In His Image International, a volunteer team of four residents of Philadelphia (Melanie Tabakin, Chris Tabakin, Stephen Swymer and Ellen Donhoe), made a brief, but incredibly impactful visit to Bulenga, Uganda from the first of January to January 9th.
During their stay here, IHI International provided funds for renting a space for the sewing school intended for persons with disabilities for a period of 6 months. They also provided funds for the painting and electrical installation for the school, four sets of sewing machines, fabric, tables, seats, flat irons, and other materials for the Sew Much Hope program. With the space ready for students, Ellen Donhoe spent her week training those with disabilities or those with children with disabilities. She provided teachings of tailoring and sewing to 7 women with disabilities and one woman with a child with a disability. The week was an incredible success for the sewing school, as the groundwork was laid and spirits were high at the thought of continuing on.
Professor Stephen Swymer was engaged in the training of local teachers at three different schools: All Saints Preparatory School, Good Hope Children’s Foundation, and Pearl Junior School. These workshops attracted a total of 98 teachers. Stephen Swymer successfully brought his teaching wisdom and experience to share with these teachers, and upon completion, each attendee was provided a certificate of completion.
In addition to providing funds for the Sew Much Hope program and providing unique and useful skills and talents, IHI International has done much more to better the community. Funds were provided from the group to Good Hope Children’s Foundation for water supply and funding of food for orphans enrolled at Good Hope every month for one year. The group of volunteers has also donated medical supplies such as feeding tubes, purchased two mattresses for Mariam Nakabanda, a 25-year-old woman with a disability, donated a wheelchair to Teddy Nantongo, a woman with amputated limbs, for mobility, and brought in a donation of a new laptop from Debra Jablonski.
We are so proud of partnering with IHI International. Their kind hearts and hard work will always be appreciated and has made an enormous impact. Together, we can.