Bristol residents travel to Uganda to visit sponsored child

Bristol residents travel to Uganda to visit sponsored child

Bristol residents Judith and Keith Sheather have just returned from Uganda where they met Diana, the child they have been sponsoring for almost 9 years through child development charity, Compassion UK.


The couple from Stoke Bishop travelled to Uganda on a gorilla tracking safari trip and while in the region seized the opportunity to meet 15-year-old Diana.

“Diana travelled to us with her project worker and it was very emotional but also felt surprisingly normal – after years of writing to each other it was like meeting a family member. We sat together on the veranda of our hotel over-looking Bwindi Impenetrable Forest and exchanged gifts and photos. I brought Happy Families and she quickly picked up the game, we laughed and chatted together, she was like any other teenager,” shares Judith, a retired teacher.

Diana lives in the South West corner of Uganda bordering the Congo and Rwanda, on the plains of Kisoro Community. Typically houses are constructed of dirt floors, adobe walls and corrugated iron roofs. Common health problems in this area include malaria and HIV/AIDS. Most adults are unemployed but some work as farmers and earn the equivalent of £3 per month.            

“We didn’t get to visit Diana’s home but she showed us photos and told us about her life in more detail. It was not as rural as I imagined. Sadly her father had died about 10 years ago building the house, so it remains unfinished,” explains Judith.

In most parts of Uganda, education is encouraged and viewed as important, indicated by the government making the first two years of secondary education free. However, large classes of up to 75 children are common along with a lack of teaching resources and equipment for the classrooms, leading to a poor quality of schooling.

The Sheather’s sponsorship enables Diana to be part of her local Compassion project where she receives nutritious meals, emotional support, medical attention and the chance to get a good quality education.

“Diana’s visit gave us all real delight. It is a privilege to have been able to help her and her family. The project has given her a hope for the future, she has been able to stay at school and take her O Levels, her dream is to become a doctor one day,” shares Judith.

Becca Stanley

Words by Becca Stanley


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Compassion UK Christian Child Development, registered charity in England and Wales (1077216) and Scotland (SC045059). A company limited by guarantee, Registered in England and Wales company number 03719092. Registered address: Compassion House, Barley Way, Fleet, Hampshire, GU51 2UT.