My latest trip took me to a new country which was Uganda in the continent of Africa! I’d been looking forward to this trip to see Lake Victoria and explore a new destination and it was only a short 4 hours and 50 minutes over to Entebbe International Airport with just the one service on the flight. We landed at 14:15 and the drive over to the hotel took almost two hours, the drivers had said that the traffic was bad on the usual route and did they mind if we took an alternate route? The captain said that was fine if it was to get us there quicker, and this took us on a really scenic route through rural Uganda and my what an eye opener it was. As a Geography graduate I have learnt so much about under developed countries, but until you actually see it, it doesn’t really hit you. There were children running around bare foot and playing in dirt, people carrying tubs of water to their homes and very little infrastructure around. It was truly heart breaking to see especially as the divide between wealth and poor was so apparent as we pulled into our hotel resort. It really did make me think about everything and appreciate it so much more.
After we checked in, we were taken on a golf buggy to our rooms and a few of the crew had arranged to meet downstairs for dinner in a couple of hours. So I showered and changed and headed out to have a wander around the grounds of the resort before meeting for dinner that evening.
The weather was lovely in Entebbe, a nice 25 degrees although its a malaria risk country so I was wearing my jumpsuit as I’m prone to being bitten and being along side a lake there are even more mosquitos.
The sun was setting as we ate dinner, many of the crew ordered the Tilapia as it’s whats best to eat in Uganda however I opted for the mango and avocado salad to start which was absolutely unreal and then for the ribs! I did take a photo of the captains Tilapia though as it did look super good.
After a few hours I was feeling really sleepy and more than ready to crawl into bed before my early start the next morning. Waking up at 6:30am I got changed and met another economy girl Natalia to go for breakfast before we visited the Ugandan Orphanage.
Our driver picked us up at 8:30am and we made our way over to the orphanage with donations of things they said they need. The Nsambya Babies Home takes in abandoned children from hospitals and the streets with no known or contactable relatives. The orphanage I visited was specifically for children under the age of 5. As soon as we walked into the open area the children were being fed breakfast, however one small boy ran straight over to me and jumped into my arms and just cuddled me. I could tell he just wanted to be loved as they must not get a lot of affection in the orphanage and it broke my heart. I then went and sat down on the floor with the rest of the children who were drinking cups of what looked like a runny porridge out of plastic cups along with a small bread roll. They were all very interested in asking me what my name was and kept saying “Jessica” over and over again. They all also wanted to try my sunglasses on and loved that they could see their reflections in the lens. So many of the kids were fighting over who could sit on mine and Natalia’s knee and get our attention.
It was so sad to see the children in tattered clothes and many of them were run down as a lot had runny noses. However they were all smiling and all seemed so positive despite their upbringing, I know I’ve already said this but it didn’t half put everything in my life into perspective. When I think I’m having a bad day, I will remember this exact trip and take a step back and appreciate everything that I do have and how fortunate I am. After playing with the children for around 45 minutes, we needed to leave so that we could call at the market before heading back to the hotel for our wake up call. As we were leaving, one of the children ran after us to follow us out which was so difficult to see. I wish I could have adopted them all, I will most definitely be heading back here on this trip to bring more donations of things the Babies Home needs.
We weren’t able to take pictures inside of the orphanage, however this is a list of things they do need so if anyone is in Entebbe and wanted to donate or even make a cash donation here is what they need.
We then stopped at a local market which was beginning to close for the day to buy some local gifts which I bought a lot of before we made our way back to the hotel.
It was a lovely but very eye opening layover. To see such a divide between the rich and the poor was really heart breaking and I don’t think we know how fortunate most of us actually are. I will most definitely be back to visit Uganda at some point!