“Helping hands 4 Africa is a Community Based Initiative that started way back in 2011 with the plight of transforming the disadvantaged livelihoods in eastern Uganda live a better life. We are situated in Jinja district, which lies 80kms East of Kampala city, Uganda’s capital working with the rural poor communities in our country.
Uganda as a developing country is among other problems, afflicted by Civil wars, hunger, economic stagnation, extreme poverty, low literacy levels, and the AIDS pandemic that continues its deadly foray into every village. This calls for innovative actions that are designed and implemented to bring about change. Helping hands 4 Africa is actively pursing this at the grass roots.
As development partners, non-governmental organizations are proving to be more effective at grass roots where government hands cannot reach. Helping hands 4 Africa is one of the few grass roots organization based in the Eastern Uganda offering educational, medical and nutritional services to the rural communities as well as helping to facilitate their social, spiritual, Educational and economical well being.
We derive our support from the valuable services of volunteers, friends, sympathizers, well-wishers, Christian and non-Christian resources as well as our dear partners in-country and abroad who offer financial, moral, educational and material support to facilitate our activities.
The founders of the initiative are much concerned about the increasing poverty levels, high prevalence rate of HIV/Aids, increasing number of orphans without any assistance, high unemployment, lack of respect of human rights and high illiteracy levels within the community. This was realized after carrying out a baseline survey in Bulamagi sub-county as a sample project in August 2007 and the following were realized;
Eight-nine out of every 10 homes have been affected by HIV/Aids such as increased number of orphans and family members without any assistance.
The most vulnerable and affected are the women and children because of the African family setting yet they are the core of the households, at the centre of hunger, malnutrition, diseases, illiteracy and all other effects of poverty.
Four out of every ten of school going age can not attend school even when there is free universal primary and secondary school seemingly because they lack scholastic requirements such as books, uniforms, school fees, meals, etc
Even the free universal schools are few, in long distances, congested and poorly facilitated.
Most of these disadvantaged livelihoods often fall sick but don’t get proper medical treatment because they cant afford the medical bills in the recommended hospitals/medical centers, which are often in long distances despite the fact that the roads are in poor conditions and the means of transport is expensive.
The old going age (Elderly) is also in the centre of poverty, hunger, diseases, malnutrition, and all the other side effects of poverty as they are totally dependants.
Four out of every ten homes are single mother/children/widow/grand headed families without any support.
Eight out of every ten persons with disabilities (PWDs) are seen as a curse to the community/family, neglected under certain circumstances and even themselves are not aware of their rights as citizens of their mother country.
The rate of HIV/Aids tend to increase because of the high poverty levels within the communities for instance young innocent girls are enticed with smaller items like snacks/chapattis in exchange for sex.
Even older people going for sex end up going for unprotected sex because they can not afford to buy condoms, ignorant about condom use and the government free aided condoms are poorly distributed.
Eight out of every ten youth have lost hope and continued being vulnerable as they are un employed, uneducated, lack life skills, lack capital to set up businesses hence resorting to agriculture which is domestic and un productive due to poor soils, poor markets of their agricultural produce, landless, etc
Children’s rights are not properly observed in the rural communities due to ignorance of these rural livelihoods about their rights such as forcing young girls to marry at tender ages.
We at Helping hands 4 Africa have realized the need to mitigate the social, economical and political causes of their vulnerabilities, so as to enable them live better lives through a way of providing and advocating for proper medical care, better nutrition, basic support, educational support, human rights, spiritual and moral support.
We envision at a self sustainable, healthy, educated and poverty free community with increased capacity to sustain themselves.
To mitigate the social, economical and political causes of their vulnerabilities so as to improve on the life of the disadvantaged livelihoods in the community.
To extend specific services to the disadvantaged livelihoods in the community.
To fight poverty through education of orphans and other disadvantaged members in the community.
Improve and support community based initiatives for reduction of poverty, illiteracy, HIV/Aids and any other as the situation as the situation may arise.
Initiate, promote and support community based initiatives for reduction of poverty, HIV/Aids, illiteracy as the situation as the situation as the situation may arise.
To identify and carry out community based initiatives for reduction of poverty.
To implement income generating projects aimed at creating sustainable income sources for vulnerable women and youth groups, the activities will involve: – high value crop production, bee keeping, piggery, poultry farming, fish farming, food processing (i.e. addition of value to agro-produce) and animal traction.
To train and support local communities in the fight against the spread of HIV/AIDS through advocacy, prevention, support and care, home base care, training counseling aids and peer educators and information dissemination awareness to reduce its social economic effects.
To support orphans of AIDS, girl-child and vulnerable children through provision of educational facilities namely: better schools at rural based, vocational rehabilitation centers, school fees, scholastic materials, uniforms etc.
To promote respect for human rights among members especially promoting awareness of rights of children, women, disabled persons, youths and marginalized groups in the society.
To promote advocacy and networking between the various development partners and carry on consultancy in all fields for learning.
To promote the preservation and the protection of the environment, and to raise funds from donations, grants and investments to further the objectives of the organization.
To improve rural livelihoods of the communities through enhanced adoption of improved agricultural practices and modern technology as well as encourage addition of value to agricultural produce in order to improve the social economic status of the people through increased productivity, enhanced human resource development and natural resource management.
To improve the standard of living of the people by enhancing proper use of natural resources as will be indicated by the ability to meet their basic needs in life namely – adequate food, decent housing, clothing school fees, medical bills etc.
To support and foster improved life skill training and knowledge on Sustainable Organic Agriculture among local communities for improved nutrition and household incomes.
Provide participating farmers with improved seeds, improve market research for the processed and unprocessed produce, practice-improved technology such as irrigation systems, small-scale agro-processing industries, processing food using solar dryers to promote increased income at household as well as organizing.
Establishing and adopt micro credit and saving scheme among rural community to maximize income at grass root with the overall goal of fighting poverty.
To mobilize, sensitize and involve vulnerable youths and women in project activities and adopt rural micro entrepreneurship; increase opportunity for the homeless to acquire affordable housing, decent clothing, etc.
To carry out capacity building training as strategies to improve the performance and output of the members”
Reporter: Mr Bogere Ali