Geoffrey and his family live in Kayoro, a rural area about seven miles outside of Tororo, Uganda. They are members of the small community group called Makimoth, founded with the help of Give Us Wings in 2007. A few members live in semi-permanent houses made of metal sheets, but most live in grass thatched houses with no windows and only a torn sheet for a door.

The parents and children usually all sleep in one room on mats; those who can afford decent bedding sleep on thin mattresses. Most of the families are peasant farmers who grow crops (rice, ground nuts, cassava, potatoes, maize, beans) for food. Makimoth means: Taking it slow. And these members have embodied that motto by being purposeful, focused and patient. They have participated in organic farming training, literacy and business training and have received small grants and interest free loans through Give Us Wings’ Building Businesses for Family Sustainability (BBFS) program.

Geoffrey has benefited from all three phases of grants, loans and trainings from the Building Business for Family Sustainability (BBFS) program. He has been trained in business management, record keeping, organic farming, and enterprise selection and analysis. He has been able to expand his crops, and his tree-seedling business in particular is doing very well. Here is a photo that was taken of Geoffrey in January 2015 during a BBFS meeting with Give Us Wings during a volunteer trip. Geoffrey brought his seedlings to show the group.

Geoffrey with some of his seedlings.

Some of Geoffrey’s family members get malaria on occasion, but the rate has been reduced now that the family sleeps under treated mosquito nets. Their house has also been sprayed so that has helped as well. When the family members do “fall sick” they access treatment from St. John’s Kayoro Health Center.

He and his wife Lakeri Nyandun have many children. His daughter Prisca who is now in Primary 7 is enrolled in a private school and doing great. Although they have made some positive strides, it is still a struggle for the parents to pay for high quality education for their children. Many children are “chased from school” for not paying fees.

Geoffrey with his daughter, Prisca.