A Chance to Dream
It has been a while since i last came on here, I felt best to take a break as I prepared for a project that would surely involve every bit of me. My mental strength was to be tested and having this in mind surely gave me the right preparation. I have seen, lived and also coordinated projects in slums before. Why is this different from any of what i have experienced? Will start with breaking it down for you, I lived in one of the biggest and not so popular slum in Kampala as a young boy. My dear grandmother used to sell liquor and it was also home for her. It was not a pleasant experience being young,looking back now, I feel it was quite crucial in my development. My mother moved her to the country which was more spacious and safer. Fast forward as a young man at University, in my Christian group called a cell we reached out to a crowded home in a slum buying medicine and food items for a lady looking after over eleven children in a very small shelter. Most of these malnurished children belonged to young prostitute mothers who barely knew the where abouts of the responsible fathers. With such experience I still have never gotten used to the living conditions of people in Slums. Through a lovely friend Kim from Canada,I was again on another mission. Seeing children running from one end to another with torn clothes worse than my rugs, yet with big smiles beats my understanding. Kim introduced me to Sam the coordinater of Kids Club an organization that runs programmes that include sports and Music to mention but a few. It is quite refreshing to know that young Ugandans are doing their best to allow children to be children. The adults too look on as they go about their daily chores. Katanga Slum is one of the very many found in Kampala the capital of Uganda. The dusty streets of my beloved city to a certain extent make one feel that they are intended to strike the balance between such terrible living conditions in slums and the enviable neighborhoods where the rich reside as well as the commercial buildings. Yet for all the potholes and poor drainage even in the city can never be enough to console these people whose situations are without color.
'I believe!' he seems to say
By 12:45 pm on the 26th of march, I was already at this small centre that is used for both Church and school. Armed with powder paints Paper and colored pencils, my first class was slowly coming together. Like we had agreed a week before, I would work with the music class first. While waiting for the rest, we broke the ice with introductions singing as well as dancing. Unbelievable moments that made me feel like being young again. If only it was that easy. Well it all got more interesting with storytelling which got every body's imagination wild. Most of these lovely children wanted a chance to test their imagination by making up a story. One of these stories was rather strange, surely broke my heart. This story was about a Dinasour that infected the Elephant with HIV Aids. Every one burst out laughing as this little boy shared, including yours trully. This was to later convict me heavily. It all made sense, the plight of people living in such terrible conditions that include drugs, lack of proper hygiene, and yes the HIV Aids virus that has become so normal to these innocent young souls who laugh about it in a made up story a sign of a deeper lying problem coming to the surface for sure. I was to later learn from Kim that as we all had a lovely time, a little child was dying in his bed of this dreaded virus. He had not eaten in 3 days and his frail figure in one of the tiny rooms in this slum had left Sam speechless and confused. He is well respected by almost everyone and he should know better than any of us. Unfortunately this is a situation no one can get used to no matter how long you have seen it happen. Not even Sam.
Dreams getting color in Katanga
First time handling paint and brushes and the best part is no rules you're drawing is to represent your imagination. Colors to bring life and also signify a deeper longing for a destiny much more appealing and worthwhile. Everyone has a right to dream for a future not necessarily as bad as their situations are. Our country has the youngest population with up to 51% under 15 years and with almost no parents many of these youngsters could only be left with night mares. Most of them forced to grow up so soon because of situations whose solutions become so elusive with every passing day. Hope a forgotten word in their vocabulary indeed. A world so deem and full of night mares can crave for color to ignite dreams that could change their situations.
more color lets share it.
I stood with my mates on the roadside yelling at each other on top our voices on seeing a car come by.
"That's mine no I saw it first, ok thats mine..." All of us as youngsters sharing interests. We started making cars using bottle tops and empty small boxes. This moved onto wire cars balls using plastic bags, the list is endless. A childhood mixed with experiencing all the small things in such a lovely neighbourhood, living in a slum for a little while and the country side as well. All contributing to what i strive for daily. I am called to use all these experiences and testimony to engage young ones in schools, as well as the comunity which includes slums. An hour spent with lovely children can turn their night mares into colorful dreams. An hour spent with these youngsters could save them from getting into trouble which includes abuse, drugs name it. Revealing my dreams that have come true and art as well as sharing bigger ones practically surely makes all these moments worthwhile. Organizations like Kids club are doing such an awesome job and need prayers and support. Teens Uganda wow i would never do this without such amazing people driven by compassion that only comes from God. In Painting dreams i leave you a hint of me dreaming. A child out there deserves this chance too.
Commissioned paintings come in handy and this one has surely tickled my fancy bringing back all the childhood artistic memories. As a youngster in school I always took time drawing cars on almost every blank paper I came across. It became some kind of obsession that also turned out to be some kind of competition between me and my friends especially Ssekamanya who seemed to have a lot more space to draw. This obviously piled more pressure on us, yours truly drawing in my mathematics book. It was somewhat naughty but a priceless memory not surprising that mathematics remained my achilles' foot throughout my school life. I look back and think for a moment what was, where I am and what kind of car i would love to own. Many come to mind, in the sports car category the Buggatti Veyron, Zhonda, Ferrari and Aston Martin. And now for our dear roads in Kampala a Range Rover Vogue Sport and Audi Q7 to mention but a few. Typical Boy dreams.
Lightening quick Veyron oil on canvas
My brother Nicholas entrusted me with this beautiful task which has been such a pleasure. What an experience it has been with every brush stroke causing so much sensation and excitement. Going about the job with as much concentration as possible for yours truly who easily gets carried away. I have had and still have so many dreams. This surely is one of the biggest. Like a typical man whose toys are closer with a little bit of fantasy, I desire to own or drive one of the best there is. Painting the fastest car and also the most expensive does not necessarily mean that I get to drive it now. It's half realized never the less knowing that I only have to aim the highest i can and falling shot is victory all the same.
Such a dream will not bring me fulfillment at all if along the way my ultimate mission is never fulfilled.
Two worlds coming togther, me dreaming with color and a little girl and her friends happy to have a balloon or a tin to mix her colors. Humble beginnings never underestimated.This is what i bring to the table Use it Lord. Use it for your glory Amen.
A great thank you to Sam, Kim and the kids Club for making this happen. It is only the begining. Another great thank you to my team Allan,Reagan and Shai Richards may God bless you. Would never do this without anyone of you.