Latest update

Uganda registered 701 new cases of COVID-19—its highest-ever daily increase—on 7 December. In response, the president urged the public to strictly follow preventive measures, including wearing masks, washing hands with soap and water, sanitising and maintaining social distance. A national newspaper, the Daily Monitor, reported on 8 December that hospitals across the country were running out of space. Medical professionals are concerned about the possibility of a malaria outbreak alongside the COVID-19 pandemic.

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COVID-19 in Uganda

How is Compassion currently operating in Uganda?

  • Are Compassion centres open?

    _Compassion child development centres in Uganda are operating at a variety of capacities depending on the region. _

    Many centres have been able to welcome children and youth back to classes and activities in small groups. Others remain closed while staff members make home visits and phone calls to check on families and provide assistance. Staff members have been able to distribute over 94,000 food packs and 260,000 hygiene kits to Compassion-assisted families, and they have provided medical support to about 53,000 individuals.

  • Are children receiving letters?

    The majority of letters are delayed in Uganda, which means it may take longer for you to receive letters from your sponsored child. We encourage you to continue sending your sponsored child letters of encouragement and hope. What a joyful day it will be when those letters are delivered!

  • Are gifts being delivered?

    Gifts continue to be distributed in Uganda. Staff members have been given the option to disburse monetary gifts to caregivers, where appropriate. This applies to family gifts and child gifts (including birthday and final gifts). Families may spend the gift on whatever they consider most important to meet family needs. The caregiver will decide the best use of the money, recognising that sometimes purchasing food or paying rent is in the best interest of a child.

How you can pray

Thank you for praying for children and families in Uganda who have been impacted by COVID-19—and the local staff and churches who continue to serve them in difficult circumstances.

Please join us in praying for the following:

  • God would heal Simon and Timothy from their sickle cell disease and allow them to return home soon.
  • Doctors would be able to find the right treatment to correct Agnes and Kisakye’s heart conditions.
  • Treatment would be successful for the nine children diagnosed with HIV.
  • Comfort and peace for the five children and their families who are recovering, healing and learning to extend forgiveness to those who abused them.
  • Doctors would be able to help and provide wisdom to Moses’s parents as they care for and treat his severe anaemia.
  • God would be with Gladys as she recovers emotionally, psychologically, and becomes all that God desires her to be.
  • God’s peace and comfort would be with a young girl who tested positive for HIV. Pray that she would be reminded that God has a specific plan and purpose for her life.
  • God would provide safe job opportunities for caregivers and parents to provide for their families.
  • Continued success of the income generation initiatives that are allowing parents and caregivers to provide for their families.
  • God would provide the land that UG0150 needs to support more children in their community.
  • God’s continued hand of protection would be on the local church partner staff as they continue to serve and support the children, families and caregivers in their community.
  • Safe delivery of the three babies in UG0437 that are due in December 2020.
  • God’s Will and peace in the upcoming presidential elections.
Food relief for families in Uganda

Food relief for families in Uganda

The lockdown restrictions in Uganda to prevent the spread of COVID-19 saw Obbo lose his job as a cook in a school. “I tried to look for work. However, the rich who can hire fear COVID-19 and wouldn’t hire me,” says Obbo. “The rich are fearful of COVID-19; the poor fear hunger.”   Read more open_in_new

Crisis Reports from Uganda

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    Civil Unrest and Riots in Uganda (Final Crisis Update) 17 Dec, 2020

    The situation

    Kampala, Uganda is now calm and business has returned to normal.

    Global Compassion impact

    Number of local church partners affected: 0 Number of Compassion assisted children affected: 0

    New information

    Fortunately, no local church partners or children were directly affected

    Prayer

    Thank you for your prayers for the safety of children, families, church partners and staff.

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    Civil Unrest and Riots in Uganda 18 Nov, 2020

    The situation

    A presidential candidate was arrested yesterday, which triggered unrest and protests in Eastern Uganda. Three people died in the clashes with police. The peak of the chaos was reported in Kampala City and the outskirts. The election is scheduled to take place in January 2021. Many fear that the unrest may continue until the elections.

    Global Compassion impact

    Number of local church partners affected: 0 Number of Compassion assisted children affected: 0

    New information

    Fortunately, no local church partners, children or staff have been directly impacted by the unrest. They are taking precautions and monitoring the situation, as well as limiting movement in the impacted areas.

