2017 TGC Team Dedication Project!

Starting in 2017, The Giving Circle’s annual summer trip team will work together to raise the funds to construct one very important project.  That project will be dedicated to that team, during the trip, to The Giving Circles Ugandan projects memorialized on a plaque.

This year’s team project is: The Giving Circle Africa’s Kagoma Gate School & Medical Clinic Compound Security Fence!

During the team trip this summer, the team will help construct this very important compound fence.   Once completed, a plaque dedicated to the team of 2017, will be mounted to the main gate entrance. We will have a naming ceremony, forever remembering the Giving Circle team of 2017.

Kagoma Gate, located at the edge of a large sugarcane plantation, is Uganda’s poorest village, often referred to as the “the forgetting village”.

In 2012, at the request of the Ugandan Government, The Giving Circle entered the village to build a 3-room school; to be the village’s first school.  Since that time, The Giving Circle has made Kagoma Gate one of its core villages, forever changing one of the world’s poorest villages.

This was accomplished by building and operating the village’s first:

  • Full primary school complex with a student body of 500 students,
  • School buildings also serving as the village church and meeting halls,
  • Village playground,
  • Village’s first medical clinic,
  • Village’s first sanitation through pit latrine buildings,
  • Kitchen building, feeding each child 2 meals every school day, and
  • The village’s only source of electric light is through solar system located on our school buildings and clinic, and water through a borehole well and new rainwater harvesting system.
It’s common for schools in Uganda to be surrounded and by protected by a compound fence. In Kagoma Gate this to protect the children, buildings, property and school’s livestock and its only water source.  Gathering water from the well at night in the dark can be dangerous. This fence and new solar light will help to assure villager safety.

The total cost of all materials and labor for this important fence and main gate is $3860 USD. Its value to the village is priceless.  100% of your donation will be used directly on this project.

Thank you for your consideration.  For additional information please contact:  Mark Bertrand

CLICK HERE TO DONATE if you are friends with someone who is traveling with us this year!

** NOTE: you may print this form out and send a check payable to The Giving Circle and mail to PO Box 3162, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866  (if you do not want to use PayPal).



To warm your heart….

Our deaf and disabled children playing with our hearing children at our Uganda Busoga School….

As Moses wrote, “all kids deserve equal opportunity!” – well said Moses – YES!



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Cassava cuttings…

Given the drought in Uganda, we have planted Cassava which does better in those conditions!

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Team Aquaponics in Uganda!

A HUGE THANK YOU and Congratulations to the Washington State University Tri-Cities Electrical Engineering Team Aquaponics and Professor Scott Hudson. Their project “Solar Aquaponics System for Kagoma Gate Village” received 1st place, yes, you read that correctly:  FIRST PLACE at the IEEE Undergraduate Presentation Competition Wednesday (4/12/17) at the University of Idaho.

We are overjoyed that our long time supporter of The Giving Circle and friend, Scott will be part of this years team going to Uganda with us!  During the trip, Scott will install this amazing project and, in addition,  his students designed and he will be,  bringing solar light to the newly completed 2 class room school block at Kagoma Gate.

Scott will have helpers from the US and our Ugandan team/family, and of course,  our team Engineer Emma Walubi.

These projects are both game and life changers for both our Kagoma Gate & Busoga schools and village!

Hunger and food instability is a constant worry compounded by the current drought and future ones to come. This form of farming can help greatly in changing this.

Amazing work!



Amazing Amazon Smile TGC Opportunity!

Great news. We have an upcoming 1-day opportunity to drive additional AmazonSmile donations for The Giving Circle Inc.

Amazon is celebrating its #1 ranking in customer satisfaction by the ACSI! Today, March 16, Amazon will donate 5% (10 times the usual donation rate) of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases to The Giving Circle Inc. Get started at smile.amazon.com/ch/41-2196304!



TGCA Team Coming Home!

Today is always a hard day, its the day we leave. Its been an amazing trip, with amazing team, Ann Lamoreaux Fantauzzi, Bill Reilly , Lourds Lane and Dr Manny Cirenza to spend almost 3 weeks with our amazing African based Giving Circle team/family Moses Wambi Emma Walubi Cecilia Kagya, Mwesigwa Paul Kisitu Yassin Elizabeth, Sangrao, Peter, all our teachers and staff and all of the Ugandan family we thanks to so many of you, we serve.

The advances we are making, the lives we are improving, bringing all the things that bring such great hope to beautiful people.

EVERY single thing we do, everything we accomplish is 100% because of all of you who help us make this happen.

We are at the Koi Koi House with our sons and daughters right now, but Its time to head to the airport for 2 very long flights. While we can dust off some of the red dust from our clothing and shoes you can never shake from your heart our Ugandan family.

As always a HUGE thank you to Moses and Cecilia for always having my bedroom ready at my home away from home at their home. My time with them and their children is pure love.

Next stop Entebbe, then Amsterdam then on to Boston then home to my love Kelly Mommakoikoi Bertrand!


Updates and enjoyment in Uganda!

Some enjoyment….



The trip is winding down, just a few days left until the team leaves Uganda, our projects and our beloved Ugandan family.
Today was back to Kagoma Gate, though we VERY missed Ann who was a bit under the weather so stayed back for some rest and Dr Manny Cirenza was spending the day at the AOET clinic.

Part 1- Continuing construction on the last of the class blocks, this the 2 class room great hall that with GREAT thanks to Fingerpaint Marketing we can now complete.

Wall cement coatings being applied. The window frames and doors have been completed at the welders and will be delivered to Kagoma to start being installed Friday.

Thank you Bo Signoracci Goliber!!

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Deaf student hearing tests and more…

Today will be spent at our Busoga school with Lourds teaching the students then staff. Dr Manny and Ann screening our deaf classes/ students.  Bill will also for the last day this trip be doing what he does so very well, teaching, inspiring!

Later today MosesKisitu Yassin and I will head out to the Entebbe airport with Bill for his flight home and back to school at Bethlehem Middle School.

I and the whole team here greatly so including the teaching staffs at both our schools are so very grateful for this amazing most kind and loving man. His dedication to the work we do, to the children we serve and children everywhere and their education is astounding.

Bill Reilly my brother thank you for all you do and all you did on this trip, you are loved by so many. Your heart is of solid gold, dancing a bit off but heart pure GOLD. Click here!

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We have the most amazing news!  We have started the hearing clinic with our deaf children at Busoga School. We set a goal a hope, a prayer we could get just ONE that has some hearing, with this we could seek out hearing aids.
We set this goal knowing chances would not be great, but we may just have one.

The very first child is brought to us Sserungo Hussien, and he heard!!!  Stay tuned!



More, more, more…

What a great day yesterday. We were always moving in a direction south towards Entebbe airport to pick up Lourds for her arrival at 10:30pm and she is here and safe and sound AND VERY excited.

1-Mark’s day started, as always, at Moses and Cecilia home, with Moses and Mark in their long talks over tea and breakfast . We were visited by Kawanga Paul, a young man who has been in our sponsorship program since he was very small. He came to report he has scored so well in his high school national exams and can and will move to university with a goal of being a lawyer, our first lawyer!
2- Next to Mukono with AnnBill and the team where 5 of our oldest Koi Koi kids attend high school (beaming with love and pride).  We visited our children to find them looking so good, happy and working so hard with very good grades.
3- Next stop;  Kampala to meet with our great friend and star(s) of the Disney Movie, The Queen of Katwe,  Robert Katende and Phiona Mutesi!
4- Last stop: Entebbe Airport to pick up our new family member  and the amazing  Lourds Lane!

Tonight back to Entebbe airport to pick up Manny Cirenza!

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