Our community involvement:
The principle of ‘Do Good As You Go‘ is important to us.
A trip such as ours is a rare opportunity and experience. We cannot expect to just drift through Africa without it touching us, or without us interacting with the places we go and the people we meet.
It’s important therefore that we do what we can to contribute to the communities we encounter. We will not patronise them or simply provide hand-outs. What we will do is (where we can) put time and effort into passing on whatever experience or skills we have.
If we can help, we will provide a hand up – not a hand out.
AmahaWe Uganda (meaning ‘Hope for Uganda’) is a small NGO Charity Organisation based in Surrey (UK) and Kasese (Uganda).
Since 2006, solely through community fund-raising locally in Surrey, UK, they have established micro-finance initiatives and co-operatives amongst women’s groups and orphaned Street-kids around the Kasese and Rwenzori Mountain regions of Uganda.
Prior to our trip, Helene has worked with them for a number of years. Her particular focus has been on their craft and women’s co-operative initiatives.
Over the last 4 years, she has researched, designed, created, trained and rolled-out a Fire Briquette education & production programme.
Starting small, the programme has now been taken up by 32 women’s groups across the Southern Rwenzori Mountains. Most recently we have been able to introduce the programme to other women’s groups in southern Zambia.
Each group is made up of 14-20 women, making Fuel Briquettes from agricultural waste in order to reduce their dependance upon costly, unhealthy & inefficient commercial wood-charcoal and firewood.
Over 2 million women & children die each year from illness related to breathing woodsmoke whilst cooking and boiling water.
That’s 1 person every 15 seconds.
In a community where the average wage is less than $1 per day, charcoal costs the equivalent of 16 days’ income per month.
Making and burning Fuel From the Fields (Fuel Briquettes) saves time, money and lives.
In addition, if 30% of the people in the Kasese District of Uganda used Fuel Briquettes instead of wood-charcoal, more than 10 million trees would be saved from felling trees every 5 years in that region alone.
This initiative is not unique, but it is new to the region and it has been adopted enthusiastically by the community.
We have produced a couple of simple ‘How To‘ documents that illustrate the simple process involved in making charcoal from agricultural waste (Fuel From the Fields), making Fuel Briquettes to burn instead of wood charcoal, and making simple Rocket stoves that will improve the burning efficiency of the cooking fuel by 30-50%.
These documents can be downloaded for free on our ‘Links & Contacts‘ page.
For more information visit…
Our Home page tags for: Uganda
Their website:- AmahaWe Uganda
Their Facebook site:- amahaweuganda
Notionally ‘based’ in the USA, Muskoka actually operate in 40 community projects around the world.
Their vision is to transform the adventure-travel sector by including volunteering as an integral part of travellers’ plans. Their vision is to create a network of hundreds of modern day explorers, travelling overland in communities around the world, using their professional skills to do good as they go.
This network can lead to a significant impact on the world visited, reducing poverty, improving health and inspiring others to do the same. Unlike many of the ‘voluntourism’ type Gap-Year programs, their global travellers are seasoned professionals such as doctors, teachers, entrepreneurs and consultants.
Muskoka Travellers ‘use what they know, to do good as they go’ in visiting existing projects and looking for new opportunities to start fresh initiatives.
Visit their website …The Muskoka Foundation
‘Giving Pictures’ initiative:
In rural & remote communities people live incredibly simply. Many have never seen themselves as others do. We carry a small portable printer so that occasionally we can provide children and families with portraits for them to keep so that they can see themselves – often for the first time.
Wells For Zoë:
An Irish-originated charity, based in Mzuzu, Malawi. They make, distribute and install pumps for wells and bore-holes using simple but ingenious technology, cheap but robust products, easily maintained but reliable materials. Inspirational and effective, we bumped into their team by chance in Malawi and spent (unfortunately) a short time with them in a remote village outside Mzuzu.
See our blogpost about our meeting …here.
Visit their website wellsforzoe.org