June 15, 2012
I am an American woman who has been living and working in Uganda for over three years. I am a teacher by profession and taught in a Ugandan school for three years. At the beginning of 2012, I decided to use my skills and experience as a teacher with Fount of Mercy. I have seen many organizations doing work here in Uganda, but I do not respect all of them. I DO respect the wok Fount of Mercy is doing, because they partner with existing, local groups or institutions-- working WITH (not for) them to help them fulfill their mission. Fount of Mercy is doing excellent work in the Jinja area community to empower women. One major area of Fount of Mercy's work is vocational training. They train women in sewing and tailoring; two Ugandan women teach other women the skill of sewing on the local (non-electric) sewing machines. Since most clothing produced in Uganda is custom made, sewing is a lucrative small business here. Fount of Mercy also provides small business training to women in various communities in the Jinja area. They then support these women as they launch their business together. Of the three groups I know, one has started a village bank. The other two have created a local bakery and a local restaurant in their respective communities. One excellent component of this training is the follow-up support they give these women as they put their learning into practice. This support involves further financial advice, conflict resolution, and encouragement. These women are empowered to earn cash, which enables them to send their children to school and provide for other essentials like soap, lantern fuel, and sugar. I truly admire the work Fount of Mercy is doing. The directors have a humble attitude toward their work, knowing that working in another culture is a constant learning process. I consider myself very fortunate to be a member of the Fount of Mercy team here in Uganda. Fount of Mercy has afforded me the opportunity to train teachers, mostly women, to become more equipped in their profession. In turn, these teachers can positively impact the children of Uganda. Finally, I am grateful for the team at Fount of Mercy, for my co-workers are also my dear friends.
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