The students learn all sorts of skills to generate income
Practical skills to generate income through sustainable agricultural practices
Student in their demonstration gardens – they teach parents who visit them 3 times a year
They construct furniture and house hold items from locally available materials
Students make items from rattan cane and timber Students proudly showing their tables and necklaces
The school volley ball and Net ball teams are top perfomers in Kibaale district
Students learn that girls can also excel in science subjects
Students under the social justice component of the school perform educative plays in the communities
Educative theatre with the aim to develop mind set change: positive attitude towards girl child education, women in leadership positions, people living with AIDS, amongst others.
After the performance, many participants make comments.
These are the ones we captures in Bwikara and Mpeefu Sub-counties:
Namanya Denes of Rwabaranga: “ I have learnt that the youth should test for HIV/AIDS before marriage and I appeal to the youth to abstain from sex until marriage’’.
Twesige Tom a parent of one of student at URDT Girls school said that: “ I have learnt that development cannot take place if people are sickly of malaria and HIV/AIDS just as it was in the play I therefore advise the people to be faithful, the youth to abstain and go for blood testing as the drama depicted’.
Annamary Massy of Bwikara said that: “many Husbands in Bwikara don’t want to go and test for HI; they instead force their wives to go and test just as it was in the drama. I therefore appeal to men to put in practice what you have learnt from the drama that all people should test for HIV’’
A story about my back home projects from Aharikundira Novence
I joined URDT GIRLS SCHOOL in 2006 in Primary five, I have now in Senior four.
Before joining URDT girls school, we had little food at home, we had no peace, cooperation, respect for one another, sanitation was not good, accommodation was poor, education was not considered much, and little did we know about a shared vision.
However, after joining URDT GILS SCHOOL, we had an orientation workshop, in which we had home visioning with our parents. At the end of the term we had another workshop, concerned with health creation, much was learnt including drying rack construction, bathroom construction, and rubbish pit and how to improve on our nutrition.
When I went home, together with my parents I organized a family meeting and discussed all that we had been taught at school in the workshop. In that way we had to begin with improving sanitation where by we dug a rubbish pit, we constructed a bathroom and have now a small kitchen garden.
My family members have actually attended all the workshops and as a result the following have been realized. We have joined a savings and a co-cooperative scheme. In addition, co operation, peace, love, respect for one another, improved nutrition, enough food are normal in my home. We have increased our income from projects like sugarcanes, pineapples, bananas, maize, cassava and little amount from harvested honey. My sisters have all been taken to good private schools to get access to improved educational services. We have successfully constructed a drying rack and more importantly, we have built a brick residential house.
We are yet to start poultry keeping project using local chicken organically.
Personally, when I go back home, I sell pan cakes, mandazi and yellow bananas, I have managed that my young sisters can buy books, pens, mattresses and others school requirements. I also participate in brick laying with my parents plus sisters.
I have learnt that education is the path to every thing because without education through URDT organization, I would not be what I am. It has a wakened the sleeping genius in me especially the end of term work shops.
Therefore, I appeal to my fellow students and to anyone who may access this document that, you should not be selective , achieving higher level of education doesn’t mean to leave other activities., like agric, because many people have given their testimonies \success of how they got rich through agric. However, you should struggle to be transformed agriculturalists
I encourage my fellow students to work very hard towards achieving their set goals for transformational leadership; health, wealth, happiness and prosperity.
HOW URDT CHANGED MY LIFE - Testimony from Komuhangyi Rosette-S3
Before I had joined the school, I was very shy, I could not express myself in public, our home situation was very poor, say we had a grass thatched house house, sanitation was very poor, no food security, no stable source of income and we did not have co-operation and also agricultural production was very low. There was no drying rack, a bathroom, and a rubbish pit.
In our village many girls had not gone to school because their parents looked at them as sources of income and as such married them off at an early age.
When I joined the school, we had an orientation workshop organized by URDT Girls School management. It was all about having a Vision and starting back home projects. Those were very new things to me simply because I have never heard of them before. So my mother and I made a Vision of having a good house, good nutrition, higher education of children and improved sanitation, so we went home during the first holidays, we held a family meeting and shared that Vision with other family members. The teachers gave us skills and knowledge on how to achieve our Vision like listening to one another, being committed, being creative and have great love for our Vision. So they encouraged us to bake bricks and begin the construction. They always visited us during the process and even now they are still visiting us for giving guidance.
