmonton, sharing her story and those of her friends of Kahama. My hero!
It was a very special day.