We are happy to introduce ourselves to you!
As a tribute to my deceased wife, I have taken the initiative to establish the Astrid Uganda Foundation.
Astrid and I have spent years travelling across the world, but wherever we went, we always had the desire to return to Africa. In June 2008 we went to Uganda, where we had a fantastic time and vacation, which unfortunately ended fatally. Although this is extremely sad, my feelings towards Africa have not been affected.
Do more for Africa
Each time Astrid and I went to Africa we tried, like many travelers, to bring things such as pens, balloons and clothing, with us. Each time however, we got the feeling that this was not enough, and that we could do more, perhaps in Africa itself.
In daily life I work in the ICT sector.
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Getting busy out of love for Uganda
My name is Will Geerts and I will gladly set to work as a Member of the Board to accomplish great results with the Astrid Uganda Foundation.
My love for Uganda came about during two visits to the country. In 2006 I visited a friend there who was doing voluntary work for an organization involving prisons and schools (COA). That visit made quite an impression on me. I was in Kampala, right at the centre of the Bwyogerere district, and visited the detention centre for young people. I spoke to both prisoners and guards about the situation there and the way they were organized. So I not only saw Uganda from the outside as a tourist, but actually mingled with the people.
In 2010 my employer sent me on a mission for the Red Cross in Uganda. In Hoima we established an internet coffee shop and the organization around it. We also created a blueprint for the Red Cross to set up other new internet centres themselves. It was a good example of how the Ugandan people can accomplish beautiful results themselves with a little bit of support. During that mission I could also visit the projects of the Astrid Uganda Foundation at Masindi.
The strength and the positive spirit despite the problems and the poverty, have stuck in my memory. The kindness and politeness of the people, the warmth they show. I became familiar with the culture and the way of communication. I think that it will help to achieve results.
My work experience is in management and ICT, particularly project and financial management. This business component can prove to be a good input for our projects. It is an inspirational challenge for me to help the people in Uganda with matters that can make a difference and can actually be of use. Uganda is very dear to me. I think it is great that I can make a contribution with my passion and professionalism.
My name is Henny van Silfhout and since October last I have been the secretary of the Astrid Uganda Foundation.
How did I end up here? It was a chance concurrence of circumstances. The foundation of which I was a member of the board before this, was wrapping up its activities and Jaap had put the request for a new secretary on LinkedIn. After a pleasant meeting with Jaap during which we could immediately share experiences, it was settled.
First, some information about myself. I have been an entrepreneur for almost five years. Together with my business associate I run the company KOI Group B.V. We are a small IT secondment company that focuses on testing and functional management in the course of which the development of people is very important (both co-workers, customers and people in Uganda).
I have been involved in non-profit organizations for many years, ranging from sports club to church administration. These past few years I have become personally interested in projects in Africa and in Uganda in particular. As KOI we also want to take our corporate social responsibility. Within this scope I became involved in the Africa Society three years ago. This foundation dedicates itself to a group of orphans in the Kumi district in Uganda. Through various projects that generate money we take care of food, clothing and especially education for these children.
In addition to this three students have been granted a scholarship. A trip to Uganda in 2011 made me absolutely enthusiastic about this country and the possibilities it holds. As the projects can now stand on their own legs, we are cutting back on the activities of this foundation.
So, it is time for a new challenge at the Astrid Uganda Foundation!