Monday, 15 April 2019

Homeward Bound!

Hello everyone!

I hope you have enjoyed hearing all about the team's exploits on this blog. The trip hasn't been without its' challenges but the team have had an amazing trip and I hope they remember the memories they have made for many years to come. 

A quick travel update: the team have taken off from Istanbul and are on their way home! Unfortunately, their flight appears to have been 52 minutes delayed taking off and their estimated arrival time is now 15.28 into London Heathrow Terminal 2. You can follow their progress here:

Best wishes,
Anneliese and all at Inspire Worldwide

Sunday, 14 April 2019

Final Day in Uganda!

Dear readers,

Today has been long! We woke up at 5 am to make sure our bags were ready to go and that we had everything for chimp trekking. Everyone managed to haul themselves down to the restaurant to pick up a packed breakfast and put our bags in vans. As we started our hour drive to the chimp trekking we watched the sunrise, dazzling colours of pink, red and orange. We were shocked to find elephants eating breakfast only 50m from the van! This perked everyone up and got us ready to see more animals for the day.

Immediately after reaching the point where we got out of the vans many girls needed to use the bathroom. Luckily we were surrounded by lavaTREES (Credit-Grace). So after a brief break we started the trek, almost immediately taking a right into the jungle. Our guides Robert and Laurence had given us a lot of information about the wildlife in the area. We were excited to try and see as many of the 8 different primates as possible. The walk was beautiful as we were surrounded by all kinds of plant life and we could hear the diverse animal life.

After approximately 2 hours of walking in silence, so as not to scare animals away, we all came to a halt excitedly looking for what Robert was pointing at ahead. We soon discovered it was two chimpanzees a baby and a mother. The baby made us all smile by playing happily in the vines and at the same time giving those with powerful camera zoom an opportunity to get good photos. Now deep in the forest we went in search of the rest of the group as we could hear them communicating and hoped to see more. Unfortunately nothing prevailed as we went fully off track with Robert cutting the plants with a machete.

As we started our return journey we were disheartened to find that it was almost entirely uphill with some steep sections, however, with the team helping each other we all emerged from the trees and waited on the side of the road for the drivers to come and find us. Our next long break was lunch, where we all felt very out of place in our dirty trousers and sweaty tops! We had delicious food choosing between burgers, pasta and sandwiches. After enjoying this (and entertaining ourselves guessing where the tourists were from) we hit the road once again heading for the equator this time. It took about 3 hours and we were shocked to find that it was almost 6 o’clock as we arrived at the marked spot of the equator. We had a quick photo opportunity and toilet break.

Following this we embarked on our final leg of the journey, on the way we told fun stories many of them very embarrassing! We are now at a hotel in Entebbe where we have  had a good last meal in Uganda and had the opportunity to take a refreshing shower. We are about to have a final meeting with our inspire leaders and then head off to the airport. We are all excited to see everyone in less than 24 hours!
-By Anya

There are some requests from girls inserted here:
Lily - peanut M&Ms
Teya - McDonalds order
Hana - Your amazing Quorn pasta 😊 xxx
Kirsty - Tina, I trust you will bring me my favourite food and snacks xxx
Charlotte - hi mummy please surprise me with yummy food and a jumper
Hannah - pink lady apples and anything I will like (probs phone too) also tell Bette to comment on the blog
Liv - put the kettle on x
Maddy - mumsey i cannot wait for some cookies and love xoxo
Diya - crisps&phone please
Izzy - dried mango
Grace - I’m craving food please can we go after you pick me up?
Thank you so much we love you all xx

Saturday, 13 April 2019

All the animals!

After a bright and early wake up call at 5:30, we got up, ate breakfast and left for the safari at 6:30 sharp. Although it was dark outside, morale was high and everyone was so excited to potentially see lions, elephants, buffalos, monkeys etc. The safari began with us seeing many antelopes, water bucks and buffalos, where we learnt that the number of rings an animal had on its horns represented how old it was. Amazingly we saw two lions, one male and one female, who were awkwardly in the middle of a mating session. Also, we were able to see many hippos, some as close as 5m away, bathing in mud baths and cooling off in the lake.

At one point during the journey, the rangers saw elephants around 500m in the distance, which we then set off to hopefully see up close. Although we did find the elephants, we struggled to get photographs however we saw a bull elephant on the side of the road as we were driving past. Everyone in the group all agreed we had never seen anything so breathtaking and knew that the distance we were away from the elephant was a once in a lifetime experience.

Eventually we had a break at one of the craters in the park and were able to visit local markets where everyone bought souvenirs and gifts for friends and family (as well as themselves!!). We reached the salt mines on the lake at around 1:00 and were given a tour of the traditional techniques people used to extract the salt and how 60% of the workers there were females. Finally we were able eat a delicious lunch of chips and sandwiches, with a spectacular view of the channel between Lake George and Lake Edward. We were also lucky enough to see huge storks and African ferrets, followed by a 5 minute drive to the docks for our boat cruise.

We boarded the boat and set off in our gigantic life jackets in hopes of spotting a range of species on the way. We were able to see crocodiles, buffalos drinking at the channel banks, many birds including the African fish eagle which was incredible to witness. Furthermore there were many hippos and baby hippos as well as baby warthogs who were too shy to stay for long. The boat cruise ended with some brilliant views of the sun and mountains as well as seeing the locals prepare themselves for fishing.

On our journey back to safari camp we enjoyed the sun and loved the company of a family of baboons which were just as interested in us as we were in them. Right before arriving at Simba camp, one of the drivers spotted an elephant in the distance which was a wonderful way to finish the day. I think everyone will agree that today was one of the best days of our lives and one that we will never forget.

Written by Diya

P.S Mia has written a blog but forgot to write her name:/

“Watched the game on the telly- disappointing to lose but hopefully you had fun!”~Anya

“Look at that pond” - Lucy

A long day to Safari...continued!

Dearest blog readers,

Unfortunately due to the craziness of the party the blog was not complete so here is an insert from Maddy and Charlotte continuing from their blog last night.

We finished the day with a party celebrating our time in Bwaise and Liz Parker’s birthday. We were surprised with traditional Ugandan dancing including the bootylicious moves of me, Charlotte, Teya, Tom and Reesa. We ate cake and danced the night away #doyoubelieveinlove.
We clambered into bed after an exhausting day of fun. The vibes of joy and excitement were tangible as we dreamt of safari. #luciddreams
Love life, love liberty, love laughter
Miss yall
Maddy and Charlotte

Right enough of that Maddy and Charlotte . On with the next day...
The morning began early with bags being packed into the cars. We all split into three groups and headed off for our next location 8 hours away. The journey was thrilling and felt like one hour with many stops at Ugandan petrol stations. In my group Emma captivatingly told true crime stories which made the journey fly by. Unfortunately we did get stuck into a torrential rain storm lol after our buffet lunch. We even saw a baboon!!!! It was shamazing and got us so excited for our safari day tomorrow. When we finally arrived at the safaris accommodation we were all excited at the pasta given to us. We love it here, so many animals already.
Missing everyone xoxo Gossip girl

Friday, 12 April 2019

A long day to Safari!

Hello All!

The team have very spotty WiFi over in Queen Elizabeth and haven’t been able to send over a full blog and pictures. This morning, they have said an emotional goodbye to Bwaise and travelled the long journey over to Queen Elizabeth National Park where Simba Safari Camp awaited. The camp is located atop a hill with incredible views of Lake Kikorongo.

Tomorrow, the team will be up early to head out on a 4x4 game drive; wildlife in the national park includes elephants, buffaloes, Uganda kobs, waterbucks, warthogs, giant forest hogs, lions, leopards and hyenas! After a spot of lunch, the team will head back out for their boat cruise up the Kazinga Channel where they should see hippos lazing in the water, buffaloes cooling off in the river or some elephants coming for a drink if they're lucky...

More blogs and photos to come in the morning!

Thursday, 11 April 2019

Final day on Project

‘Ello rents! Today was our last day in Bwaise, but nevertheless one of the best. A prompt start at 6 allowed us to get stuck into the project although included some intense complaints due to those African rays. We went to Affcad school and organised a sports day for the children. We ran stations of football, yoga and relays as well as briefly participating in the teaching. Then the students returned to lessons and we cracked on with manual labour. We made some stellar progress and are all so proud of our work.

The day continued with the last girls for girls session which was very emotional for all. They were pretty unimpressed with our British snacks and massively outshined our efforts by offering beautiful dresses for us to try on. We then had our Last Supper after a brief 2 hour wait due to “Africa Time”.

Home visits and construction - continued...

Grace wrote this blog last night...and then fell asleep with it! The full blog below...

Today we woke up at 6:30 and got ready for the long day of project work ahead of us. Francis, the owner of our new guesthouse, made us some delicious cake and sandwiches, which were greatly appreciated. We then headed to the old guesthouse for breakfast, with Sophie. After breakfast, we got the minibus straight to the school to start the project work, on the playground.

Today, we managed to complete three structures with Stevo, bricklaying and cementing for the sandpit, and we helped Eddie and Stanley to finish off the painting, in the classrooms. Before our work Hana gave us a motivational speech before the day began, as she was our project leader for the morning. We all worked incredibly hard, which made me extremely proud! We were rewarded with a lovely lunch and an ice-cold soda! However I’m not so sure the orange rehydration drinks were as greatly appreciated...

After lunch, the girls (from Girls 4 Girls) came to join us, at the project site, to help with the last few bits of work. It made the work quick and efficient, and it was a really nice opportunity to spend some more time with them. All of the kids were so excited to see us throughout the day, and had great fun trying on all our sunglasses and work gloves! This was so special to see and is definitely something I will treasure forever. After finishing our work, we split into two groups for the home visits in Bwaise. My group visited Jojo’s house, where we met her three younger brothers, her older sister, and her mum and dad. It was such an amazing experience to be invited into her home and to learn a bit more about her everyday life. She even told us about her favourite TV soaps! Lucy was regretted holding Jojo’s baby brother, although she came away with what the family called ‘a blessing,’ (aka a large stain on her trousers). After we left, Jojo gave us a piece of a small orange to try, which was very sour!

After the home visits, we returned to the old guesthouse for some dancing and dinner. Then, we said our goodbyes, and returned back to the new guesthouse. We had our debrief, before showering and climbing into bed, after a tiring yet extremely rewarding day. Hopefully tomorrow will be the perfect ending to a perfect week.

By Grace

“It suddenly got very warm baby peed on lap” - Lucy

“Happy Birthday Guncles!” - Diya

“Me and my bag have one thing in common MIA” - Mia

“No that’s a Syphilis (meant to say Physalis)” - Mia

“What came first the chicken or the egg?” - Hana

“Who is the mysterious ‘prbogger’?” - Grace

“I’m actually really jealous of my bag I’ve never been to Budapest” - Izzy

“Jacob’s crackers never tasted so good” - Teya

“Finally learnt how much unnecessary stuff I pack” - Grace