Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls

by The River Fund
Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls
Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls
Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls
Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls
Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls
Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls
Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls
Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls
Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls
Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls
Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls
Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls
Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls
Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls
Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls
Feed, Educate, Empower Acholi Women and Girls

ACTIVITY REPORT FOR 1ST QUARTER 2019

INTRODUCTION

This is the first quarter report of 2019 for the project titled: Feed, Educate and Empower Women of Acholi Region sponsored by GlobalGiving.

The project is implemented by River Fund HIV/AIDS Family Support Women Association a registered Community Based Organization located in Kitgum district, Northern Uganda. The association founded in 2007 by a group of motivated and committed women, aims at improving the quality of life of persons infected and affected by HIV/AIDS and life threatening diseases, sponsorship and mentorship of vulnerable girls in schools.

Feed Educate Empower Women of Acholi has 3 target beneficiaries/components:

  • Educational sponsorship and mentorship to vulnerable school girls
  • Long term survival skills training and economic empowerment for rural women and families infected and affected by HIV/AIDS
  • Supporting families of children with nodding syndrome

The River Fund USA through its executive Director provide Leadership to the project. 

Support to families of children with nodding syndrome

The nodding syndrome is a condition which first came to the notice of the authorities in 2009 as people of northern Uganda returned homes after years of living in squalid internally displaced people’s camps (IDPs) due to more than 20 years of the LRA war. The condition derives its name from its characteristic symptoms of head nodding often triggered by presence of food or exposure to cold. NS affects mainly children and is condition which leads to stunted growth, seizures, body weakness and emaciations.

Apart from the health consequences, families of victims suffer trauma with some turning to alcohol as coping mechanism. A lot of productive time is spent on minding the children from wandering, off getting drowned in rivers/ponds or falling in fires.

Women bear the heaviest burden of the disease as they struggle to provide food, and care for the children and the entire households.

The Feed Educate and Empower Women and Girls of Acholi project provide much needed food and non food items and psychosocial support to victims their families in Okidi Parish, Labongo Amida sub county, Kitgum district. A total of 34 households are benefiting from the project with 51 children. On an average there are 7 persons per household. This translates to 238 people receiving support under the project. It should be noted that this is only a small portion of victims since it is estimated by authorities that there are about 535 victims in the area of Okidi and neighboring parish of Tumangur.

Activities carried out this quarter;

  • Distribution of food and non food items

A total of 34 households received the following items each

Posho                   25kgs

Beans                    6kg

Cooking oil           3litres

Sugar                   5kg

Salt                      5packets                                                                                      

Silverfish              2 basins

Washing soap        5bars

 

  • Distribution of sanitary pads     

3 packets of sanitary pads were provided each to 16 girls

  • Group Counseling

One session of group counseling was conducted for 43 parents and caregivers, discussing challenges and how to overcome them and generally showing them that out there, are people who care.

Challenges

  1. On average the number of people per household is 7, making food ration provided small
  2. The nodding syndrome is a disease which still has no cure. The affected children may grow in to adults but will still remain dependants on their parents.
  3. The districts are facing a prolonged dry season and this has led to food scarcity.

Observations and recommendations                 

  1. Increase food ratio of funding permits
  2. Introduce income generating activities to parents and caregivers, things which they can do within their compounds to supplement the aid they receive

Conclusion

The general physical appearance of the children have improved and we thank the donors of GlobalGiving and The River Fund USA for their continued support

Girls’ Education - Activities carried out

  • Mentoring girls

A mentorship program where each girl under sponsorship has a mentor has been initiated. The mentors are drawn from members of the association. Mentors act as role model, guide and counsel. The girls on their studies and personal issues, two visits to the school took place this quarter

The performances of the girls are good except at Kitgum Comprehensive College who is doing poorly

  • Payments of school fees.

