Virtually everyone has been affected in some way by Coronavirus and we hope you are managing through the difficulties. The slum families of Namatala in Uganda are in a desperate situation and so we are asking if you could help us with a donation.
With Uganda in total lockdown from Covid-19 fears, the situation in Namatala is becoming dire and there is a sense of desperation gripping the entire community. Crime is going up as people become increasingly desperate. A woman was killed and robbed about 200 metres from our school. The school buildings and equipment are vulnerable as desperate people seek to steal anything they might be able to sell.
The urgency is not only that the children can no longer get the daily meals they used to get at school, but that mothers are unable to leave their houses and cannot earn anything to put food on the table for their families. Hunger and starvation are the greatest challenges currently facing our Child of Hope pupils. Rats have almost been wiped out from the slum – nearly all have been eaten. And more…
The 324 mothers on our IGA (Income generating Activities) programme cannot run their small businesses to earn income and some are already using up what little business capital they had to buy food.
80 mothers in our agriculture project cannot go to the fields to grow food for their families.
And food prices have already gone up and are rising further.
Although closed, we are still paying staff wages while funds allow, but as they are on relatively low salaries, even a 20% cut would cause them and their families significant hardship. Nearly 100 families are dependent upon this income. Staff will not only be supporting their own household units, but probably their wider families too where they have no other income.
Child of Hope has always aimed to impact the wider community. After consultation with doctors in the local clinics around Mbale, the team made the decision to help supply protective masks to help our local community. So far, our tailors locally have made 500 masks under the supervision of our school nurse, which were gratefully received.
Child of Hope is working hard to ensure relief reaches the most vulnerable families in the community. We want to help keep our staff, pupils and their families alive until they can move around freely once more and the schools re-open.
How can Child of Hope supporters help? Join our campaign to raise £50,000 to support families in the slum.
If we raise more than the target, we will use the funds to extend our reach with more families, and for the most urgent need.
Thank you again to everyone who has generously donated to our emergency appeal to support slum families through the coronavirus crisis. To date we have received £54,344, which is helping many hundreds of slum families survive through a long period of total lockdown. We will continue to support them until the crisis and its after-effects are over.
Uganda has reportedly had the toughest restrictions in the whole of Africa. Lately reactions to it have been getting out of hand, so the government is starting to ease down the lockdown. Most shops and restaurants have opened.
The lockdown is still in force but in schools, exam candidate classes (P7, S4 and S6) are due to restart in July. Our team has laid its plans… staff can provide masks for the children (our tailors have been making them), they can spread out the children and have sanitisers available. However we have to wait for guidance from the Ministry of Education before re-opening.
Helpfully, restrictions on travel within Uganda have been lifted slightly and private cars are now allowed with three occupants (in masks that the government has said it will issue to everyone). Public transport was due to re-start on the June 4 but again that won’t happen until the masks are available.
Most cases testing positive at the moment are from truck drivers or their contacts. All foreign truck drivers who test positive at the borders now get sent back to their home countries.