ISEE Solutions

Investing in Sustainability, Education and Empowerment Solutions

ISEE Solutions - Investing in Sustainability, Education and Empowerment Solutions

March 15 2021 update

{note: please continue reading after Andrew’s report for some exciting news! -ed}

Greetings to you all, 

Happy Women’s Day from Uganda. On Monday 8th March 2021, we celebrated Women’s Day in Uganda so it was a public holiday that as Ugandans’ we embrace all sorts of holidays anyday anytime. Celebrations, breaks and holidays like these are deeply engraved in the culture and lifestyles of most Ugandans and we will take any day or time to chill. Ugandans like to party and do nothing most of the time, so we will take any holiday as an excuse not to work. But nonetheless we celebrated International Women’s Day with a Public event with the President giving a speech and many other activities. 

Uganda received its first batch of Covid 19 Vaccine on 5th March 2021, with 864,000 doses to be distributed among 45 million plus people who currently reside in the country. Of course the Health Minister was one of the first people to publicly receive one of the first doses. We can only hope that the other citizens like me and many others who may not have a direct route to getting this vaccine. We are eagerly waiting to hear what the criteria of how, who and when all of us can have access to this vaccine.

These last 10 days have not been very good for me after I caught a cold and a cough eventually. I was advised to take a few days off so that I don’t spread my germs, which I eventually did because my nose was too runny and I couldn’t move freely. Luckily it was not the Covid 19 virus because the flu and cough broke and I am now feeling much better. All of my work this week was done remotely on the phone to reach them and talk to them, find out on the progress.  

I was able to talk to Hadija N, Prossy L, Harriet L, Peter K, Pulakiseda N and Gertrude K. 

I would like to start with Peter K. someone most of you who have probably never heard of. Peter heads an organization called Reach Out Save A Young Mother, an organization that helps train young girls who have dropped out of school and can’t proceed with further education. His objective is to try and skill them for basic survival for both themselves. Peter and his team were renting a few rooms they could use as classrooms and dormitories for the girls and the boys eventually. They started out as a girls institution but the need arose and they had to include the boys in the program. They used to train in hairdressing and tailoring but they included other vocations like mechanics in the hope that they could interest the boys. So they looked out for little mechanic shops and enrolled whoever was interested in this program. ISEE Solutions Society got involved with them when Peter reached out to us a few years ago to help them repair their knitting machines and also help them with a few salon equipment and hair products. Like all or most of the schools in Uganda, Peters’ organization was affected by the pandemic and they closed business. He has been trying to contact us to help him with the re-establishment of the school and the program.

I spoke to Pulakiseda and she is doing well. Her store is doing great and I called in also to get some groceries from her shop. I got some rice, sugar, cooking oil and she helped me get a few vegetables from the market too. She got me yellow bananas, carrots, cucumber, green peppers, pineapples, and mangoes. These are supposed to help me in regaining my immunity as I recover from this cold and cough. Her business is doing well and she is always grateful for the opportunity she has had to grow her business once again.

Gertrude N. has finally gotten a house for rent. She had been looking for a house for such a long time that she had to close her business for over 5 months. The pandemic made the house search much harder so she later asked that she take a break to regather and recoup. This past week she called me and told me that she had gotten a breakthrough. Along with her brother they managed to get a house that they will share and co-rent together. This helps them to reduce on their individual expense bills but also to help support one another. At this stage in the game they just got the house and they are painting, trying to renovate the house so that they can have it ready and presentable for business. I hope to go visit them next week and probably see what she might need for her business. Gertrude owns a stationery and computer service business that offers photocopy and typing services.

Prossy L. was wondering how I was and actually called me first because it had been awhile since I last visited them. Prossy and her husband Henry are senior citizens and I couldn’t risk visiting them with my cold and cough. They are doing well, the pigs are growing fast, she said. They eat a lot more and it has been hot so the usual green compliments have not been plenty. She usually feeds the pigs with potato leaves and other greens and grasses as a way to compliment their feeding. Thereby the lack of rain and too sunshine has deprived them of greens hence limited feeding. We can only hope for the return of the rains to help improve the situation.

Last week Harriet was blessed with the opportunity to fund her tailoring shop and this week I called her to inform her about the progress. She was really excited and so grateful for the opportunity to start again and yet with a more exciting business prospect. Initially ISEE helped Harriet acquire a sewing machine and fabric to help her start a business in 2015. She struggled a bit and the pandemic was the last stroke to her business. After several meetings, she finally came up with the tailoring shop business and looks like we are on the way to possibly a great story of success. She has started looking out for a good location because all the funds have been availed for this particular business. Let’s keep our fingers crossed for Harriet that everything can work out well.

Lastly I had the opportunity to physically meet Amina and Hadija who I was excited to see. Firstly Amina, who was struggling the last time I met her, is still the game this week.


One of my greatest challenges has been keeping Amina in the game, somehow over the years her business would meet what I might call natural deaths. Her business would die for some reason. This week, I was glad to see her even though the batch of bananas she got last week were not mature enough which affected their ripening. This means that she was not able to sell as many bananas this week. I told her to continue keeping them in a warm place and they would eventually ripen.

Hadija’s chip shop

Hadija N. is doing okay but still complains about the authorities kicking them off the streets too early hence affecting their sales. She has resorted to trying to come early and prepare the chips early but also sell more before they are kicked off the road. 

Our Mama Boost of the Week is;

We have no potential boost this week because my aim was to put Angel N in this edition but all my visits right from the previous week and the phone calls this week have been in vain. Angel went to the village to help her mother build her house so has not been able to make it in time before my visit. The word is that she will be back by the weekend so I am keeping my fingers crossed. The reason why her business dropped was because she invested her profits plus some capital to help treat her mother when she needed surgery at one point towards the end of the year. I admired this.

I never want to close my reports minus thanking you all who have supported and continue supporting us. We are forever grateful for all your donations, moral and all forms of support you render to us. You surely make this world a better place one Mama at a time. Please continue to stay safe but remain sociable as we continue to end period poverty in our world.

Yours Sincerely

Andrew Echel 

Director for Programs, Uganda

ISEE Solutions Society

A big thank you to KSS!

ISEE Solutions would like to extend our sincere thanks to Kelowna Secondary School, teacher Ms. Light, teacher-librarians Ms. Manca and Ms. Cartwright, and students Bella, Kaelin, Abi, Bianca, Cailtyn, and Saskia.

l-r: Bella, Kaelin, Abi, Bianca, Caitlyn, and Saskia

Ms. Light’s grade 10 French Immersion class does a collaborative project with the school’s teacher-librarians where student groups prepare written and oral presentations on a charity of their choice. The winning group receives $200 from KSS to donate directly to their chosen charity and this year we were the proud recipients of this donation.

ISEE Solutions is so grateful for the next generation of engaged and passionate students who are already making a huge difference in our world. Thank you so much Bella, Kaelin, Abi, Bianca, Caitlyn, and Saskia!

A big thank you to Glenmore Elementary!

ISEE Solutions would like to thank Rhonda Draper and the staff and students of Glenmore Elementary who once again organized the ‘Month of Love’ charity drive.

Each year students and staff vow to give up a selected small expense for the month of February and instead donate the money they would have spent to a charity. Participants can donate directly to a charity of their choice or give it to GME who then donates it to a variety of local charities.

ISEE is very proud to be associated with this drive and we offer our humble thanks to all who participated.

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