On the 7th September 2012, our Chairman Lawrance and his wife Monica set off for a 3 month stay in Kabale, Uganda with a focus on strengthening and developing relationships with our NGO partners there and building their capacity. At a time when there is a spotlight on corruption associated with aid going to developing countries it is important that we ensure that our NGO Partners have the policies, processes and systems in place that will give reassurance to our supporters.
It was to prove a roller coaster stay with many highs and some lows, various challenges but much progress. Whilst Monica concentrated on working on improving academic standards withon the schools that we work, with Lawrance was involved in developing and implementing new financial policies and new accounting systems and working with each of the NGO partners to strengthen their governance structures.
It was reassuring to see throughout the trip that the Alongside Africa maxim of ‘opportunities, not aid’ has such a strong resonance within the communities that we work with. People who have so little still have their self esteem and do not simply want to receive hand outs; they continually tell us that they simply want an opportunity to help themselves.
As a result of the success of this trip Monica and Lawrance will be returning for a further three months in Uganda towards the end of January 2013.