Thanks to all of TUSC’s wonderful friends and supporters, Yakub is now driving new transport for TUSC!
Billy bus served TUSC very well for almost 4 years, but the roads in Uganda are very trying on vehicles. Carol and Yakub researched the best type of vehicle to purchase for TUSC that would accomplish two main goals:
Provide functional space for transporting TUSC friends (ie: the seats would need to be folded down to accommodate patients where necessary.)
Be robust enough to weather the very difficult Uganda roads.
The vehicle that seemed to best accomplish those goals turned out to be a Toyota Land Cruiser. After roving the car bonds on several occasions (those of you who follow our Facebook page have probably read about the less-than-pleasant experience!), Carol met someone on the plane to Uganda in March who provided her a contact (called Mintu) who might be able to help. Carol reached out to Mintu, who happened to repair and refurbish vehicles for the Irish Embassy. Mintu was incredibly helpful and even pre-researched suitable vehicles given TUSC’s needs and budget! After meeting Mintu at the car bonds one day in March, Carol and Yakub found their vehicle: a white Toyota Land Cruiser. Yakub described the potential new vehicle for TUSC as a “posh car”, and was very excited and proud to be photographed in the driver’s seat. Carol and Yakub provided an offer on the car and it was accepted by the owner! Even better, the owners of the car bonds purchased Billy Bus for a fair amount. Transferring ownership of vehicles in Uganda is not as straight-forward as it is in the West, especially because money had to be moved from England, however several days after Carol and Yakub put in the offer, they were able to obtain their new “Nellie Ann Van”.
Nellie Ann wasn’t completely ready to be of service to TUSC quite yet, and once again Mintu showed his generous spirit and offered to modify the rear seats so that they would be more functional for TUSC, all done without charge! Carol and Yakub were incredibly grateful and delivered Nellie Ann to Mintu and his staff who provided new seats and welding to reconfigure the seating system in the back of the vehicle. After two weeks of work, Nellie was ready to hit the Ugandan red soil.
The Nellie Ann Van has been toiling on the Ugandan roads now for a few weeks, and Carol and Yakub are thrilled with the new vehicle. TUSC patients are more comfortable and repairs are less frequent. However, Nellie Ann is “greedier” than Billy was, consuming more fuel….and insurance has gone up by 500%! All part of the “journey” for us at TUSC HQ – continue to work hard so that journeys can continue in Uganda.
Carol and Yakub are thankful to all TUSC supporters who continue to help us do what we do!