The “Job Description” for Project Leader is wide ranging. It begins pre trip moves onto during and extends into post African Adventure. Pre trip focuses on the planning for the trip – seeking and booking hotels liaising with the Country manager to agree the programme, motivating of both self and fellow volunteers to set the fund raising machine in motion, sorting jabs etc etc.

During the trip the focus shifts to the daily management of the programme, budgeting, regular visits to the banks to have the cash (no credit cards or cheques accepted here!) available to pay hotels, drivers and fuel costs. Importantly the role means meeting with the local cricket programme organisers to confirm the plans made with the Ugandan Cricket Association and CWB. The evening before the programme starts can be a very easy task – its written down, the schools involved know they are coming, the volunteers are primed ……………… and then the day of the first session arrives and Plan B, neatly stored away is dragged out kicking and screaming. One of the hazards of planning too far ahead in Africa but also one of the joys.

Project leads also are responsible for keeping a record of the days activity (in readiness for the End of Project report), recording numbers attending, schools taking part , teachers coached and ensuring that all those involved receive their certificates and T shirts in recognition of their achievements. CWB are also committed to the Monitoring and Evaluation of both the cricketing activity and the HIV/AIDS awareness work, the impact of the sessions – the “so what” factor – what difference are we making?

Importantly the project lead needs to keep one eye on how the rest of the group are both physically and mentally at a time when they are working long days in often challenging conditions.

Daily review sessions are held to get feedback from the group on the days activity – what went well, what can we do differently – and plans for the next day. All this and getting fully involved with the Coaching side – running sessions and supporting other volunteers.

None of this, of course, would be possible without the support of the whole group. The role of the media in promoting the work of CWB and the project is key through these blogs and the photos and video taken. Some will naturally fit into roles. The Uganda 2012 team is lucky to have the professional skills of Phil O’Brien to sell the CWB message while the Accountancy background of Ken Kirk ensures that the groups food and (very limited) bar bills are settled with minimum fuss. From a cricketing perspective Darren and Neil’ s enthusiasm fills the air while Martin and Ken’s knowledge and experience supports the coaching process. Claire – “I am only a mum” – is now a confident coach while utilising her dance skills to entertain the kids while waiting for the cricket fields to clear of footballers and/or cows. The is cricketing activity is expertly knitted together by Richard Davies while his in depth local knowledge of Uganda, its people and their culture is invaluable to a first time project leader and the team as a whole.

Any group needs its support. The stoic driving skills of Joseph gets us from A to B in remarkable fashion and always with a smile. Although Yusuf is of few words when he does we listen to his quiet assurance as one who knows his country and its people.

As a race we live and work in a multitude of groups and when we are thrown together no one can confidently predict how it will work. The Uganda Spring 2012 is proof that it is only as good as the sum of its parts.

By the very nature of volunteering people choose to be involved. This serves to change the whole nature of the relationship but this group has grabbed the bull by the horns and Uganda 2012 evidences the growth of individuals both on a professional and personal leveL.



BELOW IS A SELECTION OF PICTURES OF THE TEAM’S DAY OFF IN THE QUEEN ELIZABETH NATIONAL PARK (and a photo of us swimming in the rain – well it was the only time we’ve had a chance to use a pool on the trip!)