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‘I can’t stress enough what a huge support the community has been’ – Emma’s annual jumble sale returns to Wortham next month

By Zach Ward

Emma Poppenborg and Wagobera Christopher.
Emma Poppenborg and Wagobera Christopher.

The founder of a charity to support young people in Uganda says she will be returning to the country next year to see the inspiration behind the organisation.

Former Wortham Primary School pupil Emma Poppenborg was inspired to help Wagobera Christopher during a four-month trip to rural Uganda in 2004.

I can’t stress enough what a huge support the local community has been over the years
Emma Poppenborg, founder, Wagobera

Christopher, who was then 11-years-old, finished at the top of his class – but he was unable to go to secondary school because his family could not afford the fees.

The charity Wagobera was formed. And now, 13 years on, Chris will finish his studies in February. He has been a student at Kampala International University, where he is reading medicine.

An annual jumble sale, which has helped raise more than £7,000 for the charity over the years, returns to Wortham Village Hall on Saturday, October 7, from 2pm to 4pm.

Emma praised the support of the local community – and said she would not miss Christopher’s graduation next year “for the world.”

“I really look forward to the Wortham jumble sale each year,” she said. “It’s become somewhat of a get together for all our helpers who we couldn’t do it without and it’s so lovely to see the familiar faces of people who come along each year.

“I can’t stress enough what a huge support the local community has been over the years.

“There have been times when it has been a struggle to raise enough for the fees, or where I’ve felt disheartened.

“Running a charity from afar, in a country that is often very corrupt, can be quite frustrating at times, and it’s this encouragement that has spurred me on and got the charity to where it is today.”

Five of the ten students supported by Wagobera will be completing their studies next year. Emma said she will be visiting to decide on the charity’s next steps.

Unwanted books, toys, CDs, clothes, linen and other items can be dropped off at the village hall on the morning of the sale.

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