Akello

A personal essay about day-to-day life for Akello, a girl from Pabo in northern Uganda.

Akello sitting on a straw mat in her school uniform.

By Akello from Uganda

My name is Akello. My home is in Pabo Center, Pabo, which is in northern Uganda. In Uganda most schools have a required uniform. For girls, this usually means a collared shirt and skirt that goes below the knees. 

I go to school at Keyo Secondary School because of the good environment and because of the good performance. At school we have to wear a uniform. I actually really like it! Girls have to wear navy blue skirts and white socks. We also have to wear a white button up shirt with our school badge on the front pocket. We call our school crest a badge. I like the design. On the badge it says, Keyo S.S. Arise and Shine

Many girls in this area have shaved heads. Going to school means that they shave off their hair to keep everyone looking the same. While in school I like chatting with friends. It doesn’t matter who it is, I like chatting with boys and girls. Even if I am tired, I like chatting with friends. I just love being around my friends. When I am free, I like reading books. 

After school we like to dance! There are many traditional dances in Uganda. Another activity we like to do after school is playing games. We also love to play with jump ropes! You can either play by yourself or skip with your friends. If we can’t find a hula hoop we use old tires instead. They are actually a lot of fun!

When I get home I like to cook bwo, a green leafy vegetable. I like to cook it because it is very nice! A major task every day is sorting through bwo. Mostly, I help my mother and father with the work. I love to help with the cooking. I like to smear the house to repairing the mud walls and also to help fetch water and collect firewood. 

Akello sorting Bwo


This personal essay was developed as part of the Girl Child Project. For the project, Peace Corps Volunteers around the world collected and shared stories of girls in their communities to celebrate their diverse paths toward opportunity and success. This project was facilitated by the Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment Working Group at Peace Corps Headquarters.


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