Beacon of Hope, Uganda, has operated in rural Uganda since 2006. The humanitarian service seeks to help the residents of rural Uganda, most of whom live in poverty. Most of the programs offered by the organization focus on children and the youth, giving them the boost they need to better their lives and that of their communities. The organization designs the programs based on the needs of the community and the available resources.
Some of the problems the organization addresses are some of the most prevalent in rural Uganda. They include HIV/AIDS, hunger, malaria, poverty, access to education, lack of clean drinking water, and orphaned children. The organization has been able to help hundreds of thousands of individuals directly or indirectly by educating the youth and equipping them with different life skills.
Some of the livelihood programs include:
Youth Leadership and Development Training
Beacon of Hope, Uganda, realizes that empowering the youth is empowering a whole community. The youth leadership and development programs aim to make the youth live fulfilling lives by teaching them service leadership, entrepreneurship, and customized leadership training to ensure that the youth can support other people in the community.
In most cases, volunteers carry out the training for the Ugandan youths, and sometimes experts are involved.
Small Business Support
Rural Uganda has rich agricultural soil and great agricultural weather. Most of the residents engage in sustainable agriculture, transport services, retail services, hospitality services, and food processing among others. Those with skills engage in trades such as tailoring, cobbler services, repairs of bikes and motorbikes, and such other skills. Some, however, do not have the skills or the resources to start businesses. Through donations from well-wishers, Beacon of Hope, Uganda, trains the residents and helps them start small businesses to support their families.
Support Children Education
With the communities living in poverty, the quality of education is affected. Some students are not going to school and some have dropped from school. The government of Uganda introduced free primary education in 1997 and free secondary education in 2007. While pupils can go to school and not pay a thing, the government schools are congested and the system is inefficient due to lack of funding. It is common to walk into a class with more than a hundred students.
The schools lack facilities and there are only a few teachers in each school. The Beacon of Hope, Uganda, has helped children raise fees to support education where they will get more help. Volunteering teachers also help give an education to the communities.
Health and Environment Programs
The leading causes of death in Uganda include neonatal disorders, HIV/AIDS, malaria, respiratory infections, tuberculosis, and diarrhea among others. Infant mortality rates are high and so is death due to poor hygiene that results in diarrhea. Beacon of Hope educates the residents of the importance of good hygiene while offering toiletries to people in the communities.
In Uganda, at least 20 percent of the population lives below the poverty line. Furthermore, 29 percent of all children under five are stunted according to World Food Program estimates. Although the country produces enough food that they can export to Kenya and other East African countries, poverty limits access to food and so many families sleep hungry. This has contributed to the high infant mortality rates and malnutrition cases in Uganda.
Some seasons are worse than others, especially if the country faces a drought season or during times of epidemics and civil unrest. Beacon of Hope, Uganda, supports some families with food donations during times of hunger.
You Can Volunteer or Donate
Anyone can volunteer to work with Beacon of Hope as a community health worker, a teacher, a trainer, a social worker, or take any other position they are best suited in. You can also donate food, funds, or any other resources. The organization is headquartered in Mukono, Uganda.