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  • Writer's pictureRoss Young

Update: New Classrooms @ Kishunju

I realise that it has been a while since I updated our blog, so I’m just going to jump in with another update and try to be a little more regular with updates going forwards!

Now that I write for a living, I certainly shouldn’t have any excuses!

Anyway, following the COVID-19 pandemic, we had to make some changes to the way that Zuri operates. Specifically, we had to reduce operations and cut back considerably in Uganda, given that we lost quite a lot of funding.

Still, over the past two years, we have received some very generous donations from individuals and community groups and have been able to continue our work in Kihembe, albeit on a smaller scale than we would have liked.

I am personally grateful to the Rotary Club for continuing their support of our work in Uganda, particularly the RC of Stourbridge for some very generous donations in recent times.

We also have some supporters who donate monthly to our bank account, which I am so grateful for given the cost-of-living crisis that so many people are experiencing right now in the UK.

Another source of income for us has been the Knowle Masonic Lodge (via my Dad), which has helped us fund some of our most recent projects in Uganda.

Now that you’re up to speed with where we’re at, I want to provide an update on what we’ve been doing in Uganda over the past couple of years. Starting, in this blog post, with the amazing building work that we have seen at Kishunju Nursery and Primary School.

New classrooms at Kishunju

Following the Arden Academy visit just before COVID, Kishunju Nursery and Primary School in Kihembe now has a fabulous new classroom block.

The Arden team raised more than £3,000 to contribute the bulk of the cost of these new classrooms and it was a timely intervention given that the previous block was destroyed in a particularly brutal storm.

As a tribute to the fundraisers, we decided to paint the classrooms in Arden’s colours – green, white, and gold, and the community is delighted with the work completed.

Fast-forward three years (I can do this, given that I haven’t updated you for so long!) and we are delighted to announce that Becky Kealey, a long-time supporter of our work, was able to fundraise for the building of another classroom at Kishunju.

As of the summer of 2023, we have finished another classroom to add to those built by Arden School students, and are already planning for another classroom to be added by the end of the year.

Though this village school has had its fair share of challenges over the years, we hope that the completion of these classrooms will help the school evolve and grow in the near future.

Of course, we still plan to support Kishunju going forwards, but I am personally thrilled to get this one over the line. Given that it was a project that Zuri co-founder Martin started way back in 2012, it’s satisfying to see the progress we have made over a ten-year period.

Thanks to everyone who has contributed to this project and keep an eye on the blog for any future updates relating to work that we complete at Kishunju!

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