Visit to Kinkiizi, Uganda Summer 2013

Another Kinkiizi Challenge!

Team: Gill Tybjerg, Gwynne Kynaston and Bethan Davies

We don't have enough words to express our love for you..
- Kinkiizi people

This is a comment made by people in Kinkiizi that has been said to me many times now, having been there again for my third visit. Each time I have been struck by how generous, friendly and hospitable the people in Kinkiizi are.

They continue to be faced by many challenges in their everyday lives; since my first visit in 2010 not a great deal has changed. The majority still do not have electricity or running water in their homes and face daily tasks to collect water and firewood.

Kasinga Church
Kasinga Cathedral
Kasinga Class

The aim of my visits on each occasion has been to promote and administer the link that exists between Christchurch Deanery and Kinkiizi Diocese. As chair of Kinkiizi Action Group for Christchurch Deanery I am passionate we manage the link effectively and ensure funds raised in the Deanery are used wisely and appropriately.

Our links are also strengthened by the ‘partnership’ of schools in our area with schools in Kinkiizi and I am pleased the work being shared between Burley Primary and Katabere Primary, and Hale Primary with Nyakatare Primary is going well. Children in both countries are learning about each others cultures and their rights and responsibilities. In addition, a new link has been set up during the recent visit, between Ringwood Infants School and Kihihi Primary School and promises to be as successful as the other two.

A two week trip allows us to spend ten days in Kinkiizi as travelling there takes two days each way. The focus this time was very much on the schools links as Burley and Hale are both taking part in a British Council funded initative: Connecting Classrooms. This will enable a teacher from each Kinkiizi School to make a return visit to UK and we are excitedly anticipating the arrival of two teachers soon. We were also able to attend some confirmation services. These were very long – about five hours each! There was much joy and celebration on the occasion of a first communion for so many young people; as well over a hundred were confirmed at each service.

Gill Tybjerg