Currently there are 12 girls under sponsorship in the following schools;

St. Bakhita Secondary School-5 girls all in S.3                                                                         

Y.Y.Okot Girls’ Memorial; School-5 girls all in S.4

Kitgum Comprehensive College-2 girls in S.4

School fees have been paid for all the 12 girls

  • Distribution of sanitary towels:

Sanitary pads were distributed to all the 12 girls each receiving 3 packets. This supports is to enable girls keep hygiene and reduced on absence from classes.

Challenges identified:

1)     Failure by some parents to meet their contributions

2)     Increase amount of school fees.

3)     Inadequate skills in computer and documentation.

Future Plans and Recommendation

  • Hold 2 life skills training sessions for the girls
  • Hold a parents’ meeting to help parents play their roles more effectively
  • Make home visits to the girls who are not doing so well to understand their home environment.
  • Build capacity of members in computer literacy, documentation and reporting 

Conclusion

Performances of the girls are encouraging and we hope they keep it up. For the one ot to lagging behind special efforts will be made to help them pull up. We thank GlobalGiving and The River Fund for their support.

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RIVER FUND HIV/AIDS FAMILY SUPPORT WOMEN

ASSOCIATION KITGUM

SUBJECT: ACTIVITY REPORT FOR 4TH QUARTER OCTOBER- DECEMBER 2018

PROJECT NAME: GIRL EDUCATION SPONSORSHIP

SUBMITTED TO: EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, THE RIVER FUND USA

SUBMITTED: MARGARET ACAYO

PROGRAM COORDINATOR

 Introduction

River Fund HIV/AIDS Family Support Women’s Association is an organization working to provide psychosocial and other support and care to women and girls and their families infected and affected by HIVAIDS, victims of nodding syndrome disease and promote the education of girls.

The association was established in 2007 by a group of thirty women and is registered as a community based organization ( CBO) with Kitgum District Local Government. The association is administered through an executive committee of 9 women assisted by a program coordinator.

Current Project implemented by the women are:

  • The Girls Education Sponsorship.
  • Support To Nodding Syndrome Disease Children

These projects are funded by GlobalGiving and The River Fund a charity organization based in the USA.

  1. The Girls Sponsorship Projects

Beneficiaries of these project are needy but bright girls from poor households, these infected and effected by HIV/AIDs, females heated households and orphans .

There are 12 secondary schools girls under sponsorship located in 3 schools in Kitgum district as follows:

  • St Bakhita Secondary School 5 girls
  • Y.Y Okot Memorial Secondary School- 5 girls
  • Kitgum Comprehensive College-2 girls.

 

  1. Activities carried out in the 4th quarter.
  • School Visits: Each of the 12 girls is mentored by volunteer member of the women association. Each of the mentors paid 2 visits to the schools at the beginning and towards close of 3rd term.

the purpose of these visits  are to check that the students had reported back , check their performance for the last term and discuss with them the challenges they may be facing and offer counseling on personal problems.

Opportunities are also taken to meet class teachers of these girls to get their feed backs.

  • Payments of Schools Fees:

Fees were paid for 12 girls ( 5 at St. Bakhita , 5 Y.Y Okot Memorial Secondary School   and 2 at Comprehensive College.

  • Distribution of Sanitary towels:

Sanitary Pads were distributed to all the 12 girls each receiving 3 packets. This supports is to enable girls keep hygiene and reduced on absence from classes.

  • Emerging Issue:
  • Some of the girls who completed their “O” level would like to be sponsored for courses that can help them earn a living.

Challenges:

  • Some parent’s especially female headed households are finding if difficult to meet their obligations toward their daughters.
  • Most of the girls are finding science subjects difficult

Recommendations:

  • Help parents identify suitable sources of livelihoods.
  • Build capacity of parents on financial literacy.
  • Work with mentors and teachers to see how girls can be assisted to improve on weak points especially science subjects.

