Nov 16, 2020

Food security in the slums.

Food security is critical for both economic and human capital development due to its role of nutrition in healthy growth.  Slum residents, already grossly affected by chronic poverty, are highly vulnerable to food insecurity. Due to the covid -19 induced lockdown in Uganda, Prices of foods doubled and simultaneously household purchasing power was eroded due to worsened unemployment situation. The use of negative coping strategies to address food insecurity such as reducing the number of meals, reducing food variety and quality, and eating street foods is still prevalent.

Going without food unintentionally and regularly is not without adverse health effects over time. It may cause serious damage to the physical and mental health of those affected. Wide spread hunger and food insecurity may also pose social problems. Fighting to address food insecurity may lead to socially undesirable actions such as theft or other criminal actions. Searching for enough food could also take away the attention of affected households from other priorities such as children’s schooling.

In Makerere Kivulu, one of the slum communities in Kampala 50 % of residents frequently go a whole day and night without food. Women and children were greatly affected by the lockdown as most them are single mothers and can there for not provide food for their families.

Most people don’t really care what kind of food they are eating because they rely on what they can afford. You can find that in a household they have been eating maize meal and beans for one week continuously and it is not because they want to, but they are not able to afford to change the diet.

…And I can tell you there are many people here who sleep on porridge only. You find that they drank porridge in the morning, never had anything at lunch time and then in the evening they make the same porridge “says Oliver (not real name) a single mother of two as she, cuddles her three-and-a-half-month-old daughter in her arms.

 Back yard farming may be a promising strategy to address household food security as it has been seen to improve food diversity and livelihoods, but on a small scale given lack of adequate farming land in urban areas. Our campaign to feed the hungry children and women in the slums of Kampala is still running and we appreciate all the generous contributions in addressing this noble cause.

Oct 6, 2020

SITUATION IN THE SLUMS

If  you take a stroll in most of Uganda's slums, you will encounter many single mothers struggling to fend for their children. With no resources, single mothers leave their children to the mercy of fate. Consequently, the children end up on the streets and engage in activities such as sex work, theft, and drug abuse. Amidst such tough conditions, it is very hard for most of the youngsters to live their dreams or even make ends meet. make

The pandemic has brought hunger  to millions of people around the world. National lockdowns and social distancing measures are drying up work and incomes, and are likely to disrupt agricultural production and supply routes — leaving millions to worry how they will get enough to eat.As one enters the slum, the impact of the lockdown turns starker. Some residents have been living here for a long time but many from the other districts are stuck and look forward to return home as their patience and money run out.

Most of Uganda’s urban residents are a hand-to-mouth lot. Literally, they live off their ability to make it to town centers every day. A slight disruption in this routine means people will go hungry at home.

Eunice(not real name), a mother of three who lives in a suburb of Kampala, the nation’s capital, said she and her family have been eating maize porridge for a week now because she doesn’t have more food.

“I boil water, and when it is ready I add maize flour to make porridge. That is what we eat for breakfast and supper,” said the single mother, clutching her youngest child, a toddler, close to her chest. “There are about three kilograms left in the bag. So I don’t know what will happen after.

“We are going to die of hunger before this virus even kills us,” she added.

We are trying to take care of as many people as possible without caring about the numbers, already more than 100 kilo grams of maize flour and beans have been distributed across the four slum communities that we serve. The campaign is still running to feed the children and the 

Oct 2, 2020

School, safe space for girls.

Many young girls today are battling with the "absence" of school. A community had been recently discovered to be every fundamental in the well being of a child.

 

Staying at home has posed a great deal of challenges for families by affecting relationships between children and parents, house work "fights" and managing idle time.

Working young girls during this period has uncovered a huge gap in parenting and social priorities. Teenage girls are forced to stay home since their surrounding neighborhoods are considered unsafe. This has subjected many to a boring and similar routine each day which may negatively impact on their behavior, pro activity and confidence.

 

We are working to empower children, girls beyond "class" learning and enable then to creatively learn outside the school environment.

Education, combined with good health and economic empowerment, are the game changers for girls and women. When girls stay in school and have access to sexual and reproductive health care, they have better negotiating power within their families, can decide for themselves whether and when to have children, can pursue careers of their choosing, and can contribute to their communities and societies. It a virtuous circle and entire families, communities, and nations benefit from safe schools. 

It is up to all of us around the world to take a stand and end violence against girls.

 
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