Search
Close this search box.
  • Volunteer Stories

My Life as a CorpsAfrica Volunteer

It always starts with you; a positive mindset is everything you ever need in life. It was a beautiful morning when I thought about working with nonprofits. I immediately acted on my thought by picking up my phone to search for available opportunities in Uganda. I landed on the advert where CorpsAfrica/Uganda was calling for volunteers. Oh! Voluntary work! I was excited because it would allow me to serve and make someone else’s life better. I was successful in my application and here I am serving in Namatovu Village, Buikwe District, somewhere in the central region of Uganda.

The Pre-Service Training was an exciting time for me meeting 17 other vibrant youth from diverse backgrounds passionate about serving local communities. It was a fascinating learning experience being equipped with various knowledge and skills for our service. My colleagues have become family.  

Staying with my host family allowed me to embrace the local culture and gain a deeper understanding of the challenges faced by the community members as well as build trust. I initiated some integration activities in the community like making kitchen gardens and saving groups, encouraging members to work as a team and take ownership of their development.  

One of my great joys is our saving group; Namatovu Community Group. Our saving group is a bit different from the usual ones. In our savings group, our collections start from one thousand shillings onwards.  Every Sunday at 4 pm, our group of thirty-three members meets not only to save but share experiences and ideas to economically develop members. In each sitting, we collect thirty-three thousand shillings which is given out to a lucky member chosen through lots. The lucky member uses the money to buy hens or cocks and has the responsibility to ensure they multiply to generate income. It is a joy to see people who were not working together before now meet and share so much to grow themselves.

Ashura is another community member who makes me proud because of the steps she has taken in her economic development.

Ashura is one of the farmers who I supported to do commercial vegetable gardening. Having set up a grocery stall near her home, she had the opportunity to sell her vegetables. In a day, she can earn at least 25,000 Ugx which she wasn’t earning before diversifying her stock with vegetables.  Whenever I visit and see her sell her vegetables, my heart is content. 

I have learned that a hard start doesn’t have to dictate how my service ends. I have learned to wear my boots and get into a garden to help a community member, have a laugh with members along the way, go to schools to set up vegetable gardens, and play with children. Community service keeps on shaping me by the day in communication, interpersonal skills, mobilization, and critical thinking. This is a life-changing opportunity for me. 

Compiled by

Sharon Asiimwe

CorpsAfrica/Uganda

Namatovu village, Buikwe district.

Gallery

Related Stories

Global Staff Training Podcast- Featuring Bandagne and Gladys

Read More  →

The Power of Conversation: Reflections on my CorpsAfrica service

Read More  →

Embracing Resilience in Community Development

Read More  →