This project focuses on the poor, especially women. Why women? Women and children are the most vulnerable. Furthermore, they often run the risk of attack and abuse. Women will take any opportunity to help their families survive even if it means being involved in activities that could potentially humiliate them. Women often are left to reclaim discarded items in exchange for small change. Young girls work as maids or are pressed into service as sex-workers, while boys are often involved in child labor and petty criminal activity.
The majority of women, unlike men, discuss how painful it is for them to send their children to school each day with only the meal in their bellies and no shoes on their feet. Our experience through the community reveals that men often hide money from their families for their own desires. Even if his family might be struggling, a man may spend money in other areas that fulfills his own desires, without considering family‘s needs. Therefore, women need to be empowered so that they can transform their families.
Women are worst hit by chronic poverty in Uganda. They are the most illiterate, the most involved in un gainful employment or work where they don’t get paid. They bear the brunt of bringing up children and ensuring they go to school.
A report entitled – Chronic Poverty in Uganda; The Policy Challenges – reveals that over 8 million of 30.7 million people is chronically poor, with women forming the bulk. “Overall, 27% of the chronically poor households in rural areas are headed by women with the percentage rising to 40% in the urban setting,” says the report.
Often chronic and inter-generational, ultra poverty creates a trap that is incredibly difficult for women and their families to escape. Traditional microfinance institutions do not reach out to the ultra poor due to the very high level of accompaniment required to help them ascend from ultra poverty. Ultra poor women tend to be the victims of social exclusion and lack self-confidence or opportunities to build the skills and resilience necessary to plan their own futures.
This program is managed by:
Stella Namala Ssemakula – Graduate in Social work and Social Administration, with specialty in child protection. She involved in a not for profit organization that supports sponsorship of school fees for children in Africa.
Gloria Anabo Kasingye – Graduate in business administration and with a wide experience in the administration and micro finance for women groups