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Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Infrastructure


Infrastructure in Uganda can be broken down into the three general areas of transportation, electricity, and water systems. Roads are the most commonly used form of transportation and as such, deserve the most attention as they are necessary for people to have access to work, groceries, and any other resource outside of their home. Unfortunately, the roads in Uganda are highly congested, unpaved, and sometimes difficult to navigate. This makes travel time in Kampala and other areas inefficient and slows development in little ways on a day to day basis. Access to electricity is inconsistent, and some areas lose power for days or weeks at a time without any means of recovering it without a personal generator. Water sanitation in Uganda is in an equally poor condition, and unlike in America, it is unsafe to drink water from any kind of tap or water fountain. This means a heavy emphasis on water bottles as the only safe access to water, which creates a large amount of plastic waste, often left on the side of the road.


By the way this is Quinn, not Kaitlynn, thanks

Monday, June 11, 2018

Culture

On Sunday, May 27th, we had the amazing opportunity to visit the Ndere Centre and throughout the trip, we experienced handmade art, ceramics, jewelry and more. At Ndere, we were able to participate with the performers whether it was dancing or playing an instrument of choice with traditional music. Stephen, the director, stressed the concept of all of us coming together as one and improvising together while allowing the music to take control. The performance throughout the rest of the night encompassed at least four or five different traditional cultural dances. They embraced the music to the fullest, displaying pride in their culture(s). It’s crucial for us to be proud of what we believe in and embrace our culture whether it’s religion, morals, or values. 


Although exhausted from the day, all of us were eager to dance with everyone on the stage at the very end of the performance. To simply dance with people we did not even know yet finding a connection between us felt reviving and welcoming for all of us. We should take into account that welcoming feeling the dancers gave us and share that with others as well. 

Some questions to consider...
What did you find was the most important takeaway from visiting the Ndere Dance Center?
Do you believe people should embrace their own culture more? Why?
What was your most memorable moment when experiencing the culture?

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Hello fellow classmates, this is Michaela under Payton's account and I have some thoughts about our time in the Parliment building speaking with the Speaker of the Parliment. Now, it was fairly difficult for me to hear what she spoke about so I will write about a general experience with going through the process and rules of meeting her.

Personally, I did not find it surprising that we had to go through a lot of security, but, I found it odd that there were three steps of security. Especially because they checked us multiple times throughout the building once we were already cleared. A question that popped into my head due to all of the security steps was, did something occur in the building to cause the need for three stages of security? I wonder, what is security stages like in other countries government buildings? I have gone to the German government building and spoke with a member of their government, but we only went through one step of security. So yes, I am interested in why there are three stages of security here.

Another thing that fascinated me about our time in Parliment was how careful the employees seemed to be around us and around the building in general. There seemed to be a secretive and nervous energy around the building and I wonder if it was because we were there or if the energy in the Parliment building is like that always.

While meeting with the Speaker of Parliment I was nervous. Especially because of how the other employees of the government building were acting. One thing that I was intrigued by was that we all were told to stand up when the speaker entered the room. I thought that made her seem more like a Queen than a government worker.

The last thought I want to share is that I wonder why she agreed to meet with our group. I want to know her motivation for meeting with us and part of me wonders is if it was to try and impress us because we are students from America or if she would be willing to meet with a variety of different students.

So, now that I have shared my thoughts about our experience I have some questions for you about your thoughts on our time in Parliment.

1.) What were your feelings and thoughts about the process of security we went through?

2.) Out of all of the government workers we spoke to on our trip, who did you find to be most interesting? How do you feel about the way the Speaker answered questions compared to the two-panel members we spoke to?

3.) Did you feel that there was a secretive energy in the Government building and/or do you feel we were treated differently because we are American students?


Agriculture

During the agricultural visit, we toured farmer John's land to obtain a more in depth understanding of small-scale agriculture in the rural village. John explained the many challenges that accompany small-scale farming such as issues with lack of payment by the government, and loss of crops due to climate change. Along with those issues, small-scale farming is not a field in which many young people take an interest and talked about a few ways in which that could be a benefit to have them learn more. With the population expanding, more small scale farming will help to improve the economy and maybe even production later down the line. What other issues did anyone observe with small-scale farming?

Media in Uganda

Uganda's media has a dark history that is directly centered around the government. There has been many changes, but many things have stayed the same as well. We were bale to hear from an individual representing a radio station, investigative journalists, and an employee of television news reporting. The panel touched on issues in the media, as well as growths. The discussion was mainly focused on the corruption in the government and how it affects the media. 
The media often struggles with media freedom and the ability to have freedom of speech. During the last political election the government shut down all social media. The panel also discussed no job growth- even explaining how many media outlets hire family members or people connected to them rather than educated individuals. This had led to troubles questioning the economy because many journalists don't understand it. 

Questions:

1. What does the media need to change so that progression can be made towards a sustainable and developed economy in Uganda?


2. Should the government continue to have a role in the media? Is it necessary and if so, how much?

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Patrick Bitature: Business and Entrepreneurship

Patrick Bitature is the "Bill Gates" of Uganda. He had some very interesting ideas and his story was inspiring. After learning about his different businesses and what he has done for Uganda I found a theme. He mentioned many times how GOALS are what people need to be successful. It is important to map out your goals and have a game plan. Patrick has gone from telephones, to energy, to property and now to the oil industry. He has been an inspiration to many and his work has not gone unnoticed in Uganda. Based on all of the things he has done what do you think has been the most related to Sustainable Development and why? Also Patrick stated many different things related to culture and how you have to adapt yourself to wherever you are. How has the culture here changed the way you have thought and do you think it will be carried back the U.S.?

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Tori Meier's Blog Post

On Thursday, May 31st we visited the Anglican Church of Uganda Diocese and Mukono Hospital. Mukono has approximately four physicians and 32 nurses at their facility and sees upwards on 5000 patients. We toured the hospital and saw patient rooms, the labor ward, the laboratory, the maternal and child healthcare department, the dentistry area, operating rooms, and more. The hospital had a gangrene patient there who was waiting with a painful, rotting foot for a specialist to arrive and perform an amputation. Additionally, students were given the opportunity to peek through the window of an OR and watch surgeons perform a hernia repair.
In America, HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act: provides privacy and security provisions for safeguarding medical information) would restrict much of what we were able to do last Thursday- ie. seeing patients without their consent, watching surgery without signing confidentiality forms, etc. Why do you think Uganda doesn't have these regulations? Do you think they do have them and simply aren't enforced much like other laws and policies in Uganda?
Dr. Simon mentioned that the medical profession in Uganda is not attractive to people for various reasons. In your opinion, what factor causes this unattractiveness most and what do you think can be done to address the issue?
Lastly, Mukono doesn't have epidurals for mothers in labor and only uses local anesthesia in surgeries. Do you think this is an injustice for women and patients or do you think it is not a substantial issue considering they are used to their conditions? 

Thank you for your time, consideration, and smiles. Once again- this is TORI, not Jared. I mean Jarrett. Okay bye love you all.