June 23, 2009

AGYA Seizes Opportunity to Move to Larger Facility

In December 2008, when AGYA leaders selected a 6 room house in Nabulagala as the site of our community center, they thought the space inside the house and the gated concrete compound would be more than enough space to accommodate the community the organization planned to serve. However, within just a few short months, AGYA had registered more than 200 women and children. It became evident that the 6 room community center was too small. In addition to placing a cap on enrollment, AGYA co-founders Divinity Barkley and Abraham Matovu decided to start searching for a new space.

By early June, Barkley and Matovu had located a 7 room, 2 story gated facility with a compound nearly three times the size of the previous facility. With the fundraising help of the USC student volunteers who spent 4 weeks working and teaching in Uganda, AGYA was able to secure the space.

Located in Lubya, the new space is only a short distance away from the previous facility in Nabulagala. With larger rooms and less population density, the space is ideal for AGYA’s current needs. Additionally, the compound is mostly grass so there is ample space to conduct outdoor, games, activities, and classes.

Above: AGYA Youth Leader, Happy Namutebi conducts discussion workshops at the new AGYA learning center.

Below: AGYA Members in front of the learning center after the weekly Sunday meeting.

AGYA Board Member Namuyaba Temanju recently visited the new AGYA learning center. Born in Uganda, Temanju is a trained mediator and facilitator in the field of conflict resolution and interethnic relations. In addition to her position as a Board Member with the Amagezi Gemaanyi Youth Association, Temanju works at Colorado State University.

While visiting Kenya last week, Temanju took the opportunity to observe the work that AGYA conducts on the ground in Uganda.

“I am very impressed with the growth within the last 6 months. Seeing photos and hearing updates from AGYA leaders does not quite capture the transformation that is happening within the communities AGYA serves. I just don’t know how to express it in English, but in Luganda, we say: kyewunyisa. It means that AGYA’s work in the Lubya-Nabulagala community is astounding, incredible, amazing, or indescribable” said Temanju.

Above: Board Member, Namuyaba Temanju at the new AGYA learning center with AGYA Co-Founders Divinity Barkley and Abraham Matovu