Earlier before, I had a belief that a girl cannot perform any task in constructing a house but due to the information got from the school, everyone participated actively. I was introduced to new things in many aspects of life for example a shared vision, co-operation, information sharing and education as key in order to achieve happiness, prosperity, health, wealth and peace in our homes. We were told to reflect on our current reality of our home and looked at the vision we want to achieve within five years.
Due to different workshops held at school, parents and students were encouraged to save some money so they made their own savings and credit group and started saving.
In addition to that Shares Company was introduced by URDT to enable us to get some good amount of money and also become organic farmers. So our parents were given some seeds of Chili, and simsim. This was done after holding a workshop about organic farming to equip us with knowledge and skills on how to plant and manage the seeds organically. It was organized by the school. At the end of it all, we have managed to achieve the following at home:-
We have constructed a permanent house, a semi-permanent kitchen, a good drying rack, a bathroom and a rubbish pit. We have increased on our daily income through selling products from back home projects encouraged and then monitored by the school management. We started a saving culture and as I talk now every child has a bank account where she/he save money monthly.
Through our self help group where we contribute money monthly, we have started a shop business for daily in come. In a related development, we started a business of charging phones from solar which we bought after selling the products from our back home projects and also started sewing clothes using sewing machines as a business.
We managed to rear some animals like goats and pigs. We have joined some savings and credit group. All our other children are in school and we have tried to plant some banana suckers and yams to ensure food security.
All the above are as a result of workshops organized by the school, commitment and monitoring by the teachers of the school. So we have benefited a lot from the school and we still need more courage and support from it.
Our family has not only concentrated on our home alone but also shared information with neighbors whereby we encouraged them to join the savings and credit scheme which is working very well
My advice to mostly to those outside URDT family and my fellow students to follow the URDT teachings and radio programs and exploit your full potential to develop our families and communities.
Long live URDT Gs, Long live URDT management and Girls school Administration
A STORY ABOUT MY BACK HOME PROJECTS by Atugonza Faridah,
I am a student of URDT Girls School in senior five, I Joined URDT in 2005 in primary five class. We never had enough food, with insufficient basic needs, we attended poor schools, a few households items and poor sanitation and hygiene.
We attended the orientation and visioning workshop where I and my parent made a vision of a good shelter well ventilated house with a tank, the improved pit latrine, bath room, kitchen, drying rack, and rubbish pit. In order to achieve the vision, we have been attending workshops which helped us to develop our home and the community. We made groups where we got some knowledge about development by working together. We also cooperated with our community members, which also helped us to develop our home.
Then we attended more workshops, they enabled us to have personal development projects and family projects that can earn us money that has helped us develop our home. For example growing pineapples on a large scale.
Also the school has helped in such a way that I have gained skills like talking in public, we have gained knowledge and skills on how to look after my back home projects e.g. Chili, coffee etc. we have got knowledge and skills on how to develop my home and the community.
The school has helped me in such a way that we have improved on our income by taking my brothers and sisters in private schools due to the back home projects and it has helped me to reduce on shyness.
As we talk now our home has achieved the following developments:
A permanent house
Education: My sisters and brothers who were in UPE schools but when I joined URDT we got more information about education and now they are in good private schools.
We have achieved knowledge and skills through workshops e.g. to look after my back home projects and to develop my home and the community.
We bought sitting room chairs Sofa set, a motorcycle for transporting our farm produce to the market.
We now have about ten herds of cattle and some goats from where we get money and milk (well fenced farm)
Personally as a student my being at URDT Gs awakened my sleeping genius through MDD where we go to different villages sensitize people about different issues affecting our live such as HIV/AIDS, Malaria. Therefore my communication skills, life skills and leadership skills have improved. This has helped me to stay in school up this time.
We are a model home in our community thank to URDT Girls school
Long live URDT, long Live our sponsors!
Testimonies from AO, a teacher
My name is AO, a teacher at the URDT Girls School. Since I joined this school as a teacher, I have been transformed from being an ordinary teacher to being a facilitator of change that is to say I am now looking at issues in a holistic manner. This is attributed to the teachers development workshops the school always organizes at every end of the term. A case in point is the last term’s workshop; it was really very touching in a way that I learnt many facts about prevention of HIV/AIDS and Malaria.
This workshop was all about real life in our communities, the videos shown about different effects and signs of HIV/AIDS on human life were touching. This kind of knowledge was lacking to many of us especially signs of other sexually transmitted diseases and their subsequent impact on the life of an individual and community members.
