Uganda is home to approximately 35 million people with the majority being juveniles. A reasonable percentage of the juveniles are orphans and vulnerable children under personal strife for survival, guardianship or care by their surviving parents who are either widows or step parents.
The disadvantaged groups have fallen subject to marginalization by community because of the fact that they live miserable lives; attain very low levels of education and are vulnerable to many diseases due to poor medical care and living standards. This yields loss of hope in life and subsequently, the victims turn desperate.
Bungokho is one of the rural constituencies in Mbale District located in Eastern Uganda. Its predominantly inhabited by peasants and illiterates. A reasonable percentage of the population is disadvantaged and marginalized groups like widows and orphans.
These marginalized groups (the widows and the orphans) are also affected by many social-economic problems attributed to financial inadequacy. Due to financial, the widows living below the poverty line, they are rendered un-able to access and supply basic necessities of life to their children. Subsequently, the orphans fall victim to malnutrition, poor health (disease) and they attain very low levels of education failing them to favorably contribute to community development among other negative consequences.
Very many children of school going age have opted to become street children in neighboring towns where as some have chosen to become sugarcane cutters, fishermen assistants in the neighboring swamps; rice growers and others provide labor in the region. This puts their lives and their future at stake because they grow up looking at a narrow future. The youth commonly form gangs of drug addicts, thieves, burglars, prostitutes, and alcoholics’ e.t.c. which increases the level of crime in the area.
Some of the orphans who lose either parent at a very low age fall prey to malnutrition, scavengers, poor hygiene and this resultantly yields high levels of infant mortality.
MOWA therefore comes to restore hope for the hopeless in this region supplementing the programs of the Uganda Government’s plans of education, immunization and prosperity for all. This association plans and hopes to establish life boosting projects like Rehabilitation Centers, Scholarship Schemes and Entrepreneurial Projects to generate funds for other projects like poultry farms, tailoring, Art & Craft. These maybe championed by widows.
This association also hopes to look at youth and up bring them through developing their talents while working hand in hand with religious leaders in the region for the rekindle of Godliness in the area. However, this will be possible through self-support financial projects, lobbying assistance from other institutions, donations, grants, government assistance and community sensitization of education, lawfulness and childcare.
'Let Us Rekindle Hope'
Emmanuel Matekha Founder Member Maaka Orphans & Widows Associations
We“hope” that by changing economic, social and cultural and political structure, there will at least be born a just society where peace, freedom and equality reign. It might seem right basing on the current situation of people in Uganda today, but I also think that we don’t have to choose amongst / between growing, changing and preserving our economy, culture or environment. We can do all with integrity and discipline.
This process which is without values and has it’s historical reasons contains nevertheless a fundamental error – human beings are not simply a product of determinant of economic and social conditions.
Technical progress is not always accompanied by the moral growth of persons rather it has happened and unfortunately still happens without ethical principles.
“Nothing About Us Without Us”