A Market Bag for you and breakfast for kids in need!

Good morning friends!

We are so excited that we can finally share with you a project we have been working on here at the Grow Hope foundation.  You may remember the Porridge Project that we began a few months back- a program that will help combat malnutrition in children in our community and beyond.  Well, we teamed up with Fashionable Notes- an amazing design company, to create a market bag for us that would allow us to offer you something fabulous but also impact the children in our community surrounding Tusubira Village.  They created these wonderful canvas totes that are wonderful for carting all of your gear around, or taking to the grocery or market when you go shopping.  They are sturdy and washable and best of all the proceeds from the sale of each bag will feed TWO KIDS for an ENTIRE school year!  Through the Porridge Project kids who would otherwise go without food until after a long school day will be provided with "breakfast" - a meal that will give them energy to learn as well as to fight malnutrition.  We are so excited about these bags and what they will mean for our community.  Malnutrition is one of the leading killers in our community and through the Porridge Project we hope to reduce that statistic and help this community become stronger.  Visit tiggy & grace - our online shop where you can purchase one (or more) of these market bags.  Each bag is $30. Together, we CAN make a difference!

A Garden Grows in Uganda

Hello friends!

We wanted to share a quick update on the INCREDIBLE work the community in Uganda is doing in the gardens at the Tusubira Village educational compound.  They are working SO HARD to plant our education gardens with a wide variety of crops so that people can see all of the healthy nutritional produce they can grow at their own homes.


We also have a team of gardeners that we have hired to not only oversee the planting and organizing of the gardens but to also be a part of teaching the community members that come to Tusubira Village to learn.  As we see these gardens coming together, sprouting and the long beautiful rows growing so well we are so excited to see people begin to see what it is we are doing here on this educational compound.  

For people who don't have enough land to plant proper gardens at their home, we are teaching them how to grow their produce in these wonderful repurposed bags.  The gardeners show them how to fill the bags with dirt, a cylinder of rocks down the middle for water to evenly distribute through the entire bag.  We offer starts in a variety of plants that they can grow and we also will teach them how to harvest seeds from their plants to grow future crops.  

The women in our community have enthusiastically visited the gardens whenever there is an opportunity to learn.  These women work so hard to improve conditions at their own homes, and the chance to improve the nutritional intake of their families is reason enough to learn what they can and take the lessons learned home.  Dr. Isaac and Sharon gave the women a tour of the spinach garden this week and shared with them the high nutritional content of spinach. 

Before the women left the compound they were each given a bunch of the spinach to take with them.  

We have a number of objectives at Tusubira Village.  Our highest priority is to create a sustainable program that will generate enough revenue to continue to expand the programs we hope to eventually offer.  Much of our crops will be sold to generate that income.  Another priority for us is to donate a portion of our produce to local organizations who are working with venerable children and people in the surrounding communities.  We want to support others doing good work in our area.  Finally, we want to make sure that the original community that welcomed us so warmly and enthusiastically is taken care of.  We want to support those that struggle to feed their families.  We want them to know that we are there as a part of their community and as such, we look out for each other as a family would. 


We are still raising funds to put a roof on our first building at the compound.  If you want to make a donation please email thegrowhopefoundation@gmail.com

Uganda 2015 Update- Part 1


We set a few lofty goals when we started our work in Uganda, the largest (so far) of which involved bringing a well to Tusubira Village. A well means a lot of things to this community. It means a fresh water supply for eating and watering gardens, for bathing and hygiene, and a resource to literally sustain life. Thanks to a little “can-do” spirit and a lot of aggressive fundraising and generous donors, we saw that goal come to life. Kimberly was lucky enough to return to Uganda on behalf of our team to check on that well in addition to several other Grow Hope sponsored projects in progress. What she witnessed and accomplished during her time there was beyond encouraging.



We thought we’d pass along a little update to get you up to speed with what we’ve been working on. Progress is moving forward in our little village and we couldn’t be more pleased!

  1. The well is functioning as it should and community members also voted to to pay a small user fee, funds would then go towards maintenance costs as they arise. It thrills us to see the people taking ownership over the well and its success, which is exactly what we hope for when it comes to the rest of our plans within the village.

