Kabingo is a small village in the rolling hills of western Uganda and home to 2,500 very friendly, yet very poor people. Most villagers are peasant farmers who scratch the earth for crops of beans, corn and potatoes. They carry their drinking and cooking water from muddy, parasite-infested ponds. Their mud bricks homes have no running water, electricity, or improved sanitation. Many parents have died from AIDS leaving behind orphans who are cared for by extended family. Kabingo children die from malaria, a preventable and treatable illness.
Despite their adversity, the villagers continue to work hard to earn some money for school and to care for their families. Common sights in Kabingo include children carrying water atop their heads, siblings with babies on their backs, women bent over boiling pots, and men pushing bike-loads of bananas to market.
Father Richard Kyankaaga, a Comboni Missionary priest who grew up in Kabingo, envisions a better life for his people. He built St. Bakhita Vocational and Secondary School in 2004, followed by a Dispensary in 2006 and a Guest House in 2009. His work establishes an infrastructure for change in Kabingo to help the villagers raise themselves out of poverty and to give them, above all things, HOPE.