We’ve been working in Uganda since 2008 to support marginalised children and young people affected by conflict, children in conflict with the law, and children and young people in refugee settlements.
Depend on agriculture to make a living.
Of children don’t complete primary school.
Refugees are living in Uganda.
Strengthening inclusive education in refugee settlements
Uganda hosts 1.4 million refugees, making it the largest refugee hosting nation in Africa. Approximately 75% of all refugees are from South Sudan, though recently there has been a sharp increase in new arrivals from the Democratic Republic of Congo as people flee both war and Ebola. Among them are almost 700,000 children of school age. While there is a wider plan for education in place for refugees and host communities, there is little data available about the number of children with disabilities in these settlements and their access to education.
Identifying the needs of children with disabilities
To address this gap in data, we have worked with our partner AWYAD to assess the needs of children with disabilities in both Kyaka II in the west and Palabek Refugee settlements in the north of Uganda.
We mapped out existing resources dedicated to inclusion of children with disabilities into school, and will use the data to put together a response to address the long-term educational needs of children with disabilities.
We work with AWYAD in two refugee settlements
Young people supported with agribusiness training in 2019, so they can earn a living and escape the cycle of poverty. Will you give the same opportunity to another young person for £15?
Giving vulnerable young people access to employment and food
With endemic poverty and unemployment in northern Uganda, young people have no means to improve their prospects. Agriculture is by far Uganda’s largest employer, with 86% of Ugandans living in rural regions relying heavily on subsistence farming. However, in northern Uganda, agricultural production and know-how have been greatly disrupted by two decades of conflict, poor government investment in infrastructure and the effects of climate change. The Covid-19 pandemic and locust attacks have further exacerbated the threats to food security for many people in Uganda.
Tackling poverty with vocational training
We provide 3-month practical training courses and mentoring opportunities on agribusiness and entrepreneurship to vulnerable young people. This enables them to obtain higher agricultural yields, access the job market and eventually set up their own agricultural business. We also provide ongoing psychological support delivered by our social workers and peer educators. We aim to improve well-being and reduce vulnerability for all young participants.
Giving young people a Right2Change
60% of children in northern Uganda are apprehended for petty crimes (e.g. theft of food, school materials, sanitary pads). These crimes are punished harshly by the authorities. Far too often, children are sent to adult prisons where they are subject to sexual abuse, violence and appalling conditions.
Between 2015-18 in partnership with Passion for Community, we supported over 2,000 of some of the most vulnerable young people across the Agago, Pader, Kitgum and Lamwo districts. An amazing 99% of children and young people helped didn’t reoffend and 95% of our graduates are now earning an income. Before starting Right2Change, just 3% of young people had received information about the procedures of their cases, compared to 55% at project completion. Our approach was found to deliver excellent value for money, with each £1 invested in our Right2Change project, a social return of investment of £10.30 was generated.
People in Uganda’s refugee settlements have been given handwashing and sanitiser facilities. Will you help us reach even more of the most marginalised communities during the pandemic?
Our response during COVID-19
At the beginning of the lockdown, ensuring continued access to essential supplies was our priority. Through our Covid-19 Response Fund AWYAD was able to distribute soap, hand sanitiser and handwashing facilities – reaching over 1,000 refugees, children and community members. We also trained women to make reusable facemasks, meaning they are able to go out in public as well as sell the masks to bring in an income. Read more>
We’re also providing food to vulnerable children and their families, who are hit hardest by Uganda’s strict lockdown, including sending a 2-month food supply to over 60 rural, vulnerable families. One of our partners is also operating a mobile health clinic to provide medical services, occupational therapy and PPE.