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Friday, 27 March 2020

Why stay at Home

In UK and USA far too many people are thinking that the Government policy saying STAY AT HOME doesn't really apply to me. It's for other people. No. It's for me.

My daughter Joanna, a very hard pressed General Practitioner sent me this little graphic which really shows just what happens with viruses spreading.

Click the link below and it will all make sense



Thursday, 26 March 2020

A Global Emergency

The Coronavirus (COVID-19) has set the world a challenge to remain safe and prevent deaths.
We are kept constantly updated by our Governments on hand washing, social distancing, staying in our own homes and isolating the most vulnerable. We are all doing our upmost to comply because we know this will save lives. There is a social and economic impact of the restraints we are currently living under but we are all try to make the best of it and hope this epidemic is soon over.

We at HUGS also know the affect this is having on our friends in Uganda. They are trying to cope with all these changes without the safety net and infrastructure we have here in the UK.
The schools in Uganda were closed without warning. Sebastian and Fred had to rush around collecting the children from the various boarding schools and return them to their own homes. One of the children couldn’t return to his own home so Sebastian and his wife Victoria have taken him in and made room, together with their own five children. Another one of the children we pay school fees for was worried there would be no food at home to feed him. We had anticipated this and our good friend Lydia who runs the Bury African Outreach Charity sent money to pay for emergency food.

As a precaution we have stopped the building work on our new school for deaf children.

Covid 19 has appeared in Uganda and if it really takes off then the very limited health resources cannot be expected to cope.

There are 55 Intensive Care beds in Uganda. Manchester University Hospital Royal Infirmary alone has more than that.

Tuesday, 24 March 2020

We must decide!

At a time when 1.7 billion people around the world are in lock down it is so easy for us to wait until someone wise tells us what to do. A dangerous route to take when we remember of all the awful things that have been happening in our world and which were either started or 'not prevented' by our political masters.

They have not suddenly become wise and truthful. They are the same and so often muddling along giving the appearance of knowing what to do.

I'm not an expert on Covid 19 but I do now that if I catch it it will be because of my own carelessness or that of others.

It took far too long for the simple message STAY AT HOME to be the lesson learned to date.  Wash my hands over and over again. Keep at least 2 meters away from people.

Our new St Francis de Sales School at Jinja is on programme but we are carefully considering the wisdom of  a number of builders working on the project. It's a pretty isolated site and a long way from the big towns but Uganda now has Covid 19 and their health services could never handle a major epidemic. We may decide to pause.

All our Uganda and Rwanda schools have closed and many people they will rely upon a small holding or large vegetable garden which has proved to be the route to survival so often in the past. We have less resilience in UK.

Thanks to all our donors for your continuing support. This month we had our charity Annual General Meeting and I stood down as Chairman and Administrator and handed over to Dr. Richard Bircher, my son in law. He will do a brilliant job. I will remain as a Trustee and try not to meddle.

Sunday, 1 March 2020

Latest news from our projects

At the start of 2020 we have 3 main projects underway and one which we hope to start.

2020 marks the 25th year of the charity.

Firstly the Scholarship programme;

The academic year started with 66 active scholarships out of the 124 we have funded over the years.
(58 have completed). 57 are at primary or secondary school and 9 are at further education/university.

"F"completes her medical degree course this year.

The second big project is at Good Shepherd School for children with special needs. It has always been a challenge to help the school to achieve financial sustainability which we believe is really vital for all our projects. Without this so many great ideas die when the funders can no longer provide the money. With help from one of our most generous supporters we have started a £27,000 agricultural project near Fort Portal. When fully operational in about 3 years time this will not only provide substantially improved food supply to the 160 to 200 at the school but also generate cash to help pay running costs. The land has been purchased and we will keep you up to date as things develop.

The third project is the build of St Francis de Sales Nursery School for deaf children. Land was purchased by our partners the Jinja Organisation of Parents of Deaf Children and work has started. We visited the site in December and now the building is progressing very quickly. The school will take up to 100 children with full dormitory accommodation because children will come from quite distant places.

This was the site in December

And here it is in January

The other project yet to start will be dormitory accommodation at Little Shepherd School at Rtunguru.

If you know anyone who might like to sponsor a student do please let us know.