    Prayer

    Please pray for the safety of children, families, church partners and staff in Uganda.

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Please note: Due to the current pandemic, most child development centres in Uganda are temporarily closed. Our local church partners continue to meet the urgent needs of the children through home-based care.

A snapshot of Compassion's Child Sponsorship Program in Uganda

Compassion’s program is contextualised across countries and communities, as well as age groups.

  • Children aged 1 to 3 receive home-based care.
  • Children aged 3 to 11 visit the Compassion centre for eight hours on Saturdays.
  • Students aged 12 and older attend the centre for eight hours on Saturdays. They visit three to five days a week during school breaks.
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Compassion Program Activities in Uganda

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Compassion assisted children in Uganda typically attend program activities at their local child development centre on Saturdays. Here is an example of what a typical program day looks like for children in Uganda.

9:00am - A time of prayer and devotion.

9:30am - Spiritual lessons, in which children sing songs and learn Bible stories.

10:30am - Break time, when children can play in a safe environment and develop friendships. They are usually provided with a nutritional snack, such as tea, porridge and a bun.

11:00am - Social-emotional lessons ranging from conflict resolution to developing healthy self-esteem and a godly character. Children are taught social and personal skills.

12:00pm - Lunch time where the meal often consists of maize, rice or plantains with beans, peas or beef.

1:00pm - Health lessons, in which children learn practical health and hygiene tips. Example topics include how to prevent malaria and HIV transmission.

2:00pm - Letter writing and career planning. Older children work with local staff to identify their strengths and interests and set goals for their future.

Students can elect vocational training skills, such as carpentry, tailoring, and mat making. Parents are also offered monthly classes on adult literacy and quarterly training on topics such as hygiene, parenting and income generation activities.

The greatest needs impacting children living in poverty in Uganda

21%

of people live below the poverty line

375

mothers die from pregnancy related causes per 100,000 births

82%

of people lack access to improved sanitation

Uganda has been free from colonial occupation for more than 50 years. That time has not been easy, yet the nation is slowly climbing out of the mire of political feuds, protracted conflict, and longstanding problems of corruption. It is now known as one of the strongest African economies and a place where poverty is on the retreat.

Many locals continue to deal with the aftermath of the brutal two-decade long civil war which terrorised the country’s north.

The war, between rebel group the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), led by Joseph Kony, and government forces, remains Africa’s longest-running armed conflict. During their 26-year reign of terror, the LRA abducted more than 30,000 children, forcing them to become soldiers, weapon carriers, and sex slaves.

Since the LRA was pushed out of Uganda—and into neighbouring countries—in 2006, the majority of the 1.8 million people displaced by their violence have returned home or resettled. However, a generation of young people is scarred by the war. The process of rehabilitating displaced or traumatised children, women and men and reintegrating them back into society is made even more difficult by a lack of resources.

Despite the nation’s progress in the fight against HIV/AIDS over the last two decades, HIV continues to disproportionately affect adolescents, especially girls. Access to medical treatment is improving but is still a struggle for many, especially in rural areas.

President Yoweri Museveni has now led for more than 30 years, having first come to power in 1986 when he led the National Resistance Army in a guerrilla war against then-President Milton Obote. He is eligible to stand again in 2021, although his success or otherwise will probably depend on the growth of the nation—including his efforts to lift more Ugandans out of poverty.

Meanwhile, local churches are hard at work, reaching out to the poorest children and their families and sharing a hope more powerful than poverty.

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Stories from Compassion around the world

28 Mar, 2018

An Astonishing Meeting that was 21 Years in the Making

When Jonathan and Rebecca started sponsoring Ronald, they had no idea that, more than 20 years later, they would become the guests of honour at his wedding in Uganda... Read more

12 Apr, 2018

What Possessions Do Children Living in Poverty Treasure Most?

From remote, isolated tribal communities to bustling cities and crowded slums, 10 children in our Child Sponsorship Program share their treasured possessions. These are their beautiful, surprising and funny answers... Read more

29 May, 2020

How Will COVID-19 Affect the Developing World's Economy?

The COVID-19 pandemic will have a major impact on those living in poverty, likely for years to come. Learn how... Read more