We've updated already on the work that was done to the school - shutters to the boys dorms, playground upgrade, mosquito nets, bunk beds - but updates relating to people that were supported have taken a little while longer.
On my first visit to Uganda I provided monetary assistance to rehabilitate a paralised epileptic boy. Unfortunately his mother Aisha did not attend the sessions and did not learn to care for him. The second time I visited his condition had worsened. I made the difficult decision not to fund more treatment - it really was a hard one, but it had been proven to me that this wasn't going to work. Unfortunately Musa passed away.
CALM began an investigation into neglect by his mother Aisha and involved the local police. However, unfortunately whilst she was being investigated, Aisha also passed away.
Our thoughts are with Musa's brother. We are trying to find out how he will continue schooling and if he is being cared for now that his mother has gone.
This news is not easy to digest, but we know that if we're going to do social work in a developing country that we will come across this sort of thing from time to time. You have to take the good with the bad and focus your efforts on areas that you can actually make a difference in.
Mariam's latrine has been completed. This will improve sanitation for her and her 3 children and increase their health.
A small business loan was given to Mariam to start a charcoal selling business. This was quite a risky loan as Mariam had no business experience. However, I am pleased to confirm that she has succeeded in her business and is now earning enough to support her family without having to spend long days digging in other people's fields.
Ronald was loaned a pig to increase his family's income. The pig has been well cared for and is now pregnant. When it gives birth in 1 month's time, 3 piglets will be claimed back as the loan repayment and he will sell the rest as income before breeding again.
When we met Scovia she was being given free rent by a friend but had no income. She was loaned 3 bags of charcoal. The charcoal business is still running, though her friend has insisted now that she pay some money for rent.
It is our hope that in time Scovia will be able to save little bits of money and expand her business, though this will be a slow process for her.
Mary was loaned 3 bags of charcoal to sell in her existing shop. She has done so well with this that she has been able to purchase 2 piglets and invest in fruit to sell also.
Margaret was given a loan to start a shoe and handbag sales business. Unfortunately Margaret did not comply with the agreement and seems to have spent the money (approx £50) on delivering her baby instead. This is disappointing, but again, something that does unfortunately happen from time to time.
It's difficult to say what we would do differently next time, both Margaret and Mariam felt like high risk loans. Mariam's turned out so well and has improved her family's life, whereas Margaret took advantage of the situation. Had we been a little more conservative then we would not have lost £50, but Mariam would still be digging in fields, her disabled daughter left unattended and with no money for food or soap.I feel like we made the right decisions but appreciate that not everyone will agree.
Once again, a huge thank you to those who contributed. Your donations have just kept giving and made lasting improvements to the lives of many people who just needed a little bit of help to get back on their feet.