What is the project?
In partnership with the German non-profit organisation Music Connects, and through the official support of the UNHCR Uganda, we have launched our Lab Uganda and Community Music programme in BidiBidi refugee settlement. The German-Ugandan Development Cooperation supported the manufacturing of the truck, which is ultimately a lab fully equipped with a recording studio, a fold-down stage, a cinema, and fully functioning WiFi. This mobile machine is now moving around the Zones of Bidibidi refugee settlement, allowing the residents to use all of the equipment in the truck, and to also access Music and Life-Skills sessions led by five Brass for Africa teachers.
Why are we doing it?
Bidibidi settlement is based on the border of South Sudan, where 95% of the refugees have fled due to the ongoing civil war. After going through the emotional trauma of fleeing their own country and living with the uncertainty of what will happen in their future, the residents of Bidibidi are low on morale and lack hope.
Within the settlement, 85% of the refugees are children and women. This is a crucial figure in our goal of equipping disadvantaged children and youth with the necessary skills to fulfil their potential. The statistic also syncs with the need of our objective and Gender Equality key pillar. Considering that more than 17,000 girls and women in the settlement have specific needs (i.e. serious medical conditions, disabilities, vulnerabilities), it clearly showcases the need for our support.
This mobile stage is providing both a physical and metaphoric platform for the refugees to showcase their talent and potential. It gives them the space and opportunity to gather, share, celebrate and learn.
How are we doing it?
Music and Life-Skills sessions will start in Zones 1 and 3 as of this week. The sessions will be focused on these two zones initially so as to ensure that our delivery and model is being done in the right way before expansion. During the launch week, the first instrument clinic took place in Zone 3, where the participants were able to try out the instrument of their choice with a Brass for Africa teacher. For many of the young individuals, it was their first ever time to hold an instrument at all.
The Lab will be accessible to every Zone for the refugees’ use of recording equipment, and the provision of a stage for their performances to showcase their talents, and for them to also be guided in their creative development.
The launch received incredibly positive feedback with a lot of excitement. Support on the ground-level was also highly demonstrated from the District Leaders and Representatives-
Charles, Leader of Zone 2, South Sudanese Refugee (2016):
“𝙄 𝙖𝙢 𝙫𝙚𝙧𝙮 𝙝𝙖𝙥𝙥𝙮 𝙨𝙚𝙚𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙩𝙝𝙞𝙨 𝙢𝙪𝙨𝙞𝙘𝙖𝙡 𝙥𝙧𝙤𝙟𝙚𝙘𝙩 𝙘𝙤𝙢𝙚 𝙞𝙣. 𝙒𝙚 𝙝𝙖𝙫𝙚 𝙮𝙤𝙪𝙩𝙝𝙨 𝙬𝙝𝙤 𝙝𝙖𝙫𝙚 𝙘𝙤𝙢𝙥𝙤𝙨𝙚𝙙 𝙨𝙤𝙣𝙜𝙨 𝙗𝙪𝙩 𝙩𝙝𝙚𝙮 𝙙𝙤𝙣’𝙩 𝙠𝙣𝙤𝙬 𝙬𝙝𝙚𝙧𝙚 𝙩𝙤 𝙜𝙤. 𝙏𝙝𝙚𝙮 𝙠𝙣𝙤𝙬 𝙞𝙩 𝙞𝙨 𝙥𝙧𝙤𝙙𝙪𝙘𝙚𝙙 𝙞𝙣 𝙖 𝙨𝙩𝙪𝙙𝙞𝙤, 𝙗𝙪𝙩 𝙮𝙤𝙪 𝙝𝙖𝙫𝙚 𝙩𝙤 𝙩𝙧𝙖𝙫𝙚𝙡 𝙛𝙖𝙧. 𝙎𝙞𝙣𝙘𝙚 𝙩𝙝𝙞𝙨 𝙥𝙧𝙤𝙜𝙧𝙖𝙢𝙢𝙚 𝙝𝙖𝙨 𝙘𝙤𝙢𝙚 𝙞𝙣, 𝙞𝙩 𝙬𝙞𝙡𝙡 𝙝𝙚𝙡𝙥 𝙩𝙝𝙚𝙢 𝙨𝙤 𝙢𝙪𝙘𝙝; 𝙢𝙪𝙨𝙞𝙘 𝙘𝙖𝙣 𝙗𝙧𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝙢𝙚𝙢𝙤𝙧𝙞𝙚𝙨 𝙗𝙖𝙘𝙠.”