  

RIVER FUND HIV/AIDS FAMILY SUPPORT WOMEN

ASSOCIATION KITGUM

SUBJECT: ACTIVITY REPORT FOR 4TH QUARTER OCTOBER- DECEMBER 2018

PROJECT NAME: SUPPORT TO OKIDI NODDING SYNDROME CHILDREN

SUBMITTED TO: EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, THE RIVER FUND USA

SUBMITTED: MARGARET ACAYO

PROGRAM COORDINATOR

 Introduction:

River Fund HIV/AIDS Family Support Women Association with financial aid from GlobalGiving and The River Fund USA provide food and nonfood items to children and households suffering from the nodding disease syndrome.  They also carryout home visits and counselling for parent and care givers.

 The children and their families come from the 3 villages of Awere, Kampala Anyuka and Okidi Central. In total there were 35 households being supported but now there are 34. One of the severely disabled girl has been transferred to children’s a home by her parents.

  1. Activities carried:

Support Visits:

In order to encourage the families to take heart, keep hope alive and take good care of the children, members on rotational basis visited Okidi project site to offer counselling and interact with the children and parents. Three such visits were carried out by members.

  • Meeting with parents and care givers took place on 25/11/2018 .This was to check on government contribution to NS victims. After a long period of silence government has come out to extend supports to NS victims by contributions items such as Posho, beans, blankets and cattle to a few households.
  • Food and nonfood items Distribution

Christmas gifts to supplement what government had given, the project made on 24/12/2018 provided the following items and quantities distributed to each of the 35 households were as follows:

  • Rice                   5kgs
  • sugar                 3kgs
  • Blue Soap          5 bars
  • Sanitary Pads    2packets each for 16 girls

Emerging Issues:-

  • What should be the role and the contribution of the project in view of government intervention
  • Should project identify other needy areas.
  • Government to rescreen victims to isolate those suffering from epilepsy rather than nodding syndrome
  • Sustainability: How families should be assisted to should to stand their feet.

Challenges: Stigma and isolation of some of the children by parents and care givers exist in some homes.

  • Some of the children are difficult and become aggressive if their parents try to restrain them. There is a tendency of wandering off by victims.

Conclusion: and Recommendations:

Throughout the year there has been no reported death. This can be attributed to regular supplies of food. The parents/ caregivers should also be commended for adhere to medical advice.

As we move into the new year the executive committee should hold a project review meeting to look at challenges and how best to overcome them.

The Executive Directorthe Rivers Fund, USA should also pay a visit to Kitgum and share with members on best practices.

More regular home visit and counselling for severely affected households e.g. Families with 2-3 child victims and children disabled by the disease.

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Students at YY Okot Memorial College
Students at YY Okot Memorial College

INTRODUCTION

The girl child education project in Kitgum District is funded by The River fund. The project is implemented by River fund HIV IDS support women association, a CBO based in Kitgum district Northern Uganda. The women association envisions and just and caring society where people yearn to help one another. The association has been working hand in hand with the RIVER Fund USA, the body that has the values of compassion sharing and love

Payment of school fees:

Previously the project was sponsoring 11girls one additional an orphan was enrolled after an appeal by her school bring to 12.

All school dues for these girls have been completed. Currently the girls are located as follows

  • Kitgum comprehensive college ……………………2 girls
  • YY Okot Memorial college    ………………………5 girls
  • St. Bakhita Secondary School ………………………5 girls

Distribution of sanitary pads:

Sanitary pads are essential items needed to aid girls not to miss class during menstruation. Each of the 12girls was thus provided with 4packets each.

Mentoring Girls:

The 10girls at St. Bakhita and YY Okot Memorial College each has mentors who are members of the women association at Kitgum comprehensive college, the 2girls share one mentor

Only one mentorship visit was made to each of the school instead of the usual three.

This was due to congested calendars. Schools were busy with the sport, drama and essay writing competitions.

Mentors counsel and guide girls both on personal and academic matters as well as encouraging them to work hard and aim higher.

Activities carried out.

