Edirisa UK was founded in 2005 by Sheila Windridge, who still heads up the charity, and is supported by a group of trustees. Sheila and her trustees are volunteers, ensuring that all funds generated go straight to the projects in Uganda.
What's In a Name?
Edirisa means a window in the local Rukiga language.
A window for the world to see Africa and for Africa to see the World
Edirisa grew out of a student club born on 1 February 2001 at Uganda Martyrs University. Edirisa Uganda's founders were two Masters students of development issues: Miha Logar, a Slovenian journalist, and Ambrose Kibuuka, a Ugandan educator. They asserted that no progress can be achieved without cultural self-respect, without understanding the peoples' roots and without appreciation for Uganda and Africa. If people do not believe in what they have and what they can do, there can be no meaningful development. Edirisa Uganda continues to exist as a Ugandan social enterprise focused on cultural self-respect.
In 2005, with a desire to help the community around Lake Bunyonyi, Edirisa UK was founded. Since then we have grown to encompass diverse community development initiatives spanning education, clean water, health care and ethnic crafts.
A third branch, Edirisa Slovenia, (no longer operating) sponsored Primary School children and was the driving force behind the Libraries initiative.
Who We Are
Sheila, the founder of Edirisa UK, was born in England but grew up in Zimbabwe. Africa has always had a special place in her heart. When, in 2004, she came across a school on Lake Bunyonyi being supported by Edirisa Uganda she wanted to get involved. Since setting up the charity in 2005 Edirisa UK has grown and grown.
Sheila is supported by a group of trustees from a range of professional backgrounds including legal, financial, project management and marketing.
Our heart still lies on the shores of Lake Bunyonyi in Uganda's Kabale district, where we started as an education focused community organisation.
Bunyonyi means the place of many birds and the lake is a haven for wildlife and a popular bird-watching spot for the Crested Crane - Uganda's national bird.
The lake is bordered by verdant, terraced hills and dotted with 29 islands. It is a magical place with stunning scenery, a temperate climate and warm, welcoming people.
If it's not on your bucket list, it should be.