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HAPPY 4TH OF JULY!

HAPPY 4TH OF JULY!

UPDATE ON COVID-19 UGANDA

The Ugandan Government remains by and large on lock down. Over 1,000 people have contracted the disease, and no deaths have been reported so far.  Our BPC partners have provided us the following report on how the disease is impacting their communities:

SCHOOLS
School-going children are the biggest population in Uganda so it is wise the Government is mandating they stay at home. With the current rate at which the virus is increasing, it is very dangerous to have children in schools. Most schools lack  the infrastructure to accommodate big numbers of children, hence limiting the effectiveness of prevention measures like social distancing. Access to masks as well as detergents for washing hands and continued cleaning of the environment are also big challenges. As such, the Ministry of Education has put in place special platforms to enable children’s learning. Studies are provided on televisions, radios and online for those who have access to the internet. Also Government newspapers are providing some lessons, primarily for children in the candidate classes (that is, if the children can afford to buy the newspaper @ 2000 Ugandan shillings each). The students can complete and submit the work to their respective teachers to be marked and graded. However, most children in our communities have no access to any of the above so they end up being idle.

Fortunately for Donela School students, the staff have been diligent in distributing the work,
especially to those in the candidate classes. Our biggest challenge is that most of the caregivers are not educated. This has made monitoring the children’s academic performance at
home difficult. Our children are typically weak in their academics, so having a caregiver who is not pushing them enough compromises our efforts. Some children are not committed to doing school work even after it has been delivered to them. We are working with these caregivers to see how our children can be helped. We are still not sure when the Government will reopen schools.

FOOD

Safety, good health and food are our greatest needs during this time of COVID. Thank God for the COVID relief fund! All our clients were able to get food last month and hope was restored to many families.

HOME LIFE

While violence in families is on the rise, we are relieved to have not encountered any evidence of it yet in families with our Life with Hope-sponsored children. In regards to the health of sponsored children, we thankfully have not found any major health issues, apart from a few cases that we were easily able to manage. Public transportation is up
and running again so those children who need to pick up their medicine from hospitals on appointed days are now able to do so.

 LOCUSTS

According to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, the locust swarms are currently in Kenya, and a few may move into northeast Uganda. Click here for more details. Alex followed up recently with the following report:

"We need some of those drones that are killing the locusts in India down here! Did you know that the Uganda government has already spent billions to buy stones to fight locusts and the over all budget plus paying stone throwers is 2.5 trillion Ugandan shillings! That would save us a lot."



COVID IMPACT ON CHILD SPONSORSHIP PROGRAMS

We want to report that many of our children have lost Life with Hope sponsorship due to the economic burdens COVID-19 has placed on our supporters. We currently have 12 children that need Life with Hope sponsorship and 31 children that need Ewange sponsorship. We ask that you pray for the Board of Directors and our BPC partners as we discuss how best to manage this decrease in funding.



Child in need - Kakooge, Uganda

DIFFERENCE BETWEEN "LIFE WITH HOPE" AND "EWANGE" SPONSORSHIP PROGRAMS

We frequently get questions regarding the difference between Life with Hope and Ewange sponsorship. Below is a clarification of each. Life with Hope is the traditional sponsorship Align started back in 2008. The $35 monthly donation covers the costs of food and clothing, basic medical and mental health care, quality primary and secondary schooling and school supplies. Children receiving Life with Hope sponsorship are in stable home environments and can receive a quality education within a reasonable distance of their homes. "Ewange" is a local Lugandan word which translates to “In my home”. In addition to the needs Life with Hope sponsorship covers, these children may require a different housing situation, additional food and/or other necessities provided close to Donela Bombo school, the Life Health (medical) Center and the Bombo Church campus. Some children need to be moved to a different living situation for their physical and emotional protection; others so they can move closer to a school where they are able to receive a quality education. On our Align website, children who need Ewange sponsorship have the outline of a small house in orange located at the bottom right corner of their photos.

UC IRVINE PROFESSOR IN THE NEWS IN AFRICA

Father Godfrey Nzamujo was an expatriate priest and Professor of Microbiology at UC Irvine when severe famine hit Africa in the 1980s. Overcome with sadness, he returned to his home continent and worked in the country of Benin where he developed a "zero waste farming" concept. Not only did it address the problem of hunger, it also helped the environment and the local economy. The Life Home children and our Gethsemane Farm will benefit learning this man's efforts! Click here for an MSN article to read more of this incredible man of faith.



Noah Migaire, Manager of the Gethsemane Farm

UPDATE ON SPONSORED CHILD CORRESPONDENCE

Our BPC partners want to alert you that communication has been restored with the sponsored children. We encourage you to send an email to them during these trying times of  COVID-19. We appreciate your continued patience and support!

One last thing...

Summer is here, and Amazon has some great products to make it that much more fun for your and your family! And if you shop at smile.amazon.com, AmazonSmile donates to Align International at no cost to you. Just make sure to choose Align International as your charity of choice on AmazonSmile. This money helps to defer our Stripe and credit card fees, and are especially needed in this time of COVID-19 when every dollar counts.