Photo Journal: Let Them Help Themselves Out Of Poverty

5 Min Read

December 3, 2012 By IdaHorner

During the course of the year, the Trustees and friends of the charity LET THEM HELP THEMSELVES OUT OF POVERTY put out appeals for money to fund community projects in the village of Ruhanga, SW Uganda.

As much as we ask you to support our efforts to better the lives of people you don’t know, we are mindful that you would like to know how we use that money .

I am going to do just that in this post, as well as how we go about raising money.

As well as putting out appeals for funding, another way we raise money is by taking in paying guests at our local Bed and Breakfast (B&B) known as Uganda Lodge.

Uganda Lodge  serves two purposes: 1) raising money 2) a place for folks to stay in order to share their skills with the community.

There is something unique about our B&B “guests”. They are what is called “volunteer tourists”. This type of tourist seeks a different sort of holiday, that enables them to experience authentic village life in Africa, as well as the usual tourist attractions whilst giving back to the community. This type of tourist spends money in the community and benefits the local economy directly and shares skills with the community. The skills in demand are wide ranging and vary from supervising 10am tea breaks at the local school, working alongside the local teachers, working with women’s groups to technical skills on the capital projects.

For an example of this check out Alan’s work in Ruhanga

So what have  we been up to this year?

Another role of the volunteers is that of being ambassadors for our work. One such volunteer secured a grant of £40,000 from his boss to fund the construction of a community health centre in Ruhanga.

Work began in June with the construction of a toilet that will serve the health centre and this is how far we have come:

When we set out on this journey, our goal was to help create employment and income generating activities within the village. To that end we only employ local people within the project and if we must source experts outside of the community we insist that they too hire local people.

These are the foundations for the community health centre

Folks from the local community getting stuck in

As you can see we have made some progress and we are confident that by the spring of next year the community will have a fully functional community health centre. We will need volunteers with all manner of health care skills, so please be sure to share this information with anyone with such skills.

Even the children took time out of their day to help and  I can’t tell you how much they enjoyed this.

Sadly I have to end this post on a negative note. The ambulance at the local referral hospital has had better days and a new one is required. Here in the UK and the West in general we take it for granted that if you are too ill to get yourself to the hospital, an ambulance will get you there but not so for the people of Ruhanga. With the ambulance off the roads, families have to rely on someone with bicycle or a BODA BODA (motorbike taxi) to get them to the hospital and often exacerbating the medical condition. But we can help change this.

To help the people of Ruhanga SW Uganda get a new ambulance, please follow this link

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