The support for 320 orphans with improved goats project in Uganda as implemented by Kagumu development organization (KADO), started in Jan 2011 as a means of improving household incomes and nutrition of orphans in our maiden effort of poverty alleviation. It was borne from the fact that these orphans live under very difficult circumstances, lack any sustainable social safety and in abject poverty. Because of this vulnerability, they have been exposed to blatant criminality and terrible social and economic abuses.
1. Current status: From the commencement of this project, it was discovered that to ensure meaningful livelihood of these orphans, there was need to mobilize the community within which they live to appreciate their plight, support and provide appropriate care. This was intended to strengthen the social safety network for these orphans. To date, the community is very supportive of their social plight. The orphans have also been mobilized and empowered with coping mechanism strategies through life skills training and income generation. They are a reformed lot of citizens with great potential for transformation in both behavioral and economic empowerment change.
2. Activities so far implemented: Mobilized and trained 40 guardians and 80 orphans in goats shelter construction and management. Mobilized and offered social psychosocial therapy and support to 120 orphans. Mobilized and trained 80 orphans in life skills management and income generation. Mobilized and trained 40 local community leaders in social safety support for orphans and other vulnerable children. Mobilized through community fundraising and supported one orphan with an improved goat for demonstration purposes. This goat has since delivered 5 young ones.
3. Challenges: Although the orphans have been mobilized and rehabilitated, the lack of economic empowerment has great potential for perpetuating their vulnerability. There is therefore need for urgent economic support in order for the current achivements not to be reversed. The organization has limited financial support to scale up the project according to design.
4. Recommendations: Urgent financial from our development partners to enable the project to sustain its intended goal is required.
5. Testimony from one beneficiary: Kaseya Monica is a twelve years old girl orphan who lost both of her parents at the age of five years. She has been living with her distant relatives but under very difficult circumstances because she has been forced to sustain her livelihood through child labour. The organization located her in Kagumu trading center on 2/14th/2011 at 8:00pm selling roasted g-nuts. When she was queried why she was doing so, she narrated that this activity is the source of her livehood in terms of food, school fees and other human basics. She narrated how she had lost her parents at the age of five years and how the world over turned since that fateful day. She noted that the loss parents at tender age, is not only stressful but horrible. That it expenses to the full force and weight of the vagaries of a society that is devoid of any social safety framework for orphans and other vulnerable children. This girl was used as a living story of what many orphans are going during the community fundraising event in which money was raised to purchase an improved goat for her.