COVID-19  Uganda Project #46938

Helping KMS through COVID-19 and Lockdown

by Kampala Music School
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Helping KMS through COVID-19 and Lockdown
Helping KMS through COVID-19 and Lockdown
Helping KMS through COVID-19 and Lockdown
Helping KMS through COVID-19 and Lockdown
Helping KMS through COVID-19 and Lockdown
Helping KMS through COVID-19 and Lockdown
Helping KMS through COVID-19 and Lockdown
Helping KMS through COVID-19 and Lockdown
Helping KMS through COVID-19 and Lockdown
Helping KMS through COVID-19 and Lockdown
Helping KMS through COVID-19 and Lockdown
Helping KMS through COVID-19 and Lockdown
Helping KMS through COVID-19 and Lockdown
Joy in singing lesson
Joy in singing lesson

Kampala Music School was finally able to reopen on the 5th of January and this brought much joy. The staff were happy to be working at least some more of the time in the office. COVID-19 SOPs bring a different flavour to it all with some of the school not able to be used for lessons due to social distancing requirements.

“I cannot wait for us to reopen and start learning again. I have not been able to play on a real piano in this period”  Benjamin, one of the bursary students, had been quoted as saying.

About 100 students out of the 400 we had previously, have returned to learning with 70 of these on-site. Teachers are now able to do some ensemble work with their students, something almost impossible to do on the online forums. The pandemic still ongoing and it will be a little while before Kampala Music School will be fully functional as before.

Lessons now happen both online for those that can manage it and now on site. Capacity is still low and some students are still worried about coming on-site and don’t have the capability of studying remotely. However, those studying, are really enjoying the experience of live music-making again. Some of the ensembles have even started to meet again, in restricted numbers but great to make music together again.

For the administrative staff, "we had forgotten what it feels like to work, surrounded by the sounds of music. This is so much better, I feel like I'm working in a music school again."

COVID 19 had some unintended consequences like a sharp increase in travel costs by public means which has created a block for some of the bursary students, and with our restrictions in funding at the moment, we are not able to immediately assist.

Outreach schools are still not open and this is affecting the learning of our students out there as access to lessons is still problematic as we try and work to get solutions to this.

The future, though, for the first time in months, has a bit of a positive outlook about it, but we continue to pray and also thank you all for your support thus far and hope that you continue to walk this journey. More is needed to get back to teaching levels as before and to reach more students, and continue to develop talents, and change lives.

Front Desk Staff ready to receive visitors
Front Desk Staff ready to receive visitors
Handwashing at the gate
Handwashing at the gate
Immaculate sings in her class
Immaculate sings in her class
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Sheila at her desk
Sheila at her desk

We had hoped that Kampala Music School would re-open in September due to the lifting of several of the restrictions, however this was not possible due to some challenges from local authorities Whilst the administrative staff were able to work in a somewhat limited capacity, pupils still could not attend lessons on site. Thus, lessons have continued online for the few who could, but a many people were unable to do this. However there has been an increase in online students such that we now had 20% of our regular student number being able to have lessons.

The funds raised have meant that hardware items could be purchased enabling us to provide online lessons on-site and meant that KMS could continue to run in a reduced fashion at about 50% of all costs for this period.

We are hoping to reopen at the beginning of January 2021, at the time of publishing this report and all Staff, teachers and clients are looking forward to it:

“I cannot wait for us to reopen and start learning again. I have not been able to play on a real piano in this period” said Benjamin, one of the bursary students. Teachers are also hoping that they will now be able to do some ensemble work with their students, something almost impossible to do on the online forums.

Whilst this opening will begin the process of starting to get back to normal, it is clear that with the pandemic still raging, and with Uganda going into an election season, it will be a little while before Kampala Music School will be fully functional as before.

The future, though, for the first time in months, has a bit of a positive outlook about it and we thank you for your ongoing support. 

Assumpta at her desk
Assumpta at her desk
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Assumpta the Accountant at work
Assumpta the Accountant at work

Supporting KMS COVID

With the offices closing on March 24th there as huge uncertainty for teachers and students alike. It was initially for a 30 day period. But then that kept getting extended and looking at the trends around the world, this was going to be no different.

With all activity on campus stopped, the first concern was how we were going to get lessons to keep going. We had a big challenge of quickly swapping over to online teaching, and in the nick of time, we were able to get a few computers for this.

The funds raised so far have enabled us to keep the staff going while also supporting the purchase of a few hardware items that would enable online lessons to be taught including laptops, routers. These funds also helped KMS to continue running in a reduced fashion about 50% of all costs in this period.

Staff members were initially homebound, but as restrictions have slowly been lifted, have come back into office a few days per week. Teaching is still largely restricted and the overall shut down is now lingering on much longer than thought, as the expectation as that we would reopen in September. At the time of writing, no word has come yet from the government about reopening of physical school which renders more strife to our current challenge.

Teachers have been quoted as saying,” the ability to teach online has been helpful, and convenient, but for some of our colleagues, this has not been an option for a variety of reasons.” There remain some who still cannot teach, though this is being addressed bit by bit.” Lessons continue to be a fraction of normal with a few new signups.

We are thankful for the support thus far from you and we ask you to share our story with others so as to garner more support to help us continue to achieve what we set out to do, which is developing talent and changing lives, ensuring that all talent, great and small, gets the best possible chance to be nurtured. We hope to continue to work towards that even though the times are hard.

Sheilla Working on an administrative report
Sheilla Working on an administrative report
JOvia working to link up Teachers and students
JOvia working to link up Teachers and students
Teacher George delivering an online guitar lesson
Teacher George delivering an online guitar lesson
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Organization Information

Kampala Music School

Location: Kampala - Uganda
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @KampalaMusicScl
Project Leader:
Julia Downing
Prof
Kampala, Uganda
$25,261 raised of $40,000 goal
 
114 donations
$14,739 to go
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