Posted on Nov 01, 2018
Way back in October 2013, 75 sailors boarded MV Amani for the maiden boat cruise organised annually by the Rotary Club of Kampala South. The purpose then was simply to raise funds to run club projects. Through the years the popularity of the #IndependenceBoatCruise has grown a hundred-fold from the 75 sailors in 2013 to 829 this year.  The fundraising has also leaped from Shs. 4,387,300 to about 36,000,000 
The reasons for this tumultuous rise in fame is based on two facts: -
  • The proceeds go towards very noble causes
  • It is  an exhilarating fun filled sailing experience with a firm safety record.
 
The trend of net collections from 2013 to-date
 
The 2018 edition set sail on Saturday 6th October, from Port Bell pier, Luzira aboard the biggest vessel in Ugandan waters, MV Kaawa The queues of eager revellers craning their necks seemingly worried that they wouldn’t board on time were characterized while the organisers toiled relentlessly to clear all sailors).
 
It was very humbling to have a very high-powered team from the district including IPDG Ken Mugisha (famously known for buying ticket No. 1), PDG Steven Mwanje, among other District and country officials   Notable among others were sailors from across borders who included a visiting Rotarian from New Delhi and 8 Rotarians from RC Milimani (Nairobi).
 
The sailors were treated to a mouth-watering BBQ meal upon boarding while two different DJ’s on separate decks ensured that the loud speakers belted out some of the finest tunes to enhance the feel-good factor. True to his brand, DJ Alberto and his team set the mood and revellers dancing even before the boat set sail. The presence of bars on all three decks provided a thrill to the revellers who didn’t have to wander before finding their drink of choice. Other wow factors were the presence of a medical team on six (6) doctors on board and the presence of life jackets, life buoys and a life raft to allay any fears about safety. The fact that revellers all attempted to adorn the white and black dress code enhanced the mood of cheers too.
 
The highlight of the event was the cheza dance sessions which lit up the crowds on the lower deck and had revellers leaving the higher decks to join in while others ogled and waved frantically at the show which was unfolding in front of their eyes.
 
The boat travelled up to the equator and headed back to Port Bell. So many revellers were first time cruisers and swore by the skin on their teeth that they would never miss another RC Kampala South Independence Boat Cruise. It was worthy the celebration as we were able to raise Shs 35,434,400 towards constructing a children’s ward at Kikandwa Health Centre. Please mark your calendars –  See you Saturday 5th October 2019.