Dear Friends, a belated Happy New Year to you all!For once I don’t have any bad news for you, only good!
Firstly the schools in Uganda DID open on Monday! Good Luck Junior School, the school many of you have helped to rebuild recently, since I used the school as a base for delivering mosquito nets and sanitary wear at the beginning of 2020 and found the buildings in a really desperate condition, is back, though registration has been slow as parents are finding it difficult to find the money to pay the small fees necessary to run the school, such as to pay the teachers.
I’m really happy though, that your response to my appeal to help with the salaries for the teachers for the first six months (only £23 pm!) has been wonderful as usual! Ibrahim, the headteacher, needed to encourage the teachers back as they’ve not had any pay for two years and some were doing other jobs to prevent their own families going hungry. It’s been a real struggle for the majority of people in Uganda during the pandemic. It’s early days yet but hopefully over the next few weeks more children will be able to come to school as I know for certain they will want to, especially with the wonderful improvements we’ve been able to do to the classrooms and latrines!
Alex and Emma, two of the young people a few of you and my husband and I support, went back to school after two years with no education, certainly no online teaching and only the few books I’ve managed to take out over the years and I’m sure their enthusiasm for those must have waned pretty quickly when their village friends will have been busy playing footy with whatever spare time they had between working on the land and fetching water from the borehole!
They’ve gone up into the correct classes but having missed so much work they have lots to catch up on as well as this years’ lessons! They’ve both got a big challenge ahead of them especially Emma who is due to take the National Leavers Exams in November which he has to pass to be able to go onto secondary school this time next year.
The Ugandan government has lengthened all the school terms this year to accommodate the extra work needed but that is still going to be a very big challenge for teachers and the children! And no half-term or Easter breaks for them this year either!
The other student we are sponsoring, Emma’s big brother Paul, has returned to uni for his final year studying Clinical Medicine & Community Health. His ‘requirement’ list for this year included medical equipment such as stethoscope and BP machine reminded me of the good work he will be doing in the villages of Uganda once he qualifies! With help, we’ve been sponsoring Paul since 2008 and it’s been so rewarding seeing him grow from a shy scared boy who could hardly read, into a hardworking, caring young man who is so keen to help his community.
I’m still hoping to go to Uganda at the end of this year but of course it all depends on the pandemic. More adults out there are get their vaccinations now but of course no one knows which way this virus will turn! So I will just have to be patient and carry on funds raising for what I can organise from here. The most important at the moment is to raise money for the teachers salaries so the bills for Good Luck Junior School are reduced and more children can get back to where they love to be, at school! If you would like to help with the salaries it costs just £23 a month per teacher.
Thanks for all your support last year, you’re amazing! 🤗