Who we are

The Uphill Trust is a small Scottish charity founded in January 2015 to support the development of Uphill Junior School. The Chairman of The Uphill Trust, Niall “Max” Macdonald, got to know the founders of the school whilst rediscovering his roots in the west of Uganda (his father had served with the Ugandan Police before Independence).

Where is Uphill Junior School?

Max visited the nascent school in October 2013 and was inspired by the children he met there and by the vision of the School Director and the struggle that he faced developing an educational facility on a small unimproved plot of rented land with very little funding. He resolved to do “something”, thinking initially that he might be able to find enough money to provide corrugated iron sheets for the roofless classrooms. Personal donations were made by members of the Macdonald family following this visit and a roof duly appeared.

Read about Max’s fortuitous encounter with Ugandan law enforcement 

By the time Max took his wife Belinda to visit the school in October 2014, both regular and lump sum contributions were being made by family members, well-wishers and community groups in the UK to provide a water collection tank and equipment for the school. At this point the decision was made to set up The Uphill Trust which allowed us to formalise and extend the fundraising needed to help this excellent little school deliver reliable, high quality education to the children in this remote rural location.

Mission Statements for the Trust and the School

Uphill Trustees: N R L Macdonald, B L Macdonald, H E S Laird, S A Macdonald, C J Macdonald;  co-opted Committee Member, A I Smith

More information about the trustees and their roles

uphill trustees

First trustee visit in February 2015:  Max, Alison, Belinda and Liddy all dressed up for kindergarten graduation at Uphill

uphill founders

Kindergarten graduation 2015: Max with the school founders Kukundakwe Patrick and Muhimbise Elius

Early Days of the Uphill Trust

 Uphill Artist

Scottish Illustrator and Comic Artist Catriona Laird designed the logo for the trust and school in 2015, whilst still a student at the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design in Dundee. You can see more of Catriona’s work on her website.

In 2016 she published ‘Patience Goes Uphill’, an illustrated story book inspired by the enormous struggle faced by children in Uganda to get an education. All the proceeds from purchases of the book are used to fund  projects at the school. You can buy a copy of the book on Gifts that Give and see more illustrations from the book on our blog.

In 2017 Catriona began designing  a range of e-cards for the trust which you can find on the charity support website Don’t Send Me A Card.com.

You will find other lovely examples of her work throughout our website. Thank you Catriona!