We arrived in Uganda yesterday and drove 9 hours from Entebbe to Gulu. Yes, that is as long as it sounds! That is the amount of time it took us to fly from Amsterdam to Nairobi. The only difference was the scenery was spectacular. Uganda’s country side is just gorgeous.
I was so excited to be in a new place. We met my friend Kallie in the airport! She and some friends of hers started 31 Bits here in Gulu about 6 six years ago and have seen their program flourish. Women affected by the most extreme poverty imaginable now never have to wonder if they will have food to eat. Some if these women have even been able to pay for themselves to go to college, purchases property, and start businesses of their own just by making jewelry. What an incredible blessing Kallie and 31 Bits are to these deserving women.
They employ 120 women living in the Gulu area. I had the honor of teaching 20 of these women a little bit about hair dressing, hygiene, and salon business. Many of them have dreams of opening their own salons after they have the capitol they need from working for 31 Bits. Their motivation is extraordinary. I sat with two women, Harriet and Juliet, who want to open a salon together. They have tried finding salon equipment in Gulu with no luck. They asked me if they gave me their savings if I would purchase a shampoo sink and a hooded hair dryer if I would mail them to Uganda for them. Now, that is what I call determination!
Kaylie will be working with thier social workers and give a seminar to the women about Self-Esteem and Respect. I look forward to hear more about their lives and teaching chemical relaxing on Monday!