A group of us went to visit the staff and children at Walukuba East Nursery and Primary School, which is partnered with Ness’ school in the UK (Bowdon Church School). We all split up and visited a number of classrooms, with up to 60 children in each.
We thought I would be a great idea to teach them “Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes.” This went down a storm and to our surprise most of the children already knew it. It was amazing to see the joy in the children interacting with us. Some classrooms even sang to us their own songs which was an honor to hear.
Ness and Pauline spent their time in the younger classes (Baby, Middle and Top Nursery) and used the glitter activity to teach about the importance of hand washing.
We had time after the classroom visits to mingle during break time. Most of the children (1,000 +) simply wanted to chase us around and pose for photographs.
The afternoon and evening was spent back at the same local village we visited on Tuesday. This time we split into groups and carried out eye health workshops with the villagers using interpreters to break the language barrier. This type of education is essential as awareness of the small things, such as regularly washing hands to prevent the spread of infection and noticing symptoms of infection and conditions, which can keep eyes and eyesight healthy, is limited. We taught on the importance of a varied diet – in particular vitamin A – and of visiting a health clinic if an eye condition develops. We showed pictures of pictures of a baby with sticky eyes, people with cataracts, a child with measles, a child with trachoma and these were all studied with great interest.
Afterwards the village elder asked people to come forward and say what they had learned from the training and it was encouraging to hear that the messages appeared to have been understood.
The afternoon ended with speeches from villagers and Edison, who came along from NVI, supper and an amazing party with drums and dancing. It was so good to see the happiness in the many the children, especially when we handed out soft drinks in cartons (with straws), balloons and glow sticks, which some of them had never seen before.