When you live in a country as gifted as Uganda, it’s hard to decide where to spend that precious family time with kids. And considering that we have been dealing with coronavirus-related travel restrictions for months, the choice even becomes harder.
However, as you well know, most kids live in a bit of a “life bubble.” What they experience is often their perception of the world. By taking them outside of that daily bubble you are giving them new experiences that can reshape how they view the world.
A good place for kids to visit is the Uganda Wildlife Conservation Education Centre in Entebbe (UWEC). While here, Kids are able to experience firsthand things they might have learned about in school or at home.
UWEC is not exactly the same as being in a safari park, and it is different from a conventional zoo atmosphere. This is because while at UWEC, kids are able to learn about conservation efforts and the importance of looking after the planet’s wildlife. As well as running around in a state of frenzied excitement, the most common activity that kids carry out at UWEC is asking questions.
1. Behind the scenes tour
If you want to see the animals up-close and personal, this tour is just what you need. Get a chance to observe the animal’s behaviour and learn more about their patterns.
You can take part in preparing the foods for the animals, watch them while they get fed, participate in health checks and bring them back to their shelters. This will give you a feel of their everyday life and appreciation of what the education centre is all about.
2. Keeper for the day tour
Enrichment is the process of providing an animal like Vin, the 🐆 with simulation that seeks to make his life in care more interesting and meaningful. It allows him him to utilise the skills and behaviours that he would naturally use in the wild such as climbing and jumping. pic.twitter.com/zADvB8fTnF
— UWEC (@UWEC_EntebbeZoo) August 24, 2020
This is a more-hands-on tour where you take part in feeding some of the animals. You have a chance to ride along with the UWEC keepers, have briefings, prepare the animal food and move from shelter to shelter feeding them and spending some quality time with them.
3. Chimpanzee close up
UWEC is using this platform as an awareness tool to the conservation of endangered species like the chimpanzee. Here, you get to get up close with small chimpanzees as they make rounds in the early morning excited about the day, you play around with them and completely interact as much as you want.
This experience is very different from tracking the chimpanzees in places like Kibale Forest or Kyambura Gorge in Queen Elizabeth National Park but all the same very rewarding. While you won’t directly play with the chimps in the wild, you get to do that here.
4. Keepers guided tour
For a full-on educative tour, the keepers guided tour will be your best choice. This will give you lots of insights on the different animal’s origin story and how they have since developed and understand their behaviours more.
Tips for parents planning a visit to UWEC
UWEC is a fun day out for children, but it can be an exhausting day out for parents.
As a parent or guardian, consider visiting UWEC’s website prior so as to understand which animals your children would like to see. Don’t forget to check the daily schedules and take advantage of special events. Details can also be got via phone +256 414 320 520.
Make sure you wear comfortable shoes, take sunscreen and a hat.
Stop and rest frequently – take advantage of seating areas where you can stop and rest. These breaks will provide young children some downtime during the education tour.