  2. So much work has been done on the 4 acres of land which will eventually host 40 gardens and various agricultural endeavors, as well as our next major focus: a multi-purpose educational compound. Trees have been cleared (leaving the existing jackfruit, mango, avocado and banana trees of course), a field of pineapples has also been planted. 

  3. While Kim was there we were able to break ground on the first of a series of buildings to be a part of the educational compound. This building will provide quarters for an on site social-worker who will facilitate the different educational, health, and community programs. Until the other buildings are completed it will also be used for meetings and to store supplies needed for ongoing projects, like the nutritional packets which we’ll touch on in part 2 of this update. We will also share the work that goes into building these buildings which begins with making each and every brick by hand.

  4. Funds that were raised and donated by a generous school project hosted by The Grow Hope Club in Canada were used to purchase and distribute 80 mosquito nets to families in need. Assistance and education was also given to those recipients on the exact installation and use of these nets, a step further from previous efforts where no education was given at all. Malaria is the #1 cause of death in this part of Uganda and mosquito nets can be hugely effective in reducing those numbers when used properly. 

  5. The team completed a visit to the children’s hospital in Jinja, the town closest to our community. Hygiene and comfort items were handed out to all of the people there (items generously donated by those back in the states). The main focus of our time at the hospital was spent on the malnutrition ward where we witnessed first hand its devastating effects on the children there. Since Ugandan soil is so rich and responsive to agriculture efforts, we have hope that we can use the produce from our gardens, combined with ongoing nutritional and hygiene focused education, to change the way people eat and prepare their food and hopefully improve their overall health and wellness. 

  6. In conjunction with improved nutrition efforts we connected with a few different programs that feed children in Uganda in the hopes that one day soon we can donate any excess produce from our community gardens in Tusubira Village to those in need.






There was so much crammed into such a few short days that even catching up months later is a bit overwhelming. Though our time in Uganda was limited, it was extremely productive and that’s something to be proud of for those of us involved both here and on the ground back in Africa.

Part 2 of our 2014 excursion is soon to come, stay tuned to hear about the community educational focus and the advances we’ve made on a local level, along with some insight into our plans for the future.


It’s good stuff, we promise!  



Meet {Christine}

We'd like to introduce you to Christine.  She owns a small business near Tusubira Village and we knew soon after meeting her that she was a natural leader.  In a place where women can often feel inferior and have little power in their communities, Christine stands out.  She is focused on the projects she undertakes and dedicated in not only completing her own tasks but encouraging others to do the same.  She is respectful of other community members and has a way of bringing people together to work as a team in order to accomplish more than if they worked individually.  We feel fortunate to have Christine working with us to build Tusubira Village as she is an amazing role model for the women in rural Uganda.

1 What is your name?


2 Are you married?

Not married (Christine lost her husband)

3 How many children do you have?

6 children, 3 girls and 3 boys

4 How did you connect with SCEP?

The chairman told me about a new project that had come in the community and the way he explained to me about it attracted me to join.

5 How has your life changed since working with SCEP?

My hygiene at home improved, I have a sun drier, a good latrine and rubbish pit where after I collect manure.

6 What knowledge have you gained from SCEP?

Better farming skills and am able to sell on the vegetable to get some money for other needs.

7 What else do you think we need to do in SCEP?

We need to stay united for development because we all learn from one another.

8 What other knowledge do you think SCEP should bring to the community?

Put some adult education especially on how to read and write

Meet {Fred}

Hello Friends!


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.

The beginning of a well

Friends, you did it!  Thanks to you we funded our campaign and the community surrounding Tusubira Village will have access to water from a well that is safe to collect.  We are so grateful for your incredible generosity and belief in this project.  With your support Tusubira Village is going to help improve lives~

We are so excited to share with you that the initial studies for installing a well in Tusubira Village have begun!  The hydrologist has been to the property and done a complete study of where the well will hopefully go.  Things look very promising so far and we are working with drilling companies to collect bids for installing the well itself.  The community is partially in disbelief that this well is actually going in.  It really isn't something they ever dreamed they would have access to- safe drinking water.  It truly will change the way of life here in this rural community.