Suubi is a buzz at the moment with three brand new groups of volunteers/visitors arriving from around the globe; past volunteers were joined by first time visitors to Uganda from both Barcelona and Australia.
As the different groups arrived it was exciting to see them all taking the opportunity to stop over at Elite Backpacker Hostel so they could recover from their long journeys before heading out to Lubanda Village. Suubi Centre director, David Ssemwogerere and his partner, Hellen Mbabazi, have recently establish this business, in Masaka Town. They are aiming to provide a homestyle hostel, for budget conscious volunteers and international travellers, and it seems the latest arrivals very quickly felt right at home!
Meri & Oriol and two sons Guillem and Thierry loved the homestyle breakfast at EBH.
It is great to have Meri and Oriol and the boys back with us again. Meri will be hard at work with the Suubi ladies, over the next month, teaching them the new knitting patterns for their summer range of babies clothes. Check out ILIKEMYSOCKS website, where you will soon be able to purchase the cutest little baby pieces that the Suubi ladies have made.
The new Setem team were also happy to get in to the kitchen to help prepare their breakfast; which included eggs bought from the SSVC students home based project! Just one of the many fabulous ways that EBH will be supporting other Ugandans.
Andrea, Anna, Bea, Paula and Anna, from Setem, were happy to share breakfast at EBH with Kristie from Australia.
Kristie and the Setem team will be spending the next month together at Suubi. With each of them having different interests and passions, they are all looking forward to getting involved in the many different initiatives available at Suubi. Be sure to keep checking back in to see what they are up to - maybe you'll see them helping out schools or the Suubi Clinic..... playing sports, or with the Suubi craft ladies....... or you might even see them working on the construction of the new workshop that is currently going on at Suubi Secondary & Vocational College!
Before heading out to Suubi an orientation session was held for the eager group in the common room at EBH.
Once in the village the girls were introduced to the SSVC students
and teachers. The girls have settled in well now and we are very sure they are going to have a fabulous time.
Back at EBH: while the accommodation is an important component of the business, as usual with David and Hellen, it is the ability for the backpackers to help other Ugandans that they are most happy about. With Hellen recently graduating from her university degree in art/education, the space at the hostel has also enabled them to set up the EBH Art Gallery & Craft Shop. This will allow them to showcase the art work of Hellen's fellow artists, and also craft made by the Suubi ladies........ giving them exposure and an opportunity to sell to people from all corners of the world!
Meri and Thierry check out some of the Suubi ladies paper bead jewellery which is for sale in the EBH Gallery & Craft Shop.
The 2nd group to arrive at EBH were also impresses by the all the art and craft available in the gallery.
What a lovely sight to see - Spanish, Aussies and Ugandans all enjoying the spacious grounds surrounding EBH.
We were also happy to have past volunteer, Laurence Webb from Australia, back with us again for a couple of days last week. He was keen to bring Ugandan counterpart, Gabriel, to check out all the wonderful progress that has happened at Suubi since his last visit in 2012. Gabriel runs a project in Kagadi and it was the perfect opportunity for him to learn from Suubi's success and also share his experiences and ideas with the Suubi staff.
So as you can see, Suubi Centre and EBH, are bringing like minded people together from different corners of the world. The current bunch of volunteers from Spain and Australia are passionate about working together with the Ugandans to empower locals who want to build a better life for themselves. What a fantastic, multicultural way to make positive change through community development!