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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Hope North - remember Last King of Scotland?

Did you see the 2006 movie Last King of Scotland starring Forest Whitaker? On our way up to Gulu (located in the north of Uganda), we stopped to visit Hope North.

Hope North was started by Okello Sam. (Names in Uganda include first, the tribal name given by the parents, then the English baptismal name.) Sam founded the school after the Ugandan Civil War to help orphans and former child soldiers. Many of the boys were kidnapped at young ages and forced to perform horrible acts of violence.

The facility has received significant contributions from Forest Whitaker after working with Sam filming the Last King of Scotland. Forest Whitaker continues to visit and make contributions, though the school is in great need of funds.
The students planted and maintain these aloe plants and they have matured for 2 years. In one more year they will harvest the plants.
The students gathered to meet us. There are a few girls in the group.

The ground and facilities are basic. These are the homes where the teachers live.
Classes may have as many as 120 students in a class.
The sum total of the books available for their classes. Perhaps Forest Whitaker could round up some of his Hollywood friends and buy more books for the students.
Forest visited Hope North in December and brought a number of computers and tablets.
The children learn to cook. All our meals at St. Monica (in Gulu) were cooked on charcoal.

                                                                     Dormitory facility.
I hope you can open this video. The dancing is amazing and the joy on the faces of these children and young adults tells it all. Despite being captured by the Lords Resistance Army or being orphaned, these children express great joy. Their manners are impressive.
This picture is posted in the main office in Kampala. Okello Sam is on the left. He was an actor in the movie.

Next visit by Pros for Africa to Hope North will be significantly more extensive. We were only able to care for a few children and at next visit we hope to do physicals on all the children. There is a great opportunity for the future at Hope North.


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