UGANDA MEDICAL CLINIC
Access to health care in Uganda has been limited by poor government infrastructure, especially in the rural areas where the majority of the population lives. Only 49% of households have access to health care facilities. To see a doctor, rural farmers often have to hike for miles. And for serious problems, the ill must be transported long distances and the trips can take hours.
MEDICAL CENTER OPENED
In 2007 Charles Nangosia and Fr Stephen Mungoma, an Episcopal Priest conceived the idea of a medical clinic in Lwaboba that would provide urgently needed medical services for this eastern Uganda village and neighboring areas . Nangosia, who currently resides in Washington DC, donated his Uganda residence to house the medical center. The Conejo Compassion Coalition became a partner in this enterprise in January of 2008. Since that time CCC has raised over $50,000 for the medical center and sent a team of eight volunteers to Uganda to complete the project. The team completed the unfinished work and the medical center was opened on October 3rd, 2009. Since that time the clinic has provided care to thousands of patients.
DRILLING A WELL
Prior to the 2009 trip, a geological survey was performed at the site to determine if water could be found in the area. The results of the survey were positive indicating that water was present in a location that was in close proximity to the medical clinic
Upon arrival in Uganda, CCC volunteers hired a drilling contractor and a drilling supervisor, and drilling began at the site identified in the geological survey. After roughly 6 hours of drilling, water was found approximately 60 meters below the surface.
A water sample was collected and sent to the government testing laboratory in Kampala for analysis. When the test analysis results indicated that the water was safe for drinking, a hand pump was installed, and a cement drain was constructed.
EDUCATION IN UGANDA
“Educate a child…elevate a nation” is proclaimed from billboards throughout Uganda, indicating the importance placed on education in this country. In January 1997 Uganda launched its Universal Primary Education Program, which provides free primary school education for up to four children from each Ugandan family. In 2011 this mandate was extended to secondary education as well.
However, the number of free government schools in Uganda remains very small, and those that do exist are hugely oversubscribed. Therefore in order to accomplish its goal of universal education, the government depends heavily on private schools that are subsidized. However government subsidies are inadequate and as a result many of the private schools, especially those in the rural districts, struggle to acquire the resources necessary to provide a quality education for their students. It is not uncommon for these schools to have large classes, too few books and no computers or equipment for their science labs.
Limited access to clean water and sanitation threatens the health of Ugandans and their education opportunities. For too many, dirty, diseased water leads to a cycle of sickness, and lost hope. Poor sanitation, water and hygiene have many serious repercussions. Water-related diseases, such as hepatitis, typhoid, and cholera, caused 8% of all deaths in Uganda in 2002. Young children are particularly susceptible. Water-borne diarrheal diseases annually account for 17% of the deaths of children under the age of five. Health begins with access to clean water
DISTRICT SUPERVISOR DEDICATES WELL
Upon completion of the well, a special dedication ceremony was held. The Mbale District Chairman pumped the first liter of clean water and officially opened the well to all the local residents. The Chairman expressed his gratitude to the Conejo Compassion Coalition for the great work they were doing on behalf of the residents of Lwaboba.
ST. THOMAS & CCC PARTNERSHIP
The Conejo Compassion Coalition has partnered with one such school, St Thomas Comprehensive College, a secondary school serving eastern portion Mbale District near the border with Kenya. When our team visited St. Thomas we found that as many as 4 students were sharing one textbook. This not only required extraordinary effort on the part of students to complete their assignment but it severely limited the pace of instruction. The Conejo Compassion Coalition raised funds so that St. Thomas could purchase additional textbooks for their students. In gratitude the school named its library “Conejo Library”
In subsequent years the organization provided funds to purchase equipment for the school’s science labs. When the CCC team visited Uganda in 2013 theypurchased computers for the school and arranged for the installation ofinternet capability enabling students to do research on line for the first time.
CCC SPONSORS EDUCATION
One seemingly universal value among the residents of Uganda is education. Yet many families, particularly those in the rural districtsstruggle to find the funds necessary to pay school feesfor their children. Many children are not able to attend school at all because their families are not able to afford the school fees.
The Conejo Compassion Coalition has identified several such families and is paying the fees for these children to attend school