Global Care is helping children with disabilities through a number of initiatives across Uganda:
The Ark is a day centre caring for up to 15 children with disabilities, in Soroti, a market town in rural north Uganda.
All the children at the Ark have physical disabilities, often mobility issues, of varying degrees of severity. Some have learning disabilities as well.
At The Ark, children receive healthy meals, training in basic life skills, light physical therapy and basic education, where appropriate. Staff have developed partnerships with other NGOs and an orthopaedic hospital, and are able to support children in receiving further treatment when possible. When appropriate, we help children attend school – although this can be challenging due to cultural attitudes towards disability.
The Ark provides a warm, caring environment for children leading very difficult lives – and even with this simple support parents are seeing changes.
Our Partners (from £18 per month) and Child Sponsors (from £25 per month) for The Ark enable these children to access opportunities they would otherwise never have had. Find out more about this project and how you can become involved here.
South-western Uganda has the worst rates of school participation for children with disabilities in all of Uganda, apart from the war-ravaged north-east. Global Care is developing new initiatives supporting children with mobility difficulties in rural Rukungiri.
Since January 2019 our Rukungiri team have been working with a group of 19 children with mobility issues, in partnership with parents and schools, to explore the most effective ways of helping them access education. By mid-2020, 14 of the children were attending school regularly and punctually, thanks to a variety of approaches which included transport to school, payment of school fees, new mobility aids and the construction of accessible toilets at school. Although the evaluation process has been delayed by the coronavirus pandemic, we are currently examining the evidence, in collaboration with parents, schools and local authorities, to identify the most effective and sustainable approaches, in order to support more children with disabilities to access education across Uganda.
Help more disabled children in Uganda access a better future, through donations or partnership (£18 per month). Read more here.
Disability Support Groups
Atira Disability Support Group was brought together by Global Care, with the intention of enabling people with disabilities and their families to gather for mutual support, in a rural community in Soroti District, northern Uganda.
From the beginning it was intended that this should be a self-sustaining group, led by the community for the benefit of the community. Atira DSG has rapidly established itself as a vibrant community organisation, which is not only making a tremendous difference to the lives of the families involved, but is also challenging the dominant negative attitudes towards disability in the wider community. “Disability, not inability” is their mantra.
Initiatives, designed and led by the group, with initial funding from Global Care, have included a goat scheme, whereby members of the group are gifted a goat, on condition that they hand a kid back to the group, so another family can benefit. Goats are a vital asset for a vulnerable family. for breeding and sale as a source of income. The group are working together to advocate for people with disabilities in terms of rights, education and welfare issues.
A second Disability Support Group, in Abeko, a remote district north of Soroti, has also been established, again with support from Global Care. Their range of activities also includes a goat scheme, and a playgroup for children with disabilities whom they have assessed as extremely isolated. The group meets in a local primary school twice per week. In late 2020 Global Care was able, through trust funding, to build two accessible toilets at the school, improving facilities for the children, and to enable the school to realistically offer places to children with disabilities, now and in the future.