Sad State of the School for the Deaf in Lira, Uganda

Today (6 Jun) we spent the day working at the Nancy School for the Deaf in Lira, Uganda.  The school is a sad place.  The dormitories are in poor condition and there are few recreational possibilities.  The school has no electricity and cows wander fairly freely through the school grounds.  We spent our time on two projects:

  • repairing the primitive solar-lighting system in the boy’s and girl’s dorms and
  • repairing the school’s 4-seat swing set.
Inside the Boy's Dormitory at Nancy School for the Deaf

Inside the Boy’s Dormitory at Nancy School for the Deaf

A couple of years ago, we had installed both the solar-lighting system and the swing set.  Both had fallen into disrepair.  Bill Grenney (director of SeeeMe, headquartered in Park City, UT) worked on the solar project and I worked on the swing set repair.  I was assisted (actually he did most of the work) by our driver Abdul.

Working on the Solar-lighting System in the Girl's Dormitory

Working on the Solar-lighting System in the Girl’s Dormitory

The initial hangers on the Nancy swing set were made locally and they hadn’t survived very well.  Only two of the 4 seats were still functional.  So we decided to replace all 8 hangers (2 for each seat) with ones that we had brought with us from the USA.  In addition to repairing the hangers, we made some other minor improvements.

Boy's Dormitory with Swing Set in the Foreground.

Boy’s Dormitory with Swing Set in the Foreground.

Once we finished our swing repairs, the kids immediately sprang into action.  They kept the swing set busy for the next 5 hour, come rain or shine.  And they used the set hard, making an almost 180 deg. arc with each pass.  The “new and improved” swing set seemed more than capable of handling the heavy use, which included helicoptering.  But only time will tell how tough our system is.

Enjoying the Swing Set at Nancy School for the Deaf in Lira, Uganda

Enjoying the Swing Set at Nancy School for the Deaf in Lira, Uganda

When we return in January, we will not only check out the status of our repairs, but we will also add more outdoor recreation equipment.  The residence school has far too little outdoor recreation equipment.

The kids at the school don’t have much.  Most go around bare-foot, though a few have flip-flops.  Their clothes are mostly threadbare.  The head teacher indicated that some of the children are just dropped off like so much excess baggage.  But despite everything, they seem remarkably happy.  They were curious about everything that we did.

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This entry was posted in Africa, Playground, Social Justice, uganda, Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Sad State of the School for the Deaf in Lira, Uganda

  1. Larry Brim says:

    Roger, I tried to comment earlier today on your 3/27/13 Henri Moser blog, but was unsuccessful. I also tried to email you using the rhansen@usbr.gov email address, but it didn’t go through. My wife is Henri Moser’s granddaughter. We would like very much to get in touch with you. You may have discovered the Henri Moser website, henrimoser.org, which we maintain. Look forward to hearing from you. Larry

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