Mon me Morungole and thoughts on community tourism (with courtesy images from “Portraits of Kampala”)

I was going to just post a slideshow of pictures taken by Dani Walker Kreutter of Portraits of Kampala like we have done before with pictures of women of Kampala.

And you should see them.

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When I saw these pictures earlier in the year, I was amazed at the inadequacy of my education. I panicked a little and wondered who else was a part of my country and I had no idea. Dani had been kind enough to give some information when she uploaded the pictures on Facebook as well as a link to a Wikipedia entry for more.

But there were still questions like, how come we learn in SST about the people of Uganda and none of my teachers at that primary school said anything about the Ik? What does this mean for them, and for us, and for our nationality? I am certain being talked about in a class does not bring social services into an area but there might be some correlation between access and visibility.

Anyway, that was what I was thinking at the time. However, as I sat down to put up this blog post, I decided to search more aggressively. Then I found that NTV Uganda had done a mini-documentary about them.

This was nice, given that they have a large viewership in the country.

So why am I writing instead of just sharing the pictures? Well, I am not sure. I am incredibly uncomfortable with this community tourism idea. The title of that YouTube-hosted video from NTV Uganda reads “Trek to the Ik: One of Uganda’s smallest tribes draws tourists”. *draws tourists* We hear from a USAID person and from Maben Lotyang who is said to be “the only Ik tour ranger” and we-the viewers- basically tour the Ik. I don’t know if I am comfortable with this.

Would you get on board with the “community tourism” shebang? Leave your thoughts in the comments section.

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