We met Alice on our first day in Kisoro, Uganda where we went to record the music and dance of the Batwa. Alice spent three days with us, helping with interviews and translations and recording the meanings of the songs. We were delighted to be able to record the music of her own community, Gatera.
Alice is unique within the Batwa community in Uganda as she is the first (and, to date, only) Batwa who has been to university. Her education started in 1993 at Gitovu Primary school but after Year 3 she had to leave as her parents were unable to pay the fees. The Adventist Development Relief Agency (ADRA), an NGO supporting the Batwa, decided to sponsor a group of Batwa children to study at Mabuyemeru School. Alice was chosen as one of those children. ADRA then continued to sponsor her through her first year at secondary school. Another NGO, the Bwindi and Mgahinga Impenetrable Forest Conservation Trust, then supported Alice to the end of Senior 4. During her A Level studies she was supported initially by UOBDU and then ADRA once again. Finally, Alice attended Bugema University near Kampala where she gained her diploma in Development Studies and became the first university graduate from the Batwa community. She has been working for UOBDU as their Tourism Officer since January 2011, is married and has a beautiful daughter, Precious, who accompanied us on every day of the Singing Wells project in Kisoro.