2018 is certainly shaping up to be a big year for Ruddington’s Mustard Seed Project! This is the fundraising group set up by James Peacock Infant School teachers Sally Squires and Jayne Henson, inspired by their visit to Uganda in the summer of 2016.
Following the Project’s formal establishment as a registered charity, and the election of a board of trustees, they’re returning to Uganda to visit the communities they’re supporting. JPS assistant head teacher Sally and teaching assistant Jayne, along with St Peter’s Junior School Deputy Head, Ian Mawer, and Professor Louise Mullany from the University of Nottingham, are all flying out there at the end of March.
Mustard Seed Project trustee, Charlene Robinson, told us: “As well as doing hands-on work on the sustainable projects we’re sponsoring (including building raised beds to grow veg at the school on Tisai Island), Sally and Jayne are going to be leading a conference for 300 Ugandan teachers to share teaching styles. Louise is taking part in a conference in Kampala on African women’s leadership and empowerment. Ian will be completing fieldwork and taking photos to help document the work we’re doing.”
The team are also working on the enormous challenge of filling a 40 foot container with school and medical equipment, toys, clothes, books, etc. Charlene says: “Please get in touch if you have something to donate. We’re also looking for strong men and women to support us with the heavy lifting – even better if you’re strong and own a van! Everything needs to get from people’s homes to the warehouse, then from the warehouse to the container. Contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org if you can help.”
Something else to look forward to is another “Knickers for Knowledge” fashion show! This will be returning on Friday 9th March – and sold out last year – so keep an eye out for information about how to get tickets. As before, they’re asking for donations of second hand bras and new knickers to enable the girls and women in Uganda to attend school all month long. “We’d also like any donations of children’s books to fill the book shelves in the school” continues Charlene. “The bra bar will be returning, as will the ‘fountain of fizz’, not forgetting the opportunity to bag a fashion bargain.”
The Mustard Seed Project has also revealed the exciting news that it’s secured a book deal! ‘Footprints from Uganda’ will be available in spring 2019 and will include stories and letters which have been shared between children in Nottinghamshire and Teso, Uganda. It promises to provide a real insight into the differences and similarities between communities – and hopefully inspire greater understanding.
Charlene concludes: “Finally a huge thankyou to everyone who bought chickens, goats, sheep and cows for the families on Tisai Island – they were very well received and its lovely to think that we enabled such unusual presents at Christmas.”
Graham Wright via RUDDINGTON.info