Maria, Community Service Officer, Officer of the Prime Minister:
“𝘽𝙧𝙖𝙨𝙨 𝙛𝙤𝙧 𝘼𝙛𝙧𝙞𝙘𝙖 𝙖𝙨 𝙖𝙣 𝙤𝙧𝙜𝙖𝙣𝙞𝙨𝙖𝙩𝙞𝙤𝙣 𝙬𝙞𝙡𝙡 𝙗𝙚 𝙜𝙤𝙤𝙙 𝙛𝙤𝙧 𝙪𝙨 𝙬𝙞𝙩𝙝𝙞𝙣 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙘𝙤𝙢𝙢𝙪𝙣𝙞𝙩𝙮 𝙗𝙚𝙘𝙖𝙪𝙨𝙚 𝙞𝙩 𝙜𝙞𝙫𝙚𝙨 𝙖 𝙫𝙤𝙞𝙘𝙚 𝙩𝙤 𝙩𝙝𝙤𝙨𝙚 𝙬𝙝𝙤 𝙝𝙖𝙫𝙚 𝙣𝙤𝙩 𝙗𝙚𝙚𝙣 𝙖𝙗𝙡𝙚 𝙩𝙤 𝙨𝙥𝙚𝙖𝙠 𝙪𝙥. 𝙏𝙝𝙚 𝙇𝙖𝙗 𝙘𝙖𝙣 𝙗𝙚 𝙪𝙨𝙚𝙙 𝙖𝙨 𝙖 𝙥𝙡𝙖𝙩𝙛𝙤𝙧𝙢 𝙩𝙤 𝙨𝙝𝙖𝙧𝙚 𝙩𝙝𝙚𝙞𝙧 𝙞𝙣𝙛𝙤𝙧𝙢𝙖𝙩𝙞𝙤𝙣 𝙩𝙤 𝙖𝙡𝙡 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙥𝙖𝙧𝙩𝙣𝙚𝙧𝙨 𝙬𝙞𝙩𝙝𝙞𝙣 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙨𝙚𝙩𝙩𝙡𝙚𝙢𝙚𝙣𝙩 𝙖𝙣𝙙 𝙩𝙤 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙬𝙤𝙧𝙡𝙙 𝙗𝙚𝙮𝙤𝙣𝙙. 𝙄𝙣 𝘽𝙞𝙙𝙞𝘽𝙞𝙙𝙞 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙢𝙖𝙟𝙤𝙧𝙞𝙩𝙮 𝙤𝙛 𝙧𝙚𝙛𝙪𝙜𝙚𝙚𝙨 𝙖𝙧𝙚 𝙮𝙤𝙪𝙩𝙝𝙨, 𝙨𝙤 𝘽𝙧𝙖𝙨𝙨 𝙛𝙤𝙧 𝘼𝙛𝙧𝙞𝙘𝙖 𝙬𝙞𝙡𝙡 𝙝𝙚𝙡𝙥 𝙩𝙝𝙚𝙢 𝙩𝙤 𝙗𝙚 𝙧𝙚𝙘𝙤𝙜𝙣𝙞𝙨𝙚𝙙 𝙛𝙤𝙧 𝙩𝙝𝙚𝙞𝙧 𝙫𝙖𝙧𝙞𝙤𝙪𝙨 𝙩𝙖𝙡𝙚𝙣𝙩𝙨.”