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History of the
Rock of Joy Trust
During August 2007, 33 members of Heswall Church Youth Fellowship visited Masaka School in southern Uganda to learn about the developing world and to run holiday clubs, and serve the community. We met Fred Ssendi who is the inspirational director of the school. The school is in a remote rural setting where HIV was first identified. The population are poor with little education, and a large number of HIV/AIDs orphans. There was no clean water supply, no electricity, teachers were on half the recommended wage and the children would go all day without any food.
When we returned to England, we were so moved by the need we had seen and by the fact that relatively little money makes a massive impact. We therefore applied to the Charity Commission for recognition of The Rock of Joy Trust as a charity.
Since then we have slowly expanded to run three schools. In addition to Masaka we have a second school called Lady Grace which is 5 miles away. This was established as children as young as 5 were walking to Masaka everyday. Our third school is in the slums of Kampala and is called Rock of Joy Antioch.
We have established a pattern where large youth groups go out every two years and an adult trip visits on the alternate years. We started with introducing clean water supplies and a daily meal for children who normally had no food until the evening. We moved Masaka to a large plot nearby and that has now been completely built with new brick school rooms, assembly hall and an orphanage for 120 vulnerable children.
Antioch school was adopted 2 years later but the site was too small and it was not until 2013 that a large enough site became available. This is now being developed. Another two new classroom blocks are needed and we are establishing a poultry project on the site in order to enable them to raise funds which eventually will allow them to be self sufficient.
Lady Grace is still in wooden buildings which get eaten by termites.We hope to raise enough funds to start on their first brick classrooms later in 2016.
We currently fund all the teachers, feed the children and provide teaching materials. However at Masaka we now have a 50 acre farm which covers 60% of their running costs. We aim to have all the school buildings complete and self sufficiency established by 2020.
Old New Old New Current
Masaka Masaka Antioch Antioch Lady Grace