Aug 2, 2021

Ewafe Project: Summer Update 2021

Welcome to your Summer update. As you may be aware, a strict lockdown was imposed in Uganda on the 18th of June to combat the rise of COVID-19 cases. Families in Kampala's slum communities have been left without an income, with some unable to afford food and care for their children.  

We launched our Serving Communities in Crisis emergency appeal to be there for our communities during lockdown. So far we have supported 4,243 people with COVID-19 relief including food packages, education materials and family support.

On Wednesday the 21st of June our Founder and Executive Director, Sam Wambayo, joined us for a Lunch n Learn. You can watch the event here and listen as Sam explains how Kids Club Kampala are there for the community and how the Ewafe home is playing a vital role in helping children in crisis. 

Ewafe Project Update

Unfortunately, as a direct result of the lockdown, the number of children being abandoned, abused and neglected has risen drastically. This, combined with school closures, has meant the Ewafe home has been very busy! 

Despite the uncertainty of lockdown in Uganda, we have lots of good news to share from the Ewafe home. With thanks to your regular donation, this quarter we have:

  • Rescued and admitted 9 children into the home.

  • Reintegrated 5 children back with their families.

  • Cared for the 47 children currently staying at the home.

Home schooling at the Ewafe Project.

*Nancy's Story 

Nancy* was referred to the Ewafe home in March. She was living with her mother, stepfather and two stepbrothers when she went missing. Nancy was taken to the local police station after a stranger found her wandering the streets. 

We were able to find Nancy’s mother and they were reunited on the 6th of April.       

‘I had to harvest and sell maize to get the money needed to continue searching for my child. But, she was nowhere to be found and I had given up hope until the Ewafe project brought her back to me. May God grant the Ewafe home more blessings.’ 

- Nancy's mother

              

The Ewafe Project has New Wheels!
 
We are so excited to have a new car at the Ewafe home. The home is located in Busika, an hour from Kampala. The dirt roads that have to be taken to reach neighboring towns, villages and districts are dangerous and are often at risk of flooding. 

With the new sturdy 4x4 car the Kids Club Kampala team will be able to quickly and safely reach children in need. It will also speed up the travel time taken to search for and reunite families.
The Ewafe Project is Expanding!
 
We have been expanding the Ewafe home including building a new therapy room to support children's rehabilitation, a new kitchen to account for growing numbers and purchasing land so we can grow our own crops.
 

Would you like a little tour of the progress so far?    


First up we have our new therapy room. Building work started on the 22nd of June and we are happy to report that it is almost complete! 

The therapy room will be vital when supporting and rehabilitating the kids that come to the Ewafe home. 

Here's the therapy room now. It's almost ready to go!

Now we're in the kitchen. An increase in children being admitted to the Ewafe home means there's more mouths to feed. Our new kitchen is bigger and solar powered!

 

We also had the opportunity to acquire some land around the Ewafe home. With this new land we will be able to grow our own crops and move towards a more sustainable future.

*Sabre's story
 
It is an unfortunate reality that incidences of child abuse and neglect increase during lockdown. Many people become vulnerable to violence in their own homes. 

Sabre* was abused by his father and ran to the police for help. He was referred to the Ewafe home along with his two siblings, *Hamma and *Isla, on the 24th of June. The three children are now safe, living at the Ewafe home whilst the police search for their father in order to reprimand him.


Sabre was rescued on the 24th of June

During lockdown, we have seen cases of violence increase. Although Sabre and his siblings were lucky enough to reach the police, for many children in Kampala emergency support is inaccessible.
Aug 2, 2021

Uganda Lockdown, 2021

The team at Kids Club Kampala want to keep our supporters up to date on the changing and challenging situation in Kampala. We have learnt a lot from the initial lockdown in Uganda and hope to continue supporting slum communities through this increasingly difficult period.

As society begins to open up more in the UK, unfortunately Uganda is grappling with another wave of COVID-19. In mid June, the President of Uganda imposed a partial lockdown with schools, places of worship and markets ordered to close and suspension of inter-district travel for 42 days.

As of Monday 14th of June, the total number of confirmed cases in Uganda stood at 60,250 with 423 deaths according to WHO. Uganda has had more than 30% rise in cases in the space of a week. The country’s health system is under serious strain with many struggling to find medical care. The harrowing reality is that both vaccines and oxygen are running low, leaving many vulnerable to the effects COVID-19.

The Kids Club Kampala team have began handing out food parcel’s in the slum communities.

The Kids Club Kampala team have began handing out food parcel’s in the slum communities.

COVID-19 lockdown procedures are having a devastating effect on the slum dwelling communities we support in Kampala.  Kids Club Kampala have been pursuing sensible solutions to contain the outbreak and provide essential supplies to those most in need. Wherever possible, we are using creative solutions to enable children's learning to continue amidst widespread restrictions, and to ensure they are safe whilst they are cut off from regular protection services. 

In slums children are locked down in cramped conditions, with parents not furloughed or working from home, but totally cut off from the means to earn. Not only are children denied food and education, but they cannot access the child friendly spaces and social structures that are desperately needed to keep them safe. Unfortunately, there has been a steep escalation of violence and safeguarding issues with the Kids Club Kampala team identifying 42 safeguarding concerns in just the last 2 weeks. 

