The Thot-Worldwide Foundation, Theatre for Education was set up in 2009, at the instigation of Maarten Bootsma. The foundation aims to:

“Open up social and societal issues for discussion and provide transparency for the target group ‘youth (12-18 years) and adults’ by means of educational and interactive theatre performances anywhere in the world, and in particular, in developing countries.”


After an interview with one of the victims of Kony, the next project arose: ‘Help women in Uganda grow old without pain’. In Northern Uganda, there are many women whose faces were severely mutilated by rebels during the war. Their ears and lips were cut off. Every day these women suffer and fight for their existence. Their dream is to grow old free of pain.


Aloe vera in uganda

In 2012, OVATA provided and distributed propagation materials for 1,500 Aloe vera plants. From these cuttings a beautiful field has now been created, which OVATA also finances the maintenance for. Every woman receives cuttings from this field to create her own patch. The Aloe vera is a succulent which has gel in its leaves which immediately relieves pain and makes the skin supple. The women are taught to process the gel into medicine. In this way they help themselves, their communities and can earn their own money to live …. without pain!

Read more about the organisation Hope North Uganda here.

UPDATE June 2017

From the land of Hope North, 30 bags with 150 cuttings each have been transported to Gulu. Ten bags (with 150 Aloe vera cuttings per bag) were brought to the Batwa’s (pygmies) in a period of no less than 18 hours. A social worker in Batwa’s has plotted the cuttings on a new piece of land. The social worker already “borrowed” a goat for working in the land in January. Anna, a woman with a biological pesticide shop in Gulu, received the remaining twenty bags with cuttings. She divides the bags among 20 local farmers.

UPDATE February 2020

The Aloe vera plant do well in the natural habitat. A beautiful field was planted near the city of Kabale. Kabale is located at the foot of the mountains in southern Uganda and at the border of Rwanda and Congo-Kinshasa. The field planted there is lovingly maintained by Sara (social worker). Two years later she ensured that the Aloe vera have become beautiful large plants with many cuttings. An Aloe vera gives about 10 cuttings per year. These cuttings are removed from the plant and given away to create new fields.

The Aloe vera plant also grow well with the Batwa. They are familiar with the medicinal effect of the Aloe vera. A small field has been planted, sometimes 2/3 plants together. They also hide the medicine in the bushes and in the swamp.

In 2020, four bags full of Aloe vera cuttings have been taken from a field to the Batwa Pygmies in the mountains. These are not the first bags of cuttings that the Bawas had received, but the Batwas have been driven from the forests by the army and have no land, are starving and many are sick. Fields sometimes wash away or are used out of necessity before the plants have reached full maturity.

In the north, two bags have been brought from the city of Gulu to Arua, because small fields are also being built there. Women’s groups created around Thoth-Worldwide theater projects are working on their independence here and want to get out of the poverty that holds them captive.

The plant is truly Nature’s Secret Healer!

UPDATE September 2022

The Batwas are no longer allowed in the jungle because the government has determined that the last mountain gorillas must be protected because this is good for tourism. However, this has ensured that the Batwas can no longer go into the jungle to provide themselves with food.


Together with the THOT-worldwide organization and the donations from OVATA, the Batwas have received all the means to make honey themselves, such as: beehives, protection material and processing equipment. There are now 20 beehives at two Batwa groups. 10 hives per group.


The first ‘harvest’ of honey was only a very small amount, but the Batwas were already very proud of that. The amount of honey is increasing.


The Aloe vera field and the production of honey have given the Batwa a new purpose in life, granting them access to food and medicine. The honey and Aloe vera leaves they produce can also be used as trade goods.

UPDATE February 2023

The purpose of the visit in February is to bring the Aloe vera cuttings closer to the Batwa. The Aloe vera plants are used as medicine, but are stolen at night by neighbors. As a result, the existing Aloe vera field is almost empty. In other places in Uganda there are Aloe vera fields where the cuttings are taken from. These are then brought back to the Batwa.

We also give the Bata explanation about using Aloe vera.



The Batwa (known, pejoratively as “pygmies” in the west because of their height) are one of the oldest surviving tribes in Africa, but their culture, identity and language are under increasing threat. Many communities have been displaced by conservation projects and the remaining forest has been severely degraded by large-scale logging, expansion of farmland and commercial activities such as the intensive trade in ‘wild meat’.

The Pygmies suffer from extreme poverty and poor health in ‘illegal’ settlements on the outskirts of areas that once belonged to them.