Uganda: Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement Project
Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement Q1 2015 Report
June 16, 2015
Naku Charles Lwanga
Summary of Activities
In addition to health support programs RMF assists the refugee settlement by supporting the education of refugee school children, and developing the economic component of our humanitarian work through vocational training. 5,110 children and students in total are supported by RMF/WCF funding in Nursery, Primary, and Secondary schools. 98 Vocational Training Institute students graduated.
5,110 children and students in total are supported by RMF/WCF funding in Nursery, Primary, and Secondary schools:
- Arnold Primary School, we support 1,918 students
- Panyadoli Self Help Secondary School, 4 students
- Can Rom Primary School, we support 2,623 students
- Beth Cole Nursery School, we support 565 children
Classroom Renovations and New Students
- New staff recruited, additional courses of carpentry and joinery, and bricklaying and concrete practice introduced.
- 121 new students were accepted — 51 for tailoring, 30 for hairdressing, 20 for carpentry and joinery, 20 for brick laying and concrete.
- Hair dressing class, RMF Vocational office, and tailoring class were fully renovated
Tailor Shop Program
Support and Success Continues
- Continued support of the 10 tailors who started tailoring businesses within Uganda with RMF funding and are progressing in the field.
Community Celebrations and Gatherings
International Women’s Day and Cancer Day
International Women’s Day and Cancer Day Commemorated with speeches and other performances on Wednesday 11th March at the RMF compound. 1,641 people (758 males, 883 females) attended the occasion including the host community.
Hiccup Circus Troupe visits
Free Circus Performance
RMF sponsored the performance and educational outreach about HIV/AIDS and behavioral changes in the community.
Using drama showed how HIV/AIDS is acquired, transmitted, ways to avoid it for children and the community at large.
HIV/AIDS Voluntary Counseling and Testing (VCT)
HIV/AIDS Voluntary Counseling and Testing (VCT) continued to be provided in the Panyadoli Health Center III by RMF staff. ART clinics have been conducted every Wednesday; condoms have been distributed and opportunistic infections properly managed with patients having been assisted and supported. Communities have been sensitized on prevention, care and guarding against discrimination and the risk of engaging in risky lifestyles that lead to the spread of HIV/AIDS.
The Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement in Bweyale, Uganda, is a UNHCR managed refugee settlement that provides shelter, land, and support for more than 100,000 people. They are comprised of refugees from Kenya, DR Congo, Rwanda, Burundi, and South Sudan. RMF has partnered with UNHCR in supporting Kiryandango Refugee Settlement, the surrounding community of Bweyale, and the greater Kiryandongo District (an additional 266,197 people) with health care, education, and vocational training since 2008.
- To serve as a health care implementation partner with the UNHCR and Ugandan Government
- To provide health care services to over 100,000 refugees and persons in the community via the Panyadoli Health Centres
- To provide skills training for South Sudanese refugees to enable them to become self-reliant
Click to enlarge
International Women’s Day
Real Medicine Foundation together with UNHCR, OPM, the refugee population, and other partners joined Ugandans and the rest of the world to commemorate International Women’s Day, which is celebrated every year on 8th March, 2015, but was belatedly celebrated on Wednesday 11th March at the RMF compound. 1,641 people (758 males, 883 females) attended the occasion including the host community.
We honor Refugee Women are silent heroes who carry out acts of courage and determination and play an extraordinary role in keeping hope their countries, even here in their country of asylum.
As we commemorated the day, the Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement thought it fit to stop and salute the Refugee Women (Congolese, South Sudanese, Rwandese, and Kenyan) who continued to be brave caretakers of the vulnerable persons in the community, and even switched roles to be sole breadwinners. The global theme for the celebration was “Empowering women, empowering humanity, picture it” and the national theme was “Empowerment of women and girls – progress for all: three decades of gains for Ugandan women and girls.”
With the following objectives;
- Promote respect for Refugee Women
- Promote participation of refugee women especially in decision-making.
