We rose early this morning to strap the panels to the roof of our van. Nyaka recommended working with BicTours, run by Samuel Mugisha, one of the most cheerful and helpful persons I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting.
Our driver was Michael and he weathered the full 12 hour drive with us. We passed the equator, two zebras (which apparently weren’t real since I was the only one who didn’t see them), red crested cranes, and hundreds of ente (cows).
We arrived at the Nyaka Vocational and Secondary School at dusk. The students were still near the school building and at least 10 young men helped us unload the van. It was amazing to see a sea of hands easily carry the boxes we had been dragging across three continents. Now that we are finally here and the solar panels are safe, my stress is gone. Now the installation of the solar array can begin!
We are staying at the guest house on the primary school campus. There we ate dinner around 7:30, which is a typical Ugandan dinner time. Also staying at the guest house is Madeline Moore. Maddy has been here with Nyaka since last July as a Health Program Associate and Global Health Corps Fellow. She also was a Community Health Development Volunteer in the Peace Corps for two years in Zambia. I cannot wait to hear more of her stories. She was a fantastic resource for all of our questions. She told us that 2/3s of the students attending the Nyaka schools are orphans (one or both parents are deceased). In order to attend a Nyaka school, students and families go through an interview process and home visit. Nyaka staff select children from the families with the most demonstrated need for whom an education will impact the lives’ of the entire family.
Tomorrow the real work begins. I will sleep well tonight.