GRACE KAMUNDA

Grace was born the fourth of eight children.  She was a member of the track and field team, where she participated in distance running and high jump.  However, she quickly took on a caretaker’s role, because her mother grew ill.  In order to care for her siblings, Grace had to drop out of school and sports.  Today, Grace is the single mother of five children.  They have a small farm, but it does not yield much, so to pay for school, Grace is slowly selling her family’s goats.

 

Grace enjoys spending time with her children, but she does not have much time to do so in her busy days.  She wakes up at 5:00am every morning, and immediately begins her chores.  She milks the goats, makes tea, and prepares her children for school all before 6:00.  She then walks her children to school and walks home, which is six kilometers round-trip.  When she gets home, she makes herself breakfast and begins working in the fields.  This work includes taking the goats to graze and pulling weeds.  Around 1:00pm, she takes a short break for lunch.  Next, she must go three kilometers to fetch water for the goats.  Because she enjoys running, she often runs the distance to the river and then walks back with the jugs.  Upon her return, she begins to prepare dinner and then heads back to the fields and farm.  When she gets back to the house, she checks on dinner and then runs to the river again for drinking water.  Her family, then, eats dinner and does their work.  For Grace’s children, this is their homework, and for Grace, it is making viondo.  They are able to work at night, because she has a solar light, which was given to her by MGS.

 

Viondo-making is a skill Grace learned from her aunt when she was a child.  She sells her products to Merry-Go-Strong and a few local people who are interested.  Grace told us that her life has changed drastically since selling her viondo.  Her profits go towards her children’s tuition and, then, to food.  With future sales, Grace wishes to continue to pay for tuition and buy a good home.  She also wants to set up a business to sell her viondo.  All in all, Grace said that her goal is just to have enough to support her family.

3562 Tally Ho Lane
Madison WI 53705
c/o Lesley Sager
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