I am really very grateful to the organizers of such workshops and the friends that supported this kind of workshop to take place especially Elimu foundation. I pray that these workshops should continue being conducted for us and the community at large. Thanks
Testimony from Alinaitwe Monica-S3
I am Alinaitwe Monica by names, a student at URDT Girls School in S.3. I attended a workshop on HIV/AIDS where we learnt how HIV/AIDS and malaria are spread and how they can be prevented; I learnt that HIV in full is Human Immunodeficiency virus and then AIDS is Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome.
I learnt many things from the workshop which things I did not know. I thought or doubted that HIV/AIDS does not exist but during the workshop I was assured and confirmed that HIV/AIDS exists and also kills. I learnt that it has no cure but for the ones that already have the disease can join the Company of Organisation called The AIDS Support Organisation (TASO) where they can be cared for by providing some tablets called Antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) which reduce on the multiplication of the virus in the blood of the body.
TASO also provides some food to the victims like yellow maize, rice, NIDO (milk powder), soya bean flour etc which improves on the immunity of the body of the victims. So, the workshop helped me a lot due to the important things I learnt. In that way, I have learnt how I can protect myself from acquiring HIV/AIDS by abstaining from sex, avoiding to move in dark places alone, saying ‘no’ to free gifts and lifts from boys and men.
Due to different life skills I learnt and then acquired like being assertive, I can now stand for and say a big NO to what men or boys demand from me which can destroy my future life like sex. I also learnt how I can overcome diseases, like gonorrhoea, syphilis, etc by avoiding having unprotected sex with uninfected person and also abstaining from sex. And for those already with the diseases should keep proper hygiene and seek for early treatment.
The workshop also has helped me on how to live with infected people peacefully because I used to fear anyone they would tell me that he is infected with AIDS but now I am able to live and eat with them and also live positively if you aer already having it.
Since we were advised to go for HIV/AIDS test and know our status, I have managed to go for testing and I am now aware of my life status. It has also helped me on how I can advise my fellow or people with HIV/AIDS how they can live with HIV positively. Therefore, I request that we should continue having such important and educative workshops since they are beneficial to us and other members of our families plus the communities at large.
Testimony from Alinaitwe Monica - S.2
I am Kyakuha Jane. Here are the benefits from the workshop we had on HIV/AIDS. Before the workshop, I had a parent who was affected with HIV/AIDS. She used to fall sick every time suffering from diseases like malaria, headache, cough, fever etc. Those diseases used to disturb her all the time.
Since the last workshop held, I was taught how to help such sick people, my parent is now ok and even she does every kind of work than the other time before. I personally now know how to prevent myself from HIV/AIDS, to overcome it so that I live a better life.
Besides that, I also have back home projects which help in income generation such as piggery, cattle, crop growing like maize, beans, pineapples and banana plantation. These have helped my family to get income mostly for school fees requirements for both my brothers and sisters.
Testimony from Kyakuha Jane – S.2
We are also growing Chilli which I hope will help us with other projects to improve on our home. With in those few years to come my home and community (village) will be the best. With sanitation, we have a good latrine, kitchen, drying rack, bathroom, good compound with flowers around. I thank URDT for the work done to improve on our home.
Testimony from Ahimbisibwe Judith-S.2
I am Ahimbisibwe Judith; a senior two student aged 16 years. I am from Bwikara Sub-county, Mairirwe parish in Igabiro village. Here I explain facts about my back home project.
I have a plantation of bananas and this has been because of URDT’s interventions by equipping us with knowledge of which has helped me to look after it very well. This has helped me to raise money for my requirements to come with at school and also my brothers and sisters have been able to be in a good school.
It has also helped me to acquire good and food security whereby though its drought season, we can still get food.
We have also planted coffee which we are sure of that within by the 2 years to come, we shall be in position to raise money that will help my sisters and brothers to attain good and quality education. I also have hope that by next year, we shall be in a permanent house and thus good shelter. All this is an achievement and so I say long live URDT, Long live URDT Girls School!
The end of term workshop which was about HIV/AIDS has also helped me a lot in equipping me with knowledge on prevention, I learnt that mere touching on someone may not lead to HIV/AIDS infection but however we are to handle them properly and make sure enough comfort has been given to him.
I have also been able to encourage my parents, sisters, brothers and community members to go for testing and in this I have almost succeeded.
I have been able to realize that abstinence is needed if not I will use condoms but since I am still young I will abstain till I finish school, mature and understand.
I also appreciate the work done by URDT Girls School for this workshop. I actually understand that acquiring it is not the end of life but I look forward to preventing my life from acquiring it. Long live URDT Girls School.