We are starting a series here in the journal to introduce you to our community that lives around Tusubira Village. These people have been a part of our work in Uganda since the beginning and have made vast improvements in their lives. But I want you to hear it in their own words. So, I would like to introduce you to Fred- a man whom I adore and who has been an example of what amazing things can be accomplished with hard work and an open mind to trying new things.
1. What is your name?
My name is Musota Tibenkana Fred
2. Are you married?
3. Do you have children?
Yes I have children, four of them. Oohh sorry, I have five - one boy and four girls.
4. How did you connect with SCEP (Sustainable Community Education Program) and The Grow Hope Foundation?
It was one Sunday when I was walking round, then I saw people gathered under the mango tree and the village leader was also there. I drew closer to listen to what was going on and no one was bothered about my standing near the meeting. Then I heard you people teaching about what makes a person to be called healthy. I was excited about different things but it was new to me to hear that if someone isn’t happy, then he isn’t healthy. I left wondering when you said that some one at wrangle with his neighbor he isn’t socially healthy. I then also sat down and no one chased me away. Anyway, from the little I heard on that day, I noticed that you had plenty to teach and I noted the next date for the teaching. Its from that date that I came to learn about and join SCEP.
5. How has your life changed from the time you joined SCEP?
I feel so strong enough in everything I do nowadays and I believe in my self just like you taught us. I have become more hard working because the gardens give me a lot of hope, especially when people come to my home to admire. This makes me work harder. My home also attracts people’s attention more than before. But I think I am also very strong because of the balanced diet which I now get and thank you for teaching us. I am also happy that I am able to meet most of the school needs for my children with the money I earn from selling the vegetables though not yet enough to meet all needs.
6. Of the knowledge that you have gained from SCEP, which one has had the best impact on your life?
The knowledge of farming and being in good relations with all people to be healthy.
7. What other knowledge do you need to continue making positive changes in your life?
I tried rearing chickens some time back but I lost all of them because of reasons I don’t know until now. I think you saw the nets i had put at home for the chickens! And I think that if I get more knowledge about rearing chickens and cows, I will be able to improve more.
8. What advice do you have for the non-SCEP members?
I only teach them every time they come to my home to admire (my gardens).
9. If SCEP left this village for another village right now won’t you get back to where you were before?
hahahahaha (very big laughter with wonders) No my friend, I will never get back again. SCEP has already shown me the right direction to take and I would just keep going but don’t plan on leaving us because we still need more guidance and knowledge from you.