Mullies man, Dominic Kerrigan recently visited Uganda as part of a Self Help Africa Group to view how aid raised here was assisting people in the African country in making life much better for the impoverished local people.
Following his recent return from Uganda, Dominic relates below the interesting story of how his trip there came about and the profound impact it has had on him.
"In 2016, I held a number of fundraising events for the charity Self Help Africa around North Leitrim. Through these efforts and with the help of family and friends, €3,867.18 was raised for the organisation.
"At that time the hope was that I would travel with a group of staff and supporters from Self Help Africa to Ethiopia to visit some of the projects there and take part in The Great Ethiopian Run.
"Unfortunately due to the security situation in the country at the time, the visit was postponed. Thankfully, this May, I got to visit some of Self Help Africa’s projects in Uganda and take part in a 10km run in the Uganda Marathon in the city of Masaka.
"I travelled with a group of 10, who were a mix of staff and fellow supporters like me.
"Throughout our week in Uganda we visited projects all over the country and I was moved and encouraged to see how the work that Self Help Africa does is really empowering people to live a life of hope, free from poverty.
"Self Help Africa work with local communities throughout Africa to provide agricultural expertise and support; this helps communities access markets and increase their profits.
"One of the more surprising parts of the trip was to see how farmers in the Kabale region in southern Uganda have begun growing Irish potatoes; this has resulted in the region providing 87% of the potatoes sold in the entire country.
"Our trip concluded with a cross country 10km run which was very demanding in the hills of Masaka. Overall this was an incredible experience, seeing the fantastic work that Self Help Africa do was absolutely inspiring, while the Ugandan people were always incredibly welcoming.
"I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who helped organise events and those who donated so generously, I cannot express my gratitude. I would especially like to thank my family, my good friend, Séan Dillon and most of all, my partner Jessica Barry.
"Each of them gave up so much of their time to fundraise for Self Help Africa. I am delighted to report that the money raised is going to worthwhile projects and helping to empower communities throughout Africa” Dominic states in his concluding remarks on his inspiring Ugandan trip.