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Rolling and Varnishing

January 2009

On Wednesday we continued with bead rolling and on Thursday began teaching them to varnish their beads. The women worked so hard this week and took in such a huge amount of information! It was incredible to watch their determination. Each morning they arrived just a little bit earlier than the day before – trying to come well before the training began at 9am so that they could begin rolling their beads. By Thursday, many of them had shown up by 7am and were coming to our door one by one to pick up their paper and needles. By end of day Thursday, they were competing with one another and had transformed 6kgs of paper into beautiful beads!

We are slowly getting to know one another, share stories, exchange laughter and begin our journey together. It is such an honour to share this path with them and be a part of their new sense of hope. They inspire me beyond words – their courage, playfulness and love for each other will carry them far on this journey!

Now the beads are hanging in the sister’s convent to dry. Everyone is beginning to talk about the women and their jewellery – and the women are turning the heaviness they brought in with them on the first day into a beautiful, proud light! They established a varnishing schedule this weekend and Julius and I have left for Kampala for one last paper purchase before the women learn to make their own purchases. This time we bought 9kgs and were able to go back to the women who had wanted so badly to sign our ‘receipt’ last time….for the first time EVER in Uganda, I received a discount….its seems we are regular paper customers now!

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