On 3 August, seven young people from Bow in East London took part in an event called Slum Survivor to raise money for Kids Club Kampala and also for their trip to the summer conference Soul Survivor. The young people are part of a youth project called Eden Bow which aims to empower young people in their local area to dream bigger dreams for themselves, their community and the world.
We catch up with Tim who spent 24 hours building a slum and completing challenges and we ask him what he thought of the experience.
Tell us a bit about yourself
Hi, I’m Tim, I’m 14 years old and I am from East London. I support Manchester United and I love playing tennis. My mum is from Kampala in Uganda.
Thanks Tim, what did you get up to last Thursday?
Basically, we had to build a slum to sleep in. We were given a bits of wood [wooden pallets and old wardrobes] and plastic sheeting to cover it over. We were only allowed to use rope and nails to put it together. We built it in the garden of the local community centre.
Were there any rules about what you were allowed to do?
Yea. We weren’t allowed to use our mobile phones and we only ate three meals of rice and daal over the whole 24 hours. If we won any of our challenges then we got a an extra piece of white bread. We were only allowed to drink water.
What sort of challenges were there?
At one point in the afternoon I asked if I could play football. One of the leaders told me that if I wanted to play football then I would have to make my own football out of carrier bags, newspaper and string. Obviously I just wanted to use a proper football. The challenge was hard as the quality of ball wasn’t great and the string kept coming undone.
What do you reckon Jose Mourinho would make of that task?
I reckon he could do it, obviously he would find it hard as he is used to having lots of money but he’s come from a difficult background so he is used to working hard.
What was the hardest challenge?
I would have to say that the water challenge was hardest. Olivia from KCK told us about how people have to walk a long way to collect water in Uganda and this is for drinking, washing and cooking so they need to get lots. We had to move water from a large bucket to another one about 20 metres away by carrying pots of water on our heads. It was very tiring and we all got soaked.
What did you miss the most during the 24 hours?
I missed proper food! Well ... it is proper food, but I missed the variety. I just knew my sister and uncle were eating some great food at home. I really missed sugar and so my energy levels were really low. When I went home I just fell straight onto my bed.
What did you learn about Kids Club Kampala that surprised you?
I was very surprised to hear that KCK works in 18 communities and is helping 4000 children. That’s a huge amount!
Given that you were also raising money for your trip to Soul Survivor, what are you most looking forward to about that trip?
So much!!! I love the camaraderie with everyone and getting to learn more about God. Going the last two years has been life changing for me as I have seen a side of God I had never seen before.
What is your biggest takeaway from this experience?
I definitely appreciate more what I have. I hardly slept that night as it was very uncomfortable in the slum. I appreciate that I have proper bed, a games console, a loving family and roof over my head that won’t leak or break. I have lots of things that not many people have.
Any final words of wisdom?
I heard that if I have a roof over my head, running water and food every day then I am in the top 4% most privileged people in the world. I am very lucky and very privileged.
Thanks for sharing about your experience Tim! Sounds like you had an interesting and challenging time.
Tim is one of Eden Bow’s Soul Survivor veterans, this year will be his third time attending the summer conference. He is also a young person who is passionate about making a change in the world and he enjoyed finding out more about the work of Kids Club Kampala.
A huge congratulations to the seven young people who slept outside in their slum and participated in so many tricky challenges. We’re particularly impressed that they even ate rice and daal for breakfast. There is still time to donate to support these guys and help them reach their target here.
Inspired by what these young people have done? We are here to help! Why not get involved in running this in your own community and share your stories of what you have learned.