Life skills training for the girls due to shortage of funds, was not conducted

Challenges

  • Some of the sponsored girls who have completed their secondary schooling and would like to join treasury institution are approaching the association
  • Gaps in knowledge and skills of the mentors. While all members of the association have been trained in counseling, only one person has undergone training in mentoring

 Recommendation

Should funding be available in future, girls could be helped to undertake post-secondary education which leads to acquisition of employable skills.

Conclusion

On my own behalf and that of the executive committee and the women association I wish to call for blessings on all the hands that give Global Giving and The River Fund.      

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RIVER FUND HIV/AIDS FAMILY SUPPORT WOMEN ASSOCIATION.KITGUM

 

 

SUBJECT: ACTIVITY REPORT FOR 2ND QUARTER APRIL- JUNE 2018.

SUBMITTED TO: EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, THE RIVER FUND USA

SUBMITTED BY: MARGARET ACAYO, PROGRAM COORDINATOR

Date:              14/7/2018

Project Name: Feed Educate and Empower Women and Girls of Northern Uganda

1. Introduction

 

River Fund HIV/AIDS Family Support Women’s Association is an organization working to provide psychosocial and other support and care to women and girls and their families infected and affected by HIVAIDS and other needy people.

Under the Feed Educate and Empower Acholi Women and Girls Project. Funded by Global Giving and The River fund, a USA based Charity organization, the association implement   two projects, namely the Girls child Education project and support to Nodding Syndrome children.

2. Working Teams

In order to effectively carry out its roles the association has instituted 2 task forces or teams one responsible for mentoring school girls. There are11 members on the first teamAnother second teams is responsible for outreach activities in Okidi. There are 9 members who work on rotational basi

3. Activities Carried out: In this Quarter:
3.1. Girl Education Project
• The target for enrollment of girls this year was 20: however due to funding shortage 
• currently 11 girls are being sponsored 4 are on waiting list
• Mentoring Girlsmembers of the association carry out one on one mentoring for the girls. 
• In this quarter 2 mentoring visits made the main focus ofthe visits are to check on academic performancesdiscuss and find the solutions problem girls may be fasting 

Girls with there mentors

• Payment of school FeesFunding has been received and payment of school fees in progress.
• Distribution of sanitary towels: Non were distributed this quarter since what was received were sufficient up to June new supplies will be made July 

 

• Parent Meetinga meeting with Parents and Guardant of Girls took place in May just before the beginning of second term it was aim of uncharged parents to visit their daughters to meet some basic need which project is not providing.

 

Parents meeting at Christ The King

 

3.2. Support to Okidi Nodding Syndrome Children:

The women Association with financial aid from The RiverFund and Global Giving also provide food and nonfood items to children and households suffering from the nodding disease syndrome.  The children and their families are spread over 3 villages, 

 

• Support Visits: there are 9 members’ charged with responsibilities to conduct monthly outreach activities in Okidi Project site. Two support Visit where made this quarter 

• Food and Nonfood Items distribution

The distribution were carry out twice this quarter early April and Mid-June as follows  

  

.Food Distribution at Okidi

 

ItemQuantity/Month 

April June

Posho25kgs25kgs

Sliver Fish 1basin-

Beans5kgs 8kgs

Sugar5kgs-

Salt4packets-

Cooking Oil 3litres  1 liters 

Soap 5 bars2bars

Sanitary Pad 4packets each 23Gils-

Construction of learning Centre: - construction of the wall is doneremaining thatching of the roof.

4. Emerging Issues:

• There is need to collect household data on each of the children for equitable distributions of supplies 
• -Non formal Education for both girls and boys Victims 
• -Desire by Norbouring parents for their children to be registered in center 
5. Challenges:
• Rising Price on school fees and Food Items
• Clothing and there beddings for the children.
• Stigmatizations of the Children by community and even families.

