Each winter, Americans search for the best holiday deals on Christmas gifts like tech toys, appliances, and household goods. Yet education is the best gift you can give in Uganda, whose rates of secondary school completion were just 62% in 2018 and have likely worsened after the world’s longest pandemic lockdown. Currently, the government is making investments in education. However, Uganda is among the poorest nations in the world, and it’s also home to the largest refugee population in Africa. More funding for schools is urgently needed.
Here’s what your gift can accomplish in strengthening school resources and, by extension, attendance and graduation rates:
- Safer school buildings. All buildings require routine maintenance as they age, but Uganda’s two annual rainy seasons often hasten damage to school buildings. Common problems include leaky roofs, foundations weakened by water runoff, and more. Runoff and bacterial problems are also worsened by Uganda’s predominantly dirt roads. In addition, schools need fences and other security equipment to protect students from child traffickers and other criminal interlopers.
- Teacher training and salaries. There is currently a teacher shortage in Uganda. Teachers were forced to find other work during the long pandemic lockdowns, and many found better-paying jobs in a wide variety of fields that left them little reason to return. Private schools have been even more funding-challenged than public ones, with 85% not able to pay full teacher salaries. With so many teachers leaving the profession, robust salaries and training programs will be needed to recruit new ones.
- Essential classroom and building supplies. Many schools are in need of essential classroom, restroom, and other facility supplies in order to provide an efficient and high-quality learning environment. These can include desks, projectors, chalkboards, lab equipment, beds for live-in staff members, and much more.
- Clean water access and sanitation. In Uganda, access to clean, safe water is hard to come by. School staff and students often have to fetch it from nearby bodies of fresh water, which frequently contain harmful infection-causing bacteria. Funding for water sanitation is essential for addressing one of the most basic of human needs.
- Essential educational programming. In order to qualify for skilled jobs that offer reasonable job security, students need access to training in lucrative fields. They will need to be especially proficient in STEM and language arts subjects as well as vocational training.
The Gift of Education for Ugandan Children Lasts a Lifetime
Simone’s Kids in Nakaseke, Uganda provides education and meets basic needs for children in order to help them break the cycle of poverty. Your donations help purchase nutritious food, school supplies, textbooks, and other necessities for Ugandan students.
It’s time for our annual Classroom for Christmas drive! Join us in giving back this holiday season with gifts that provide hope to our students in Uganda. Make a difference by shopping at the Simone’s Kids Store or donating to Simone’s Kids today!