Home > Education, Health, Sports, The Heart, Volunteers, Water > Savings Lives at Lake Bunyonyi, Uganda

Savings Lives at Lake Bunyonyi, Uganda

For the children who live on the shores of Lake Bunyonyi,  the second deepest lake in Africa, collecting water and travelling in canoes on the lake is part of their daily life.  The  lake has a steep drop off from the land and fetching water  poses a high risk of children falling in and drowning.  Canoes often capsize in bad weather or when they are overloaded, and on average  between one and two people a month drown here. It is difficult to find someone who has not lost a close friend or relative to the water.

 

Going home from school

Going home from school

 

Edirisa’s swimming programme is part of a larger effort to mobilise swimming at schools around the lake. The Lake Bunyonyi Development Company train teachers in swimming with the hope that they will make time in the holidays to run swim camps with their students. At our centre in Bufuka the lessons are staffed by our volunteers and run during term time PE classes as well as during the school holidays. We are lucky to have the facility to teach students in a locally made swimming platform that sits in the lake rather than take novice swimmers into dangerous, deep open water.

 

The swimming platform

The swimming platform

 

Kids by the pool

Kids by the pool

As the school term ends our volunteers have started planning a summer swim school for the month-long holiday. It’s a part of the volunteer programme that is very much appreciated by the students and wider community as it continues to help save lives. Students at Bufuka have come a long way in the last year; Julia Fellinger and Ziva Skrlovnik recently took the first group of advanced swimmers on a 300m open water swim with great success.

We would like to say a big THANK YOU to all of our Teach Inn Bufuka volunteers who have been at the centre of this project. It is their efforts that have made such a big difference and we hope that our continued support will give these children not only confidence in the water but also the ability to swim to safety if needed.

 

This is fun!

This is fun!

Swimming

Swimming

 

Sarah teaching swimming

Sarah teaching swimming

We are also grateful to our partners – Edirisa Slovenia – who have just donated funds for much-needed renovations of the swimming platform. It is almost ready to be painted by volunteers in time for the summer lessons (watch this space!). Vrtec Volce, a Slovenian nursery, has also donated a number of children’s swimming costumes, towels and arm-bands which are much appreciated.

A GREAT TEAM EFFORT

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