Help Keep 15 Aspiring Ugandan Girls in School

by Outreach Uganda
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Help Keep 15 Aspiring Ugandan Girls in School
Help Keep 15 Aspiring Ugandan Girls in School
Help Keep 15 Aspiring Ugandan Girls in School
Help Keep 15 Aspiring Ugandan Girls in School
Help Keep 15 Aspiring Ugandan Girls in School
Help Keep 15 Aspiring Ugandan Girls in School
Help Keep 15 Aspiring Ugandan Girls in School
Help Keep 15 Aspiring Ugandan Girls in School
Help Keep 15 Aspiring Ugandan Girls in School
Help Keep 15 Aspiring Ugandan Girls in School
Help Keep 15 Aspiring Ugandan Girls in School
Help Keep 15 Aspiring Ugandan Girls in School
Help Keep 15 Aspiring Ugandan Girls in School
6th Grade Girls: Back to School Being Safe w/Masks
6th Grade Girls: Back to School Being Safe w/Masks

We're excited that our Agwata school 6th graders have been back in school since October!

In October, the Ugandan government allowed students in "candidate classes" to go back to school and begin a time of intensive study for their year-end national exams which are now scheduled for late March 2021.

"Candidate classes" means that 6th, 10th and 12th grade students as well as university and vocational students in their final year can go back to classes. We hope that within the next month or two more if not all students will be back in school.  It is extremely difficult for young students especially, to study from printed materials at home.

Currently, there are 44 6th graders boarding at the Agwata school. Twenty-five of these students are girls. They are studying hard to make up for five missed months of school. We also have quite a few sponsored students in 10th and 12th grade and even university that are back in school now.

This is hugely good and everyone is glad to see girls back in school. We are concerned that when they are out of school, they may become overburdened with farming and housework and loose their focus. Or worse, go astray and become pregnant.  At least with our 6th graders, this has not been the case. All but one returned back to school.

That is why, as we mentioned in our prior letters to you, we have been meeting with the girls periodically to help keep them motivated and focused on schooling and their goals in life.  We will continue to do this until everyone is back in school.

We thank you for your continued interest and support of our project during these difficult times. It makes a huge differene! Your support helps us make sure more girls stay in school and remain focused on their goals.

We are very grateful!

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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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Happy School Girls: You Help Support Scovia at rt
Happy School Girls: You Help Support Scovia at rt

i was in Uganda from mid-February to mid-March and want to update you about the status of our older girls in school, the very girls this project is helping to support!  The good news is the Uganda school year got off to a good start in February.  I, along with two other volunteers visited many of the secondary students at the schools where they board.  I've included a photo of one visit at the very end of February.  This gave us the opportunity to talk with the girls one on one to see how they liked school as well as to provide encouragement to the girls.

Four days after I  flew back to the U.S.,.Uganda's president sent all students home from school for 30 days as well as undertook other measures, all aimed at stopping the coronavirus from spreading within Uganda.  As of April 8th, there are 53 reported coronaivrus cases in Uganda with zero deaths reported. We hope that containment efforts continue to be successful.

According to Uganda school officials, they currently expect the school year to progress with students returning to school at some point and making up for missed school days by shortening or eliminating the two three-week term breaks and/or extending the school year into December.  We are operating under this understanding that students are just home for an earlier break than normal but will go back in May (or maybe June) depending on what happens.

In the meantime, we are helping the northern Agwata community where many of our students live. The clinic is making preparations to better withstand any health issues the community might face during the upcoming rainy season (May and June). So whether it might be increased cases of malaria, pneumonia or coronavirus, we are helping the community's clinic workers prepare to the extent we have funds available for this. This in turn will better support our students who are home on break and who depend on the local clinic for their health care.

We appreciate your continued support of keeping older secondary (7th to 12th grade) girls in school until we locate additional sponsorship and scholarship supporters for them. We also appreciate your continued support during this time as the whole world waits for the coronavirus crisis to pass so that we can return to a new normal. And especially importantly, so that our girls can return to school!