 

Conclusion

Much appreciation to Executive Director of The River Fund USA and Global Giving for their state fast support to the women and girls of Kitgum and Northern Uganda. Appreciation also extended to the Executive and membersof River Fund Association Kitgum for their commitment which has made easy the work of program co-coordinator.

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School visits at Vignato Secondary School Kitgum
School visits at Vignato Secondary School Kitgum

RIVER FUND HIV/AIDS FAMILY SUPPORT WOMEN ASSOCIATION.KITGUM

Women and Girls

1)     Introduction

River Fund HIV/AIDS Family Support Women’s Association is an organization working to provide psychosocial and other support and care to women and girls and their families infected and affected by HIVAIDS and other needy people.

The association was established in 2007 by a group of thirty women and is registered as a community based organization (CBO) with Kitgum District Local Government.

 2)     Administration

The Association is administered through an Executive Committee composed of nine (9) members assisted by a Program Coordinator who is a volunteer and member of the Association.

The newly elected committee is composed of;

  1. Hellen          Chairperson
  2. Hida             Vice Chairperson
  3. Maliam         Treasurer
  4. Grace           Secretary
  5. Clara             Assistant Secretary
  6. Karmela        Member
  7. Florence               “
  8. Florence               “
  9. Beatrice                “

 Margaret                 Program Coordinator

A general meeting is held quarterly for all members to update them and plan for new activities. Members also act as volunteers in the implementation of activities since the group at the moment does not have capacity to pay full time staff.

3)     Planned activities for 1st quarter, January to March 2018

  • Identification of new beneficiaries
  • Payment of school fees
  • Provision of scholastic and sanitary materials
  • Supply of food and non-food items
  • Capacity building training for mentors
  • Life skills training for girls

4)     Activities carried out:

Girls Education

School Visits.

No new beneficiaries have been added pending receipt of additional funding. However, members of the Executive Committee visited the following schools hosting girls under sponsorship

  • St. Bakhita Secondary School with 5 girls
  • Msgr Vignato Secondary School – 4 girls
  • Kitgum Comprehensive College -2 girls

The purpose of these visits were to check that the students had reported back, check their performance for the last term and find out any challenges they may be facing.

Payments of schools fees

Fees were paid for 9 girls (5 at St. Bakhita,. 4 Vignato). Fees for the 2 girls at Kitgum Comprehensive College were settled by the parents.

Distribution of sanitary towels:

Sanitary Pads were distributed to all the 9 girls each receiving 4 packets.  This support is to enable girls keep hygiene and reduced on absences from classes.

Emerging issues:

1)     At Vignato Secondary School the girls reported that they were not attending lessons in Biology, Chemistry and Physics due to absence of those teachers (this was 2 weeks after opening of term)

2)     Unclear terms and conditions for the school based mentors.

Future plans and recommendations

  • Termly mentoring to the girls by members of the association.
  • Drafting a mentoring guidelines to ensure standards
  • Review of criteria for selection of girls to be sponsored.
  • Enroll more girls once additional funds are received
  • Hold a meeting with parents whose children are studying at Msgr Vignato

Lamola HIV/AIDS Group

Needs assessment.

A field visit was made to this group by a member of the executive to meet and discuss with them their plans for the new planting season and types of seeds and quantities they require.

Challenges faced in the implementation of activities.

  1. Delay by the bank to change to the new signatories which also hindered speedy implementation of activities 
  2. Delayed hand over to new executive which created an information gap

Conclusion and recommendation.

This has been a learning period for the new office bearers. They have also shown zeal and commitment and should be commended for all the efforts put in to implement activities. To further improve on effectiveness and efficiency it may be necessary to organize capacity building training for the executive as well as other members of the association.

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Organization Information

The River Fund

Location: Sebastian, Florida - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Project Leader:
Jaya Canterbury-Counts
Executive Director
Sebastian, Florida Uganda
$8,325 raised of $10,000 goal
 
218 donations
$1,675 to go
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