Children at School
New Report on PPDR Uganda Refugee Child Care Programme
from May to end of July 2013
This programme started in 2009 and together with you (donors) through our partner GlobalGiving we have been able to help refugees children in Uganda and this has protected many each year. You can view our new video on: http://youtu.be/Bff_6yeRu2A
We managed to pay for the space and classrooms rent for the months of March, April, and May 2013, we have also managed to offer small motivation allowances to the teachers but not on regular basis.
We bought four (4) blackboards, 30 benches and a variety of books both for the students and the teachers. Currently the school has the national curriculum and other teaching aid which are used here in Uganda.
Our teachers attended a one day training which was organized by Xavier Project and have received twice others teachers from different schools to discuss and guide them on the Uganda Education System,
Both refugee and other vulnerable children in the communities have increased day to day and this has offered a protection to the most vulnerable who could have been abused if they were left at home or on the streets.
PPDR Uganda advocacy team is well represented in all the discussions which are taking place here in Uganda on refugee education issues and which involve the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the Uganda Government and other NGOs. Most of the PPDR Uganda recommendations on the Education of refugee children have been taken into consideration for a new policy which will come out on the education of refugee children.
The Xavier Project has done a great job at PPDR Uganda by helping children with reading exercises every Tuesday so that children can pick up and develop the reading culture.
The staff members who are involved in education have been so much hard working and committed to the maximum to ensure the programme runs well.
Despite these positive and encouraging signals which are visible at PPDR Uganda, currently the refugee child care programme is facing number of challenges:
We have not been able to pay regularly and on time the rent for school space, as per now we have not yet paid for the space from June, July and now August 2013.
Our teachers are not having allowances and sometimes when they are sick, the school cannot even offer the help they need. In classes they don’t have a table for their documents and no chair to sit on. And teachers have not received regular trainings.
Children have increased in numbers especially these days because of high influx of new refugees from the East parts of the Democratic Republic of Congo and yet since these few months we have not yet received any funds to put in place the basic necessities as consequence some children are sitting on the floor in classes.
We have been facing the challenge of pulling the UNHCR closer to us in this programme so that we can work together, UNHCR is not yet cooperative.
We are still facing the challenge of children getting sick while at school and in some cases they really don’t have anyone at home to look after them, especially the unaccompanied minors and those from poorest families. Children cannot have access to clean water while at school because we have not yet managed to finish the project of school canteen and we have not yet managed to construct more latrines.
Despite the above mentioned challenges and the success we have achieved there is still plenty of opportunities ahead of us which we can maximize.
The high motivation of refugee teachers who are eager to move forward amidst the challenges faced by refugee children, their endurance and sense of sacrifice is a part which we can work on to make things better, in other words the human resource is there.
PPDR Uganda is the first organization and the leading organization in Uganda to offer this form of education to refugees and this will help us to guide and partner with other actors in the refugee education sector in the future.
PPDR Uganda advocacy team can push for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to start implementing its Education Strategic Plan for the year 2013 – 2016 which will help many refugee children to benefit from this plan.
We have the children and the organization is strategically located at the center of the areas which are mostly concentrated areas for refugees in Kampala, so this makes children to easily access the offices for education.
In terms of contributions or donations, we are now permanently on Global Giving site which makes us get funds from the donors and which goes directly to project.
This programme is facing the following threats:
The failure to pay regularly and on time for the office/Space rent will push the landlord to terminate the tenancy agreement with us,
The failure to offer minimum allowances to the teachers and other staff members who are involved in the education programme will demotivate many among them and this will make us loose the experienced personnel.
The lack of adequate and convenience furniture in classes such as desks, tables, blackboards many other equipment which will help us to create a conducive learning environment may discourage some children form coming to school.
The inability to respond to specific needs of particular refugee and needy children may wound our desire to offer education to all refugee children especially the most vulnerable.
So far we have discovered that it is possible to offer education to refugee children, currently all actors in the refugee education have seen that through this initiative at PPDR, and this was done in conjunction between PPDR Uganda and you who are currently our donors, especially those who have sacrificed their little money for this idea.
We currently need more efforts from our donors so that we can solve the challenges we are facing. Most of the challenges are caused by the limited funds which can be solved in two ways. More commitment from the donors and more donors coming in and then PPDR Uganda should put in place small income generating activities to help the school.
Lastly we have also managed to produce every month our E-News Letter, could you be interested to subscribe send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org , you can also join us on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Peopleforpeacedefenserights
Remember also the Global Giving Open Challenge in September and the Bonus Day in October 2013, these are the best ways you can donate to our projects on GlobalGiving.
May God Bless you all
Kulihoshi Musikami Pecos
Children during a reading exercise