Our Story

A growing place creating unlimited futures

When I was growing up in my village in northern Uganda, the greeting as people went about their day to day business was, “Lutino tye ningning?” …”How are the children?”  In those days, the answer was usually “Gitye maber”.. “They are well.” Today the answer to “Lutino tye ninging?” is mostly “Not well.”

In 1977, my husband, my two children and I fled from the regime of dictator Idi Amin to Kenya. Colorado’s Episcopal Bishop William Frye sponsored us to Denver in 1978/79. We are now retired educators who cannot look away from the plight of so many children and the waste of human potential. Many school age children are dropping out of upper primary and secondary schools all across this war-scarred region. They said the war has ended, but the people are continuing to battle the consequences, especially the innocent children.

When I shared my heart felt vision of starting a “help to life” approach to education in Gulu, Uganda my hometown, my Montessori colleague and her husband immediately came on board. Together, we purchased a small plot of land in Lacan Kwitte village near Gulu. Lacan Kwitte means "I'm a poor man still struggling to live...not dead yet!"

We now have a board of directors in Gulu, Uganda, and a planning committee in the Denver, Colorado, United States. Our plan is to create a unique, hands-on learning Montessori environment on our land in Lacan Kwitte. We have begun a community garden. Our first crop of sweet potatoes, a staple in Uganda, is being harvested as I write. Our next steps will be the creation a Montessori outdoor learning space with an enlarged community garden, a chicken coop and a playground.  We hope to build a structure on site soon as well. 

 

Todd Oldham creator of "Kid Made Modern", is providing art supplies...the first crayon or colored artist pencil that these children will have ever touched and held … and creative support for the first playground that these children have ever seen.

 

WE NEED YOUR HELP. Please join our band of caring people who are committed to supporting the limitless, transformative possibilities in young children.

 

Thank you for enhancing the nourishment, growth and healing of the life force in every child we serve.


Sincerely, Marcellina Otii

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