On our road to Karamoja, the Land Cruiser is stuffed with bags, medicines, food, throws, cloths. 500 kilometres, an 11 hour drive.
It’s in the middle of the night, I can smell Africa, sweet and intense.
The passport and fifty dollars in my hand, it’s three o’clock in the morning. A smiling humming employee is there for my visa. Welcome in Uganda!
In Kampala the traffic is frenetic, many are the voices, at any hour of the day. The city is never sleeping. I wake up during the night, the dogs are barking, the people are speaking, it might be four o’clock in the morning. I can feel the life.
On our road to Karamoja, the Land Cruiser is stuffed with bags, medicines, food, throws, cloths. 500 kilometres, an 11 hour drive: it’s our turn. On the street people walk barefoot, calm and patient, children in school uniforms, mummies carrying their children on their back, women with water canisters on their head. They are our mates during the whole trip.
I fell asleep. It’s the last kilometres on asphalt. There, the beginning of the end! The car gives a huge shake, the marra, the red African soil, is under our wheels. Fred - the driver - is tireless. The car goes on shaking, lots of red dust on our faces through the open windows, the sun is hot, the noise deafening and there is lots and lots to see.
At our arrival my head is bumping, my legs shaking. We did it: we arrived to Karamoja, the land of the warriors.
It’s early in the morning. Life is calling, intense and filled. We leave for Kotido hospital. In the court we dive into a sea of colors. They might be hundreds, women and children wrapped into colored fabrics! Deep eyes look at us curiously. The feed are bare, the babies loud, the voices shy and soft, the smell deep and intense. My knees are shaking. They are all here for the vaccination of the newborn, some corn wheat and palm oil in return.
The last day in Karamoja. With Alessandro we are entering the Musas Valley. A small narrow path. Corn plants as high as over my head. Here in the jungle I would go on for hours. I can feel it, the essence of life. We are all wheat, the air is humid and hot, the rhythm fast. Silence and nature, it’s only the two of us. We want to go up high.
And we reach our goal. They are there waiting for us in their village on 2.000 meters above see level: the Tepez, the Karimojong of the mountain. Machete in their hands, bare feet, deep eyes, a breathtaking view, the wild nature. The Tepez grow corn for their surviving, water is not missing at these heights. I would like to stop time. I feel a little Tepez myself, as in the end we Ladins are somehow a mountain “tribe” too.
When one is good at so many different things it is likely that one will be involved in organizing, arranging, planning and more. That's the case of Nicolò. For our foundation he is in in charge of fund raising events: if there is a meeting, an evening or a dinner to organize as it should be, he knows how.
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Lobsang Tsomo is project manager at the Tibetan Children’s Village in India. She is Tibetan, escaped from his oppressed homeland looking for freedom of expression and life. Thanks to her, the distance between here and the Tibetan people exiled in India, is less huge and richer on possibilities.
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Francesco De Pasquale
Francesco is development director at ISP in Karamoja and he is our person in place to follow the school projects with accuracy and great commitment. His joie de vivre and passion for what he does, is contagious even through email.
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Elide is responsible for the Costa Family Foundation o.n.l.u.s. since 2011. She is silent, her eyes are sprightly, her attitude sweet. But don’t get fooled: she is very determined and admonishes us when the work is not properly done. Elide doesn’t like to appear, but as nobody else she manages to move the public.
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Davide is project coordinator of ISP… in Africa. In Uganda since always, he has lived the tragic years of guerrilla, revolutions, Kalashnikov and hunger side by side with the locals. His efficiency is reassuring. He lives in Kampala with Giulia, his wife and little Leonardo, the second one is on his way.
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Andy is an adventurer. Six months spent in India alone, several trips in far lands have formed him. He likes jokes and has always one ready for you. At the back-office of the Hotel La Perla Andy and Fabian are the perfect duo. At the end of October 2016, he has been to Uganda for the inspection of the projects. His critical spirit and enthusiasm, have brought home the will to improve and help even further.
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His happiness is contagious, his advices precious. Daniele is managing the fund raising at Insieme si può… but his commitment goes well beyond. Together with him and Piergiorgio, in 2012 we have started our two green projects in Uganda. Daniele is a honest hand to hold in moments of necessity.
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In 2011 sister Patrizia has got here by chance, she was sent by the Providence to enrich our souls with tales of life. Together with Maristella, in Togo since thirty years already, she follows the school project there. When she happens to be in Italy though, she always finds the time to pop by to say hello.
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Alessandro is project coordinator for ISP… in Africa for Karamoja. He follows the projects directly, and makes them blossom. But his main strength, is listening to the local community, translate their needs and make possibilities out of them. He lives in Moroto with his karimojong wife Florence and the two children.
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Brigitte von Imhof
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Born in Munich, for many years Brigitte has been chef-reporter for the travel magazine “abenteuer und reisen”. During a work trip to Alaska, she got to know his husband Chris, who “at the end of the world” has created the biggest ski-resort. Now she works as a free journalist between these two worlds.
Merch follows the practical and less practical aspects, like bureaucracy, organization, fund raising. He is a tireless resource of ideas and like magic, from small thoughts, he gives birth to great projects. From his trips to India and Uganda, he has come back richer. Richer on thoughts.
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Ludwig is the foundation’s auditor. Our actions pass through his attentive control. He follows us with enthusiasm and commitment not only for the accounting aspects. He concretizes our ideas, our projects, our activity in numbers.
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Pio took a big commitment: he'll help Elide in controlling the numbers that turn around the Foundation. Budget, funding, revenues, loans are all figures important figures that have to be monitored regularly. Pio is that good, that he's also involved in writing down the annual report of the projects we endorse in Uganda.
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Lisa follows our donators with attention. She screens all the donations with precision, before they arrive entire and untouched to the ones in need. In 2012 Lisa, together with Stefan and Paolo, has been to Togo visiting sister Patrizia and Maristella. There she has lived the sustained children’s smile.
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Hannington Kakembo is the founder of the Ssezibwa Demonstration Farm in Mukono, Uganda. He follows his project, by the community for the community, with great commitment and passion, but most of all with transparency and efficiency.
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Joe follows the foundation since its birth in 2007. She is the mother hand which guides us gently and with great sensibility. Her advices are precious, her look honest. Twice she has been to India visiting our projects. She is responsible of the foundations press office and communication.
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Michil, thanks to him, the foundation project has been born. In 2007, together with his family, he brought the foundation to life and made its work possible. His commitment is great, he has got to know the Tibetan people, he has approached its thoughts. Michil’s contribution is of unexhausted creativity.
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Manuel takes care of the dialogue with the Tibetan Children’s Village. He follows our Tibetan projects. During his trips to India, he has got to know the children of the Tibetan peoples in exile developing a strong and honest relationship to them. When not on the road, he is the creative director of our meetings.
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Francesco Ricci is from Modena, since years he is active in company and social communication. To the foundation he offers his time and his words, rich on honesty and joy for life.
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