Accommodation is provided by the school, rent free. We are lucky to live in a great house on the compound and we really like it. Having said all that the sofa has always been a little uncomfortable, wooden arms and thin foam seats make your arms ache and your bum numb fairly quickly.
At Easter whilst traveling through Uganda we came across this great coffee place in Mbale, for seating they used pallets stacked and topped with foam cushions – the seating was great.
So we had an idea- find some pallets and get a ‘Fundi’ to make some cushions – hey presto a new (and cheap) sofa.
The first thing we needed was to source the pallets. A chance conversation with the husband of a colleague gave us a solution. His company regularly receive goods on pallets and they were just thrown away. So we arranged that next time pallets were delivered we would get some.
I arrived home last Friday to find a stack of pallets in the garden – so game on!
The first job was to arrange the pallets into a frame upon which to make the sofa.
Saturday, we headed to town to find material to make the cushions – there is a place to buy foam nearby and we started there.
Sadly the foam was completely inappropriate and we moved on – as we did so we exchanged greeting with a guy who turned out to be a businessman who in cconversation it turned out knew a man who knew a man who knew a man who could make our furniture. Through a series of meetings over the next hour we arranged to have the furniture made at a very reasonable cost.
Our guy knew where to get the best foam and good sofa covering – so over the next two hours we went around town procuring the materials.
Our fundi (a word meaning worker) was able to construct the sofa over two days and so it began. He brought across his manual sewing machine and over the two days he modified the pallets, cut the foam and made the covers.