Overwhelming interest in Memory Book workshop in Rukungiri District On 29 Jan, 2014 By Carol Lindsay Smith With Comments Off Maureen Mugisha runs Mindset in Entebbe – a busy training project for young women- and she really deserved to have a rest in her Christmas holidays. But instead, on 24th December, Maureen decided to run a Memory Book workshop in her home village. 80 people came along to the Kyaruhotora Pentecostal Church in Burora Nyarushanje in South Western Uganda. Maureen explained the Memory Book ideas and showed part of the “Memory Books” film. This shows parents talking openly to their children and working together on making their Memory Books. Members of the group then had a chance to try writing pages for their own family Memory Books – and there was something very special about doing this work. The words of the Memory Book had just been translated into the local language Runyankole. This meant that workshop members were able to read and work on the ideas in their mother tongue. The translation into Runyankole was done by Hubert Agumya from nearby Rwashamaire, Ntungamo District. He travelled 45 miles with his wife on Christmas Eve to help Maureen explain the ideas and encourage people to get going on their Memory Books in their mother tongue. You can find Hubert’s contact details at end of this report. Because the first workshop was so successful, Maureen gave up more of her holiday to hold a second workshop at the same church on 30th December. Obviously news about the Runyankole Memory Book and the film had travelled fast and this time the group included parishioners from Kyaruhotora Church of Uganda, Ihunga Catholic Church, Kabashuri Church of Uganda and many other people from Kakenena and Kasan. The church was overflowing with an audience of more than 400 – some of them standing outside and looking in through windows! Maureen was helped to work with this huge crowd by Hilda Mwesingye, a friend from TASO Rukungiri, and Pastors Eunice and Lovince Twesigye from one of the participating churches. Another wonderful addition to the event was that local people contributed refreshments to the visitors who were around for most of the day. It would be impossible to explain everything that happened at these wonderful events. But Maureen has told us that the following ideas and questions came up from many people: How can we get help to keep the Memory Book ideas going? What age should we start writing memory book? When is right time to talk to our children? Can we declare our inheritance and distribute to our children when we are still alive? Many other questions about how to be “open” about family matters and how to make sure that plans that parents make for their children are carried out correctly. Understanding legal rights and responsibilities was very important for many workshop members. Final words from Maureen Mugisha. She said her most important memory of the day was the overwhelming turn up and the interest people showed in the ideas – which were easier to understand because of the Memory Books film and having the words in Runyankole, the language of people in Maureen’s home area.. Maureen said: “I will never forget the best gift I took to the village with me and I am forever grateful to Carol for interesting me in the Memory Book. I had already started writing mine and was so much encouraged by my son Andrew Muhimbise . The news spread like fire and it is good that Hubert is willing to keep going back to my village to give a helping hand. We shall find ways to keep helping to preach the good news of the Memory Book.” If you are interested in setting up a Memory Book workshop in the Western or Central region please contact Maureen Mugisha at PO.Box 74 Entebbe. Or by email: msdorg05∂yahoo.com. Or Hubert Agumya at P.O.Box 77, Rwashamaire, Ntungamo district. Or by email: aghubat∂gmail.com This film reports on the work of a training and evelopment organisation – Mindset, founded and run by Maureen Mugisha. They teach young women and young mothers skills to be seamstress and cooks. Confidence building, communication skills and businesses are also nutured in her students so that they leave their courses highly employable candidates with bright economic futures.