I've just started a little project in aid of a couple of charities. I've offered to write a sonnet a month to raise money for Water Aid and the Friends of Margaret School, Uganda. The first one has been done as you can see.
I'm proposing to write a sonnet a month from Jan to December. Well, I know I'm a bit late - but the January one is completed in first draft form and you can see it below.
If you'd like to support these two charities, please sponsor me per sonnet. Anything from 50p per sonnet will be most welcome! I'll update you on a quarterly basis but you won't have to pay up till December.
Just reply to this email and say OK, together with the amount per sonnet. (Longer expressions of support are welcome but not essential...)
Water Aid is a fairly well known charity. Its mission is to "overcome poverty by enabling the world's poorest people to gain access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene education."
The Friends of the Margaret Junior School charity is tiny by comparison:
Margaret Junior School is situated in the small parish of Kasanje in Masaka District, Uganda, and was started in 2004 by Kasujja Sarah, a retired Deputy Head-teacher. It was as the result of her son, Mutebi Daniel (Danny), receiving sponsorship to read law at Kampala International University, from Margaret West of Shrewsbury.
Margaret was in Uganda in 2003 visiting Roger and Wendy Ford, friends of hers who were doing VSO. Danny, who is physically disabled, was studying at Masaka Vocational Rehabilitation Centre, where Wendy was teaching. Danny had a passion to read law and Margaret, who was impressed by his attitude and hard work, offered to fund his course to make his ambition become a reality. Sarah, so impressed by this generosity thought "What can I do? I can't afford to put my son through University, but I can teach…………."
With her family's support she built a class-room onto the side of her house and expected to enrol about 30 children. Within a week of opening she had 90 pupils. Four years later the school has over 190 pupils, 123 of whom are orphans (mostly HIV & AIDS related) and 18 physically disabled.
Margaret Junior School needs ongoing support and The Friends of the Margaret Junior School was established in 2006 to work with the local School Committee in Uganda to plan for the future education of the village children. The local community is doing what it can but most people are subsistence farmers and there is little spare cash for luxuries - like education.
Since being established two years ago The Friends of Margaret Junior School have been successful in :
Buying the land on which the school is sited
Building pit latrines
Bringing piped water to the school and village
Building a new 4 class-room block
Establishing a Pupil Sponsorship scheme.
In the next couple of years "The Friends" intend to build a further class-room block so that all students can be properly housed as the school grows and the parents themselves have started work on building accommodation for teachers so that the school committee can continue to recruit good quality staff.
Even if you don't like sonnets, please sign up and encourage me!
PS If you want your own, personal, sonnet - you can. But it'll cost you £25 sponsorship.
You can state the topic, dedicate it to a friend...whatever.