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A taste of Uganda at Pestalozzi

Ugandan students answer audience questions
Photo: Pestalozzi's Ugandan students answered questions from the audience. (Photo by Mags Alexander.)

Sandra performs a traditional dance
Photo: Sandra (pictured) and Rachel performed a high-energy traditional Ugandan dance to open the evening. (Photo by Mags Alexander.)

Ugandan dolls
Photo: Ugandan dolls and artifacts were on display during the event. (Photo by Jonathan Williams.)

24 February 2014

Uganda is known as ‘the pearl of Africa’, and it was most certainly a pearl of an evening at Pestalozzi’s Ugandan Cultural Evening last Thursday. Anthony Musker, PR student at the University of Brighton, reports.

An all-ages audience was treated to a host of different activities and performances by Pestalozzi’s four Ugandan students, Timothy Ogolla, Rachel Nanteza, Sandra Batakana and Habiiba Malingha. Students performed high-energy traditional dances from the Buganda kingdom (watch the video!), a contemporary poem, a Ugandan fashion show, and an enlightening presentation giving an insight to life in this unique East African country.

The entertainment was briefly interrupted for the serving of some delicious Ugandan food. Guests tucked in to delightful, traditional beef and vegetarian stews, while there was also the option to try the banana-based dish matoke.

For those in the audience who were newcomers Pestalozzi’s absorbing events, it was a refreshing experience, thoroughly enjoyed. "The food was absolutely lovely, so different, particularly the banana dish,” said one of the guests. "The enthusiasm of the students is brilliant. It was a great evening with a nice atmosphere. We had great fun.”

Pestalozzi International Village Trust is a UK-based charity which strives to make a difference to the lives of disadvantaged people from around the world, offering academically gifted students an opportunity to put their talents to productive use. Scholarships given by Pestalozzi have a long-term effect on communities as many students return to make a difference to the lives of others.

Rachel, who is in her second and final year at Pestalozzi spoke passionately during the evening, saying, "I want to give back to my community. I would like to become a surgeon in the future as there are not many where I come from. It is a great opportunity, I want to mentor others and help them realise their potential. I am so fortunate to have this chance.”

Pestalozzi’s chief executive, Susan Walton, described the night as a success. "It has been a good turnout with lots of new faces here, and the students did a fantastic job,” she said. "We want to spread Pestalozzi’s message of international understanding and educating the head, heart and hands. What better way of doing that than through wonderful cultural events like this?”

For those wishing to attend one of Pestalozzi’s inspirational cultural events, our International Celebration will be taking place on Saturday 8 March, 12-3pm. Hope to see you there!