emezza: a meal with friends


In Uganda, the hospitality you receive is unlike any other experience. You learn that community is built and thrives on practices of hospitality. It is a common practice to invite friends, and their friends, into your home and after a warm embrace and greetings are exchanged, everyone is offered a seat at the table where a meal is shared and friendships are celebrated. This table is not just a centerpiece for gathering, it acts as a means to break the plane of intimacy, to celebrate the bonds of community with an open heart, and to help everyone know that they belong. 

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After countless banana leaf bowls have been passed around with heaping piles of matooke, chicken, chapati, and the harvest from the garden, you’ve lost track of time. In just a couple of hours of sharing stories and laughter, you transition from guest to trusted friend. Raise the Roof Academy families believe inviting friends to a meal is the utmost expression of true friendship and strengthening community. It is in this spirit that we invite friends of Raise the Roof Academy to join us for Emezza.  


Emezza, meaning “table” in Luganda, is an experience we share with close friends around a meal with lots of stories and laughter. The Emezza gathering is designed for friends to connect in the name of children who, though they live miles away from us, are close in our hearts. Through Emezza, we inspire compassionate action. We introduce our friends in the US to children in Uganda who want to be in relationship with people who believe every child in the world deserves access to opportunities that unlock potential. 

RTRA believes in giving children a strong foundation to build their lives on, and it is with this conviction that we invite you to join as 1 of 50 Emezza hosts. As an Emezza host, you get to choose what you want your Emezza to look like and when you want to have it. It can be any time of the year, a major event such as a birthday, graduation, wedding, anniversary or a day of international recognition, such as Women’s Day, Teacher Appreciation, Nurse Appreciation, World Malaria Day or Water Day. You can do it with your book club, Sunday school class, or small group. Simply invite 10 or more of your friends to join you for a meal at your house or favorite restaurant. 

All of us at RTRA see Emezza as a great tradition that will enlarge our compassionate circles of friendship across the globe and uplift our teachers, teams, and students in Uganda to provide sustainable and longlasting solutions and continue building community. We are confident that one meal can spark change and create a ripple of possibilities that strengthen the bond of friendships here in the US and let children at Raise the Roof Academy know they belong.  

We will walk alongside you through these easy steps:

  1. Call to get all the details you’ll need and order your Emezza kit.
  2. Schedule your Emezza date and begin inviting 10 or more friends.
  3. Pick a RTRA Spotlight Project that you and your friends care about to create your meal theme. When you raise support for a Spotlight Project through Emezza, we will celebrate milestones with you and your friends and share updates from start to finish.

We are excited and want to share our creative tools with you in order to host Emezza. 
The RTRA Emezza kit includes the following:

  1. Name Tags - your guests can get to know one another easily
  2. Slideshow Presentation (emailed) - you can show all the latest photo updates and bullet points from RTRA
  3. Video (emailed) - your guests can feel the heart and passion in the Raise the Roof people
  4. Instructions - you can rest assured that you have easy-to-follow steps for hosting Emezza
  5. Recipe Cards - you can try a traditional Ugandan dish if you choose
  6. Interactive Game - your guests can learn about each other as they learn fun facts about Uganda
  7. Spotlight Project Hand-outs - your guests can read and take home key information
  8. Website Platform - you and your guests can go beyond your gathering table to share your fundraising goal with more people
  9. Remittance Envelopes and Pens - your guests can privately select the support level that is right for them
  10. Handcrafted Gifts from Uganda - your guests can take home a piece of Uganda as a reminder to pray for the students at RTRA
  11. A RTRA Speaker - let us know if you would like a RTRA speaker to join your Emezza gathering in-person, or via video call. We will help to arrange based on the Spotlight Project you choose. 

To request your Emezza kit submit the form below. Thank you for being a champion for students of Raise the Roof Academy through hosting Emezza! For more information, contact us at 615-686-9085 or info@raisetheroofacademy.org.  


Interested in hosting Emezza? request your kit below:

Name *