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Teachers: Citizenship: Globalisation Social

Last Updated: Monday January 31 2005 10:38 GMT

Worksheet: Nilumansi's story

Nilumansi, 9, from Uganda. (Photo: Sam Faulkner, NB Pictures)
Hi, I'm Nilumansi! I'm 9, and I live in Kamwoyka, a district of Kampala, the capital city of Uganda.

Kampala is an exciting place, but as I live in the outskirts I don't often get the chance to go and see the busy shops, the theatre or the grand parliament buildings.

Both my parents are dead now - they died of AIDS, an illness that kills so many people in my country. After they died, all of us children had to go to live with different relatives.

Nobody could afford to look after all eleven of us together. This means we don't get to see each other very often and that sometimes makes me sad.

I came to live with my gran and three cousins. We only have a small house and we all have to share the same bedroom with gran. My uncle sleeps in the living room.

My gran is really nice, but she tells me off when I've made a mistake or broken something and I don't like that. My cousins are all older than me and they try to boss me around too.

My gran can only afford to send one of us to school, so my cousin Joanne goes. Maybe that's why Joanne thinks she can tell me what to do!

We had to move when the road was widened and our house was pulled down. My gran got some compensation money, which helped for a bit, but now it's nearly all gone.

My gran makes pancakes and sells them to local shops. I wish she could earn more - then I could go to school too.

I have to do lots of jobs in the house - I sweep the compound and the pit latrine (an outside toilet that doesn't use water). I also help with the washing up and look after the three chickens. I like to finish the jobs quickly so I can go and play with my friends.

We've got a TV and a radio that used to belong to my parents. We don't have electricity here so the TV's not much use to us now! But I can remember watching the Teletubbies when I was little - when Mum was still alive. We do listen to the radio though - I love pop music best!

I wish I could go to proper school but there just isn't the money to pay for the books, pens and other things I would need. So for now I go to part-time classes run by Kamwoyka Christian Caring Community (KCCC) for kids like me who can't afford proper school.

On the days I go I get lunch there too. I go with my best friend Betty whose parents also died of AIDS. We learn reading, writing and numbers.

The classes are better than nothing - but I want to be a teacher and for that I need to pass exams. And I can't do that unless I go to proper school.

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