On Friday night, thankfully after we uploaded the blog, there was a power cut. This meant no light, plug sockets or wifi. Needless to say, Callum still managed to spend 5 minutes trying to charge his phone!
When we woke up on Saturday morning the power was back on so we could get ready for our school trip with the Primary 6s from Mihabura. Our first stop was Shagasha Tea Company, where we were shown the tea manufacturing process. Everyone found it really interesting and we even got to touch the tea at different stages of the production. We also found out that the Wood Family Trust grows some of the tea the factory processes. It was great when we could show them the back of our polo shirts and say that they had also helped us to get to Rwanda. While waiting around outside the factory, I taught some of the kids to sing Flower of Scotland, while one of the older pupils – Sam – very accurately impersonated how all his teachers (and Shallum) walked.
The next stop on our road trip was lunch. We had an ‘all you can eat’ buffet and as the kids returned to the tables with volcanoes of food on their plates we assumed their eyes were bigger than their stomachs, but soon enough every single plate was scraped clean.
We headed to the hospital where the children were given a presentation on HIV and how to avoid it and then it was on to the radio station: Radio Rusizi. A tour of the studios revealed a small newsroom, a recording studio and a broadcasting studio (which was live!) Again there was some waiting outside but when one of us produced a camera this caused pandemonium and before we knew it we were celebrities with a queue of children waiting to take photos with us. You would think it was over when another kid would ask, “and me next?” During our moment of fame, three pupils – David and Sam and a girl whose name I don’t know – were chosen to speak on the radio. They were asked about the school trip and their thoughts on the radio station and even had the chance to thank Simon and RSVP charity. When they appeared from the studio they were greeted like heroes, everyone swarmed around them, chanting and cheering with such energy.
To top it all off, at the very last minute Mrs Hunter was dragged in to be interviewed as well. She was asked about the impact and the benefits to the kids that the trip would have. We are not speaking to her as she didn’t give us a shoutout.
All in all it has been an extremely surreal day that has probably boosted our egos more than needed.
Lots of love,
Meave, Jack, Callum and Shannon
(And Mrs Hunter and Ms Rigby)