Bufumira Island – A heartwarming initiative took root on the weekend of 11-13 August 2023 when the Rotaract and Rotary Club of Bwebajja in collaboration with the Rotaract Clubs of Bwerenga, Garuga, Bunga, Kawempe, and the Rotary Club of Nalumunye embarked on the second phase of the Adopt Bufumira Island project. This remarkable effort has rekindled hope and greatly improved the lives of the islanders.
With an unwavering commitment to the common good, the Adopt Bufumira Island project addressed critical aspects of life and left a profound impact on every corner of the island. Rotary’s five core areas—disease prevention and treatment, water hygiene and sanitation, basic education and literacy, maternal health, and environmental protection—were at the forefront of this transformative mission.
The project started with a health camp that provided a lifeline to nearly 300 individuals on the island. In addition to essential medical care, the camp served as an educational platform that spread valuable knowledge about health. HIV, malaria, and cancer testing services were carried out, bringing the gift of early detection and care. The embrace of the project extended further, mothers-to-be were gifted with mama kits, each household with mosquito nets, and girls at school with reusable pads. Adding a touch of sustainability, the planting of fruit trees at a local school underscored the project’s commitment to nurturing both the mind and the environment.
The highlight of this encouraging venture was the commissioning of the island’s first bio-digester toilet, two life-giving boreholes, and a renovated classroom block for Bufumira Primary School. The ceremony was graced by Rtr. Joseph B. Ssengooba, District Rotaract Representative-Elect, exuded a sense of promise for the island’s future. Ssengooba’s impassioned words made clear his determination to direct similar transformational efforts to other islands during the coming Rotary year with the aspiration of extending this lifeline to at least 10 other islands across Uganda.
In a deeply emotional moment, Grace Nakato, a resident of Bufumira Island, shared her thoughts: “The medical camp was a lifeline for us. Not only did we receive medical care, but we also gained invaluable knowledge on how to maintain our health. Mosquito nets and mama kits are a real blessing, which will undoubtedly improve our lives.”
John Ssempala, a parent and dedicated community member, echoed this sentiment: “The new classroom block resonates with our hopes for a brighter future for our children. Boreholes bring us clean water, a basic necessity that now ensures the health and prosperity of our families.”
Prossy Namubiru, a schoolgirl, wore a bright smile as she exclaimed, “The reusable pads have lifted the weight off our shoulders and enabled us to go to school with confidence every day. Moreover, the newly planted fruit trees at our school have transformed the landscape into a haven of delight.”
The Adopt Bufumira Island project is a testament to the remarkable results that can be achieved through joint efforts. It not only touches lives but also ignites the flame of hope in hearts. As ripples of the project continue to spread, Rtn. Annie Ninyesiga, President of the Rotary Club of Bwebajja, expresses her sincere gratitude to all who contributed to this triumph. This included Rotary Family Health Days, TASO Entebbe, and Kisubi Hospital. A special mention goes to international benefactors – Salmon HVAC, Green Collective, and Salmon Electric – for their role in helping to improve water and sanitation levels on the island.
The transformation stories from Bufumira Island are not just anecdotes; they are a testament to the resilience, unity, and profound impact that compassionate efforts can have.