Uganda

Country Facts

  • Population: 38 million
  • Life Expectancy: 55 years
  • Literacy Rate: 78%
  • Average Annual Income (GNI): $1,820

Country Overview

Uganda is a landlocked country in East-Central Africa, bordered by Kenya, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, South Sudan, and Tanzania. It achieved independence from Britain in 1962. The capital city, Kampala, is one of the fastest growing cities in Africa. Uganda has a young, rapidly growing population. It is a country rich in natural resources, making agriculture the most important sector of the economy. 
 
Although there has been a significant reduction in poverty in recent years, one third of the population still lives in extreme poverty. For decades, Uganda has been a destination for hundreds of thousands of refugees escaping conflict in neighboring countries. The large influx of refugees puts a strain on the economy, making it difficult for the government to provide adequate healthcare, education, nutrition, water and sanitation for all. In addition, there are 2.7 million children who have been orphaned by HIV/AIDS, poverