Project Cornerstones: Water, Food, Healthcare and Education

We have planned and executed volunteer projects in both Kayenje and Nkokonjeru, Uganda. Please see below to learn about our current project, as well as learn about some of our past projects. If you would like to make a donation to our cause, please visit our donation page.

While we’ve had many successes in Kayenje, we believe the most impactful are around education. Not only are we attracting more qualified teachers, but we receive numerous applications to choose from. Additionally:

  • We recruited a new headmaster who is experienced and energetic about improving the school.
  • There is now an active and involved PTA at the school.
  • There are now 20 students who are boarders. The parents of those children pay for them to live at the school, which provides a better education than their local school.
  • There are new houses popping up around the school. Just as in the U.S., families will move to the best school districts to ensure a quality education for their children.
  • One of our biggest success' is that the school's standardized test scores used to be very low at #56 out of 60 schools in the district, they are now #6!

Current Project

In 2016 we began construction of a clinic adjacent to the Kayenje school and convent. The Archbishop of Kampala has promised us another religious sister, who is a registered nurse, when the clinic is complete. This will be a children’s and women’s clinic that will provide free healthcare to children and birthing mothers. The nurse will also provide health education to the school children. Our vision includes the weekly visit of a medical doctor and midwife to consult regarding the more serious patients. It’s also our goal to acquire the equipment and capability needed to facilitate a telemedicine connection with U.S. physicians.

clinic-plans

Kayenje, Uganda

In Uganda, a typical village consists of a common school and church surrounded by sparsely located houses, which can be up to 15 miles apart. The village of Kayenje is located nearly two hours outside the capital of Kampala, the last part which is traveled on a narrow dirt road. Located in a plush, steep, mountainous area, Kayenje is located far beyond the last power lines and running water. Before Bright Eyes Uganda arrived, Kayenje children had to walk up to four miles round trip to collect water from the village’s only water source: a contaminated stream. Because water was needed for drinking, cooking, and cleaning, as well as for animals and gardening, village children would have to make this trek up and down the mountain at least three times each day.

A New Primary School

Kayenje’s new school consists of three buildings.

A New Church

Kayenje’s old church was leaning considerably due to a sinking foundation.

A New School Kitchen

A new school kitchen includes stoves used to cook hot meals for the school children.

26 New Water Tanks

Bright Eyes Uganda has installed 26 water-collection tanks throughout the village.

Two New Ground Wells

A Jacksonville, Florida high school raised the funds required to dig two ground wells.

A New Teacher’s Home

It was difficult to attract certified teachers to such a remote area on salary alone.

A New Convent

Bright Eyes Uganda completed a convent that can house up to eight religious sisters.

New School Latrine

During one week out of every month, many girls did not attend school because of inadequate separation of latrine facilities.

Nkokonjeru, Uganda

During an unplanned stop in Nnkokonjeru, a remote village on the way to the Nile River, we happened upon an orphanage described as “the place for children nobody wants.” This orphanage not only serves disabled children, it’s also a home for the destitute elderly and a vocational school. The nuns of the Little Sisters of St. Francis run this orphanage like a true home and all residents are loved and well cared for. They learn trades, such as shoe-making, sewing and run a local bakery, a big help to them on their path to self-sufficiency.

Electricity in the Classroom

We installed wiring to bring electricity to the classroom buildings in the compound.

New Water Tanks

To help provide water for a community that has limited mobility, we purchased six 2,500 gallon water tanks.

A New Cooking Stove

The old “stove” was crumbling and the amount of firewood needed cost prohibitive.