African Disco Dancing at a Ugandan Orphanage/Primary School

Yesterday, when our group arrived at an orphanage/primary school near Masaka, Uganda, the students flooded out of their classrooms and regular school was eventually canceled.

A friend and I had come to repair (or fix) some of the playground equipment at the school.  Others in our group were assigned other tasks including surveying the needs at the orphanage.  The list of needs is long.

We started by making repairs to the seesaw (teeter totter) we had installed in February.  A handle had broken off.  We found a new one and attached it.  Hopefully this time we will have a more permanent installation.  Then we moved on to the swing set.  We replaced 2 seats and added an 8th seat.  Our repair work (plus a trip to Masaka to order another seesaw) took all morning and part of the afternoon.

After we had finished our repair work, we hiked back toward the school classrooms.  In the largest, we could hear disco-type music blasting out.  Inside, were students (many orphans) wildly dancing and in the middle were the Utah women we were traveling and working with.  It was wild mass of humanity.  Despite the high temperature and humidity, everyone was having great time dancing.  I retired to a corner of the discoteque to watch the children.

Several children eventually joined me.  Each asking me to dance.  But I could only dance for a few minutes at a time.  I was tired from work, sunburned, and the heat and humidity were oppressive.  But it was great to see the elementary school children and the Utahns (including 3 students from USU) having such a good time.  The kids sitting with me grabbed my hands and helped me watch the dancing.  The Utahns and the Ugandan kids were all so fluid with their dance steps, that I for a moment wished I was 40-years younger.

One of the students sitting next to me and holding on tightly to my hand . . . “adopted” me and didn’t leave my side for the remainder of the afternoon.  She is 12-years-old and adorable.  I wish I could do more to help.  It was truly an afternoon to remember . . . disco dancing at a orphanage in southern Uganda.  How many people can say that they have done that?

This entry was posted in Entertainment, Personal Essays, Social Justice, Travel, uganda. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to African Disco Dancing at a Ugandan Orphanage/Primary School

  1. She’s twenty-two years old, raising fourteen little girls in a dot on a map called Uganda. How did Katie Davis, high school student from Nashville, Tennessee, end up mothering children in East Africa? In her own words . . .”Jesus wrecked my life. For as long as I could remember, I had everything this world says is important. In high school, I was class president, homecoming queen, top of my class. I dated cute boys and wore cute shoes and drove a cute sports car. I had wonderful, supportive parents who so desired my success that they would have paid for me to go to college anywhere my heart desired. But I loved Jesus.Slowly but surely I began to realize the truth: I had loved and admired and worshiped Jesus without doing what He said . . . I wanted to actually do what Jesus said to do. So I quit my life. I quit college; I quit cute designer clothes and my little yellow convertible; I quit my boyfriend. I no longer have all the things the world says are important. I do not have a retirement fund; I do not even have electricity some days. But I have everything I know is important. I have a joy and a peace that are unimaginable and can come only from a place better than this earth. I cannot fathom being happier. Jesus wrecked my life, shattered it to pieces, and put it back together more beautifully.”Katie’s boldness and compassion truly inspired me. I was amazed to find such wisdom in one so young. The lessons she has learned touched my heart. Soak in her story and let it change you. Then pass it on to every young person you know.

  2. Bob D. Henry says:

    The Basoga аre а tribe found іn the eastern part оf the country аnd bear many similarities wіth the Baganda. Theіr culture, language аnd music іs similar tо the baganda. They аlsо hаve а similar xylophone, called “embaire”, thаt plays а vital role аnd іs principally used іn the busoga court. The compository principles оf embaire music аre similar tо those оf the amadinda music оf buganda. The basoga employ procession style elements іn theіr dances, wіth females taking а lead role. Vigorous gyrating оf the hips аnd waist іs the mоst common wаy оf dancing.

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