- Provide equal opportunities for refugee girls to access education
- Support Refugee Women as Caretakers of the community
- Provide opportunity for economic empowerment for Refugee Women through support of their access to education, payment of fair wages, and non-exploitation and prevention of abuse.
- Protect Refugee Women and Girls against SGBV, and harmful cultural practices.
The climax of the commemoration was on Wednesday 11/03/2015 at RMF compound Kiryandongo refugee settlement, kicked off by the bicycle race at 8:00 am at the youth centre. A total of 15 women registered and participated in this activity though 9 managed to reach the finishing point at OPM compound led by our field officer Adolph Kista Byamungu. The race was followed by marching from OPM compound to RMF compound; both refugee community members and partners participated.
Music and dance from Arnold Primary School, Panyadoli Hills Primary School, from the Congolese, Dinka traditional group, Nyekorac Bududa and Ateki Rwot women’s group from the host community. The ceremony was wrapped up by awarding certificates. 34 persons were awarded — 4 women and 3 men were recognized for empowering women refugees, 27 women were recognized for taking part in bicycle race and football match.
The celebration was a success as refugee women and men participated fully, promoting women empowerment and proving to the world at large that women have come a long way in terms of empowerment. Though we have moved a step, there is always a need to celebrate and keep the hope alive.
Hiccup Circus Uganda/ RMF drama at the reception center
RMF through its operational budget conducted a community mobilization about immunization, HIV/AIDS and behavioral changes in the community through drama in conjunction with Hiccup Circus Uganda plus the youth community group from Magamaga. The major aim of this activity was to reach out to the community so that they can realize the dangers of HIV/AIDS, how it is acquired, transmitted and the way to avoid it and the importance of immunization for children and the community at large.
- The people of concern are still practicing cultural aspects and there is less awareness in terms of protected sex.
- The mothers are less aware about the value of immunization of their children.
- The leaders have not taken the initiative to sensitize the communities about immunization and HIV/AIDS.
- There is need to involve the communities directly in disseminating such information through drama clubs to their fellow people of concern as it becomes easier to spread the message.
Panyadoli Vocational Training Institute visited by JICA and Government of South Sudan
Panyadoli Vocational Training Institute has continued to grow under the guidance of RMF. RMF, JICA, and the Government of South Sudan introduced two new courses at the institute — carpentry and joinery, and bricklaying and concrete practice to increase skills training in the settlement and also to be able to bring on more students who are interested in the subjects offered at the institute. This has boosted the institute’s capacity with more students getting an opportunity to be examined by DIT (Directory of Industrial Training Nakawa).
- The first visit of the JICA team led by their Chief Representative from South Sudan and the Undersecretary to the Ministry of Labour during their visit on the progress of the JICA, RMF and Government of South Sudan skills training initiative at Panyadoli Vocational Training Institute was a visit to the tailoring class.
- The institute managed to graduate 98 students, 23 in hair dressing and beauty therapy, 15 in carpentry and joinery, 43 in tailoring and garment cutting, 17 in brick laying and concrete practice.
- There were enough materials for the students so that every student had what they needed during the course of training, meaning the DIT examiners’ standard was reached and the students were seated for the exams without any disorganization.
- RMF also managed to consolidate with Windle Trust Uganda with the aim of retooling the institute and the items were delivered by Windle Trust Uganda.
- After three months of serious implementation Panyadoli Vocational Training Institute closed with a graduation ceremony. 98 students finished and got their certificates.
The ceremony was graced by visitors from South Sudan including the Minister of Labour, Director of Vocational in the same ministry, the Undersecretary in the same ministry plus the Country Representative of JICA from South Sudan. The RMF Area Coordinator welcomed everyone and the Country Director for RMF Uganda, as the host, thanked the teachers and the partners JICA, the Government of South Sudan and the founder of RMF Dr. Martina Fuchs for the continued commitment to skills for refugees in Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement.