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AfriDACA Visit

Eleven pupils from a Darwen high school have travelled to Uganda to work with children from the Acholi community.

Along with two teachers, the Darwen Aldridge Community Academy pupils worked in partnership with the CRED Foundation, a registered UK charity.

The pupils took part in a project called AfriDACA, and got to teach the children of the Acholi tribe, who were displaced from their homeland during the civil war.

As part of the visit they delivered lessons to young people before providing the adults of the Acholi community the tools to continue with the work themselves.

The aim of the trip, the fourth 'AfriDACA' trip organised by the Academy, was to improve educational outcomes and quality of life for those helped in Uganda, whilst giving students the opportunity to experience a very different culture and challenge themselves to adapt to very new and different circumstances.

A spokesperson for DACA said: "We prepared lessons which were delivered to young people who have limited access to education through a charity, and to children for whom education is out of reach and cannot access the massively oversubscribed charitable input.

"Bringing two diverse groups of people together and focusing on our shared humanity, we aimed to reveal the strength and resilience of the Acholi people."

The Acholi people were forced to flee their homeland in the north of Uganda during the Ugandan Civil War and settled in the city of Kampala, living in slum conditions with very few civil and legal rights.

Many of the children have no access to formal education and it's those children that the pupils supported through the project.

As well as teaching young children in the local school, the Darwen students visited the children’s homes and had the chance to talk to the community and see living conditions at first hand.

Student, Courtney Ibbetson, said: "Coming to Uganda has been a life changing experience.

"I’ve learnt some huge life lessons and most importantly not to take the small things like a working toilet for granted.

"The things I’ve seen whilst being out here have changed my perspective on life.

"Seeing people much worse off than me has enabled me to open my eyes to things that I need to change within my lifestyle.

"I will forever be grateful for this opportunity to give knowledge and to teach the children in the Acholi quarter."

The team of students had to raise £1600 each to fund the project and achieved their target by raising money through bag packing, quizzes and school discos.