From sustainability to Corona
2020 - a year of contradictions, progress and set-backs, big challenges and small seeds of hope waiting for the right conditions to grow. When I flew to Uganda in February 2020 the challenges in the Ring of Hope Uganda (RIHU) projects were plenty. But you could also feel hope where the projects were fruitful and where people showed their motivation to change their lives to the better.
Then the Corona Virus arrived in Uganda and in combination with the strict lock-down additional problems began. Hand-to-mouth earnings weren’t possible anymore and people started having serious difficulties to earn at least some money to buy at least some food. “Stay-home-stay-safe” wasn’t and isn’t possible for the street children as their home is the street. Small business projects struggle to survive even more now. Boarding school children were sent “home” without having parents and a home to go to.
Here is a little update on what has been done in the last weeks and where we stand now:
Thanks to the help of many supporters and the RIHU team in Jinja we have helped 160 families in need, 150 street children and all our boarding school children to provide them food for their survival.
Street Children work
The plan is to help the organised street children (they have been starting renting little rooms in the slum together and share a blank room in groups of five) to take the next steps in their lives towards an independent life in dignity. A seminar is needed for that.
This goal is out of sight these days since gatherings in seminars are not allowed. Street children are fighting for their survival more than ever before. We are able to provide them food one time a day. A lady cooks a simple meal and they can pick it up at her place. Thank you very much for the donations we have received to make this daily support during the Corona lock-down possible.
We have identified some children who have a high motivation to bring change in their lives, to leave the streets and to attend school or an on-the-job-training. If you are interested in supporting them, please let us know.
Moon Catcher Project
With the cooperation of the Moon Catcher Project and Ring of Hope Uganda all the girls supported through our projects will be provided with reusable menstrual pads. This is something of big importance for the girls as many of them still face problems at school during their period and then even miss school days and education till their period is over. Also for the RIHU boys it will be valuable because the Moon Catcher Project educates them as well to create awareness about what’s happening with the girls during their periods.
The Moon Catcher Projects produces the reusable menstrual pads in Africa and provides the necessary sewing skill trainings for the women who make them.
Sponsorships and Empowering Women
In 2020 we have started six new sponsorships for children’s and teen’s education.
After a successful development of empowering a young lady, we are searching for more support we can provide to single mothers. Instead of supporting a child with its school education we decided to support the mother with a job-skills-training. After three years she is now running her own little business which enables her to properly care for the child and pay the school fees. We have identified more women who are ready for a change in their lives. What it needs now is to work together to enable them help for self-help towards a self-determined life. If you want to help empowering single-mothers please contact us.
The upcoming weeks and months
For the time ahead it will be still necessary to use the means we have to support the ones who can’t access food during the Corona lock-down. We hope for support that also some of the sustainable projects like empowering women and street children can continue. The destroyed kitchen of the RIHU Center is another project we are working on and it also consumes resources (see the pictures below). The challenges are plenty especially because of the fact that COVID 19 hit the weakest in society the most. We are trying to support - step by step - with the means and possibilities we have.