We are ensuring our volunteers and recipients of support are protected as we continue to safeguard vulnerable children during the lockdown.

We are ensuring our volunteers and recipients of support are protected as we continue to safeguard vulnerable children during the lockdown.

Our projects are initially focusing on immediate needs and providing food to vulnerable children and families. We are also ensuring children continue their education by providing home school packages as well as teacher home school visits. Our safeguarding volunteers are doing house to house visits and supporting families and communities when they can with counselling support and often mediation. Our sewing, knitting and carpentry training continues with very small groups all socially distanced. Our Ewafe transitional home is full to capacity as some of the children have returned as schools are now closed.

We have learnt a lot from our response to the first lockdown in Uganda and are doing all we can within the government guidelines to support vulnerable communities get through this difficult time.  The road to recovery is a long one, and the impact of COVID-19 on the communities we work with will last a long time.

We are ensuring that communities can maintain a protective environment for their children throughout this pandemic. Our work can continue as many of our volunteers and staff live and work in the communities. 

We are incredibly grateful for the generous support we have received over this time, which has made it possible for us to stay connected to the children and communities who are most on the edge. 

We’re in it for the long term- we need to build resilience and not reliance.  

Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers.

Apr 16, 2021

Road to Recovery

Life under lockdown is hard for us all. Life under lockdown whilst living in a slum in one of the poorest countries in the world: almost impossible. When COVID-19 hit, we had to drastically adapt our work, prioritising supporting the immediate needs of Kampala’s most vulnerable families with food to ensure that they did not starve. Altogether, we have given our 1.2 million food parcels to over 32,000 families in Kampala’s slums.

Although we are now beginning to see life in Uganda return to some level of normality, there are several complex needs that now require addressing. Children have lost vital time in education, and women and children are at greater risk of violence and abuse. Many families are still struggling to find work, and need to continue using our food banks.

This is where Kids Club Kampala’s Road to Recovery plan comes into action. The plan is made up of four key phases outlined below, accompanied by a case story which reflects how the Road to Recovery is and will continue to change lives:

doreen.jpg

Phase 1: Feeding - providing immediate food support for families
Doreen*’s Story
“My name is Doreen, and I didn’t have anything to eat for Eid, until Kids Club Kampala provided me with food to eat. Kids Club Kampala have been very helpful to us all, they are not selective in who they help, and we have seen them doing everything they can for us during this lockdown season. They provide food items such as sugar, beans, cassava, potatoes, and so much more. I am really grateful and I pray for the expansion of this organisation so that it can continue to extend help to everyone in need”

hannah.jpg

Phase 2: Protecting - increasing safeguarding to keep children safe
Hannah*’s Story
Hannah was 15 when she was referred to our Ewafe project as a missing child in May 2020. Hannah opened up to us about why she ran away from home. “I stole my grandmother’s money because my friend told me to. When my grandmother realised and demanded her money be returned, I decided to run away from home. I ended up in a place that I didn’t know, and I was sleeping outside in the bush. One morning, the community members handed me over to the police. I’m so grateful to Kids Club Kampala for picking me up from the police and taking me in. I’m very happy because I receive everything that I need; we sleep well and eat good food and also have time to play”
We got in touch with Hannah’s grandmother, who later came to the Ewafe house to visit Hannah. They were both very happy to be reconciled, and her grandmother said: “I’m so grateful to the Ewafe project for taking good care of my granddaughter and keeping her safe in these hard times of COVID-19”.
Hannah was reintegrated with her family in Gombe parish, Wakiso district, on 7th July 2020.

john.jpg

Phase 3: Educating - increasing access to education
John*’s story
John is one of our sponsored children who has come through school and now has a job as a mechanic, demonstrating the long-lasting change we strive to achieve.
Having spent a year without going to school due to lack of fees and support, John had lost hope and never thought he would go back to school. Kids Club Kampala and his sponsor got John back to school, paying his fees and providing school materials. After completing his O Levels at Kampala High School, John opted to undertake a motor mechanics internship at a local garage.
John is now 22 years old and working at the garage in Katanga where he undertook his internship. The owner of the garage was so impressed with John that he decided to take him on full time. John now earns a sufficient income to comfortably support himself and his mother by contributing to household expenses. He plans to attain further skills by learning from his colleagues, and is particularly interested in car bodywork and would like to specialise in this area.

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Phase 4: Skilling - rebuilding livelihoods by providing vocational training
Elizabeth*’s story
“Before joining the tailoring project I was working in a school, but when schools were closed due to COVID-19, I was one of the people laid off. I was stranded and started wondering what was next for my life. A friend of mine who is a beneficiary of Kids Club Kampala’s tailoring project told me about the project, and luckily, they were still registering for the next intake and I was recruited. I am so grateful for the opportunity to acquire a skill in tailoring, and I am sure that my life will never be the same. I have already started getting customers for my products, and this has given me confidence. I might not look for a job again, but instead start my own tailoring business”.

Our Road to Recovery plan aims to transform lives and help Kampala’s most vulnerable communities rebuild after the repercussions of COVID-19.

*names changed

 
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