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Patricia is excited to go to 7th grade. Thank you!
Patricia is excited to go to 7th grade. Thank you!

Tomorrow starts the new Uganda school year. We've exiciting news about the girls from Agwata village.  In 2019 the school had the largest graduating class of girls (13) and they performed the best ever on their national exams that they took last November. In fact, this is the first time ever that one of our girls scored in the top division on the national exams.

We've got more good news--the incoming 6th grade class this year is the largest ever at 40 students with 25 girls, almost double our 2019 girl poopulation.  What a contrast to 2011 when we first began working in Agwata village and there were no girls in 6th grade!

But with all this good news comes challenges. We have found lots of sponsors for these girls but more sponsors are needed.  As we continue to look for sponsors, we remain very grateful to this GlobalGiving project for providing funding to plug the difference and allow additional girls to begin the school year tomorrow even if they have no long term sponsor.

You are helping girls like Patricia in this photo who does not yet have a sponsor but wants to go to 7th grade so she can eventually become a nurse.  She's extremely hard working and did well on her year-end exams.

And, as we mentioned in our last report, we want Patricia to achieve her dreams but we also know that (based on UN statistics):

Girls who complete secondary school (7th to 12th grade) will most likely: 

  • Be 60% more likely to find work
  • Be 66% less likely to marry at a young age
  • Be 60% less likely to have children before she reaches age 18
  • Be 50% less likely that any of her children will die before age 5 when she becomes a mother herself
  • Be 70% less likely to die in child birth

Thank you for helping Patricia and other girls like her start or continue on the path of completing secondary school! It's a huge gift to them and we couldn't do it without you!

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Adeno, a Sponsored Student Since 2008
Adeno, a Sponsored Student Since 2008

I’d like to introduce you to Adeno so you can see first hand, how your donations are impacting girls' lives. Adeno joined our sponsorship program very early in 2008 when she was still in primary school. She is very thankful to her sponsors that she has had this opportunity in her life.

Adeno comes from a large family including her parents. Her mother is one of the women artisans in our Jinja craft group. Her family lives in a single rented room in one of the worst Jinja slums (her home is shown in the 3rd photo). Adeno attended the nearby government primary school. Even that would have been impossible without her participating in our sponsorship program.

When younger, she dreamed of being a teacher. But when she finished 10th grade, she decided to branch to vocational school. She even received a scholarship for her tuition to join a catering course. Sponsorship means she could board at the school where she could focus totally on her studies.  She excelled in her studies.

This past summer she decided to pursue a two year associate’s degree course in travel and tourism. During her 2 month break from school, she joined us in Agwata village for four weeks as our paid chef. She started her degree course in September thanks to continued support from Outreach Uganda’s child sponsorship program.

This may not seem extraordinary. But comparing Adeno to other girls who grew up in the same slums, most are married with a couple of children. They have no means to support themselves or their families and no prospects for a future.

Because Adeno has completed 4 years of secondary school and will most likely complete 2 more years of schooling, we know that statistically per the UN:

  • She is 60% more likely to find work
  • She is 66% less likely to marry at a young age
  • She is 60% less likely to have children before she reaches age 18
  • When she becomes a mother, it is 50% less likely that any of her children will die before age 5
  • She is 70% less likely to die in child birth

Thank you for your support to enable more girls like Adeno to enter our sponsorship program and develop into hopeful young women like Adeno.

 

 

Adeno Excited to Gain Experience in Catering Field
Adeno Excited to Gain Experience in Catering Field
Adeno's Home Where She Grew Up in the Slums
Adeno's Home Where She Grew Up in the Slums

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Organization Information

Outreach Uganda

Location: Highlands Ranch, CO - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @outreachuganda
Project Leader:
Carol Davis
Highlands Ranch, CO United States
$13,145 raised of $15,000 goal
 
242 donations
$1,855 to go
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