Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Carpentry Day

Africa is great! I love Africa and I'm learning A LOT! However, there are a few things here in Uganda that need challenging, in my female, western, opinion. ;) A couple of them are, a) gender roles, and b) taking initiative to get things done.

Now, we have had a perfectly fine, newly made water filter that only needed a stand to be placed on so we could use it. But it sat in the storeroom for weeks before me and Stacey, one of our DTS students from the US, decided we needed to just build one ourselves. Her dad is a carpenter and I'm no stranger to a hammer and nails, so it was a go. We bought nails in town, found leftover lumber from all the construction on the base, a saw, a hammer and we were on our way.

Our other American sister, Laura, also joined us and away we went. We attracted the attention of a few of our male counterparts who lent their recommendations and their hands so it was a gender-mixed project, fine by me, because I want to see men and women working more together in all areas: the kitchen or the workshop.

After the stand was made, and the guys left, we girls decided to make our very own project. A bench for the girls room. And we did it! Ourselves! Woo hoo! It's weird that it should be such a big deal, but here in Uganda, it kind of is. One of the women walked by and oooed and awed at our creation. We felt pretty good about ourselves that day.

Not just pretty faces...;)

The bench and Stacey

The water filter

Me, Laura, Stacey

Joseph, helping me to hammer the nails

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