Sep 4, 2020

Library Provides Great Value During Covid Times

Teachers wearing masks at the library - late June
Teachers wearing masks at the library - late June

With Uganda's schools still closed due to the government's shutdown orders during covid, our library has proved to be a huge benefit to the community. Fortunately, the school's librarian lives nearby and can open the library when needed if a student needs to borrow or return a textbook.

The library also serves as a central meeting place when teachers come to the school monthly. The photo shows a brief meeting of teachers in the library. Classrooms in the school remain closed.

The library still needs student textbooks. Currently, students remain at home, but with study materials provided to them by the district. They are supposed to be studying on their own. If the library had more textbooks, more students would be able to access them for use with their home study materials from the district.

We thank you so much for the funds donated to date so that we could construct the library and provide for technology equipment storage. And we are very thankful for the hundreds of books donated from the U.S. which volunteers brought with them this past year!

If we can upgrade our fairly meager collection of Uganda textbooks, that would help us meet the final goal of this project. We aim  to help our many students access needed educational materials so they can be competitive with more developed areas of the country, and be successful on their national exams.

Please share this report with friends, family, teachers and librarians who know the power of a book in a child's life.

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Sep 3, 2020

July Meeting with Girls to Keep Them Inspired

Meeting with 58 Uganda Girls in mid-July
Meeting with 58 Uganda Girls in mid-July

Uganda's lockdown, with no school in session, has continued longer than we had hoped. As of today, schools are still closed. The government still prohibits gatherings larger than 5 people. Students have received study materials in June and are supposed to be studying at home.

In light of these circumstances, our Uganda staff requested special permission from the district to conduct special occasional meetings with the girls in our parish (like a county). We began meeting with them in mid-July to stress the continued importance of school and studying while at home, to encourage them to focus on their goals, and to receive feedback from them on the issues they face at home during the lockdown.

Fifty--eight girls attended the first meeting. We've included a photo of that meeting in this report. The biggest issue they reported was being overworked at home doing farming as well as caring for younger siblings. In two cases, the mother had permanently left the home. The girls were excited about the meeting and all agreed the meetings should continue.

Our staff met the next week with the mothers to provide encouragement, and give feedback from the girls meeting. Staff also met with district education officials to brief them on the status of our girls and encourage the district to promote similar meetings throughout the district.

We are continuing to monitor the situation and have also scheduled our primary school's teachers to meet with 6th grade students individually at their homes to help with the students' home learning, answer questions etc.

We believe our girls are doing the best possible under the circumstances. In the next month, we will discuss more with district education officials to see if we can help with girls' meetings at other nearby schools in our district.

We thank you for your continued support of keeping girls motivated about their schooling and for giving us the means to assist especially those girls who do not yet have sponsors.

We would very much appreciate if you can share about this project with your friends, family and co-workers who feel strongly about girls' education.

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Sep 3, 2020

Clinic Treats High Volume of Patients with Malaria

Agwata clinic patients waiting in line - late May
Agwata clinic patients waiting in line - late May

Our northern Uganda clinic continued to experience extremely high numbers of malaria patients during the June to August period. Normally, this is a drier time of year and malaria cases are less. But this year has been one of the wettest, rainiest June to August periods  in over 30 years. As a result, many people got malaria.

The photo shows the front veranda of the clinic with patients waiting in line in late May. We have since purchased more clinic benches so family groups can be more socially distanced as they wait. 

We are thankful for your support of this project so that we can continue to keep the clinic stocked with needed medicines even during this unexpectedly high usage period.  At the same time, the clinic has been busy upgrading its sanitation proecedures and making other improvements which will be beneficial as the number of covid cases continues to rise in Uganda. So far, covid cases in the clinic's sub-county have been low.  

We are working on completing the separate latrines for clinic patients to use which will be separate from the latrinces used by clinic staff.  Our project coordinator who uses our project vehicle has continued to spend much of his time transporting seriously ill patients to the nearest hospital which is about an hour away. 

We were asked to do this by the district since public transport was shut down for a long time and even now, motorcycles that people normally hire for transport have been severely restricted in their operation. And the weather has made some of the local roads impassable to motorcycles. We are thankful our project vehicle has been able to make it through okay.

Our clinic is continuing its outreach to twenty needy, older women in the parish (like a county) who need assistance with food, and blankets to keep them warm as the cooler and wettest rainy season approaches.

Thanks again for your support in helping the clinic meet the needs of the parish's residents in these challenging times!

We would very much appreciate it if you could share this report with friends, families or co-workers that you think might be interested in helping with the village's women and children with their health needs!

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