A recipient at Bakhita Primary School May 2015
The people of Uganda are known for their generosity. When I was in Uganda, despite their poverty, the villagers were most generous to me. I was given plots of land, looms of Ugandan fabric, a hand-made dress, skirt, gifts for my family. I was always a celebrated guest often going to a village home where I would be fed until I was so full I was gagging. Villagers walked for hours to bring me gifts. These gifts were given from what they did not have.
Similarly, the Ugandans have been most generous to refugees. It’s now a famous picture. A three-year-old Syrian child, Aylan Kurdi, appears to be sleeping on a beach. Instead, he has perished in a perilous journey from Syria to Europe. The picture has caused outrage and provoked an international response. Long before innocent Aylan washed ashore on a Turkish beach, the Katulikire area welcomed over 12,000 South Sudanese refugees to their community and schools over the past 2 years. UNICEF estimates 60 to 100 new refugees are arriving in Katulikire every day. The goings on in South Sudan are similar to those in Syria. War, rape, slavery, child soliders. What if Uganda, a country struggling with great poverty of its own, had decided it did not have the resources to allow the most poor and vulnerable, built fences, and closed its borders? Instead, they were welcomed into Katulikire where they attend the free, public schools. Attendance is swelling. Malaria season is coming. We are trying to help these poor, vulnerable refugees prepare for malaria by continuing our distributions to the approximately 2,000 refugee and Ugandan students at Chanrom/Bidong Primary School, but we do not have enough money. To make this distribution possible, we would require an additional $5,000 USD. We would appreciate any help.
The refugees face numerous, seemingly insurmountable problems. It’s difficult to know where to start. I believe the lowest cost, most effective intervention is working with malaria prevention. Malaria kills, stifles education, cripples the workforce, and drains financial resources. I could not be more grateful for your generosity to my friends in Uganda. I know that you have many needs, see many needs and your sacrifice may not be so different from that of my friends in Katulikire who did my hair, hung beads around my neck, prepared a rabbit, scaled trees to pick fruits and watched proudly, joyously, but hungrily as I ate because there was not enough to go around.
If you are able to help us protect the children of Chanrom/Bidong Primary School, $5 purchases a net for a student. We have funding for about the first 1000 students. We could not be more grateful for any help supporting the next 1000 students.