Over the past year, we’ve been waiting and planning our special annual incentive Sseko Fellows trip to Uganda … and we’re thrilled to share IT HAS HAPPENED! Sseko recently took our top leaders to Uganda for an all-expenses-paid trip to learn and understand how the products they’re selling are made and to connect with our amazing team of women in Uganda. The greatest part is … these 14 Sseko Fellows earned their way onto this trip, simply by pursuing their passion to make an impact in the world.
It was truly a trip of a lifetime and a dream to see both teams connect in more ways than one.
In Uganda, Sseko Fellows had the opportunity to meet so many incredible Ugandan women and participate in so many unforgettable activities, including:
- Finally meeting their Sseko sister face to face
- Visiting the Sseko factory and building custom, handmade leather pieces in the workshop
- Meeting the Sseko Scholars of 2020 and visiting the Cornerstone Leadership Academy to meet future Sseko employees
- Going on an adventure-filled safari (that happened to take place on Galentine’s Day!)
- Competing in a friendly fashion show and dance-off completion with our Uganda team
Carisa Montgomery, a Sseko Fellow, shared that her favorite moment of the trip was finally meeting her Sseko Sister, Milly. Carissa and Milly got connected through Sseko’s match quiz, where each took a quiz and were matched together based on similar interests and qualities. After building a friendship with each other across continents, they finally got to connect face to face. We were all fortunate to witness this very emotional and special moment.
“Meeting my Sseko Sister in the flesh and getting to know her and just hang out with her was priceless,” said Carissa.
The Sseko Fellows also had the opportunity to visit our factory in Uganda to see the incredible work they do every day, creating gorgeous handmade products. After seeing the energy and the amount of time taken to create each beautiful item, our Sseko Fellows always exclaim, “These should cost way more than they do!” We live in a society where we don’t get to see how or where our stuff is made. Sadly, this is often an intentional veil with a goal of putting profits over people. But it’s this very same veil that keeps us from witnessing and understanding the magic,wonder and sheer skill that goes into making the items we wear every day.
At the Cornerstone Leadership Academy (CLA), the Sseko Fellows got to see the water well our community-funded on the campus to ensure these female scholars have access to clean and safe drinking water throughout the year. Partnering with CLA is one of our greatest privileges! The young Ugandan women who are accepted to CLA are university-bound women who complete our nine-month employment program that enables them to continue on to college. These young women are not only bright and motivated but incredibly inspiring as well. Visiting them on the CLA campus was such a treat. Not to mention, competing in a dance-off and fashion show!
But there’s more! We decided to treat our Sseko Fellows to a little bit of adventure in Uganda as well. After doing a Nile River Safari and seeing crocodiles, hippos, giraffes, and more, we got back into the Safari vans. We were flying over red dirt hills and the dust was billowing into our faces. We were singing Celine Dion at the top of our lungs and laughing until our sides hurt. It was an unforgettable moment.
We will always carry this special trip to Uganda and its memories in our hearts.
And what’s more beautiful is that each Fellow that attended this trip did so on her own merit. We asked each Fellow the average amount of time they put into their Sseko entrepreneurship and the answer ranged from 5 to 15 hours a week! These Fellows also range from single women to moms with full-time jobs. For some, selling Sseko products is a passion and for others it’s a hobby. Becoming a Sseko Fellow is for anyone who wants to take giant leaps and small steps towards using their talents to make an impact felt across the world. Through their Sseko businesses, they are able to create opportunities for themselves, their families, AND their sisters in East Africa.
We would love for you to join us in this incredible legacy of global impact today. And by joining now, not only will you be able to start your business with our newly launched spring collection — but you will have plenty of time to earn YOUR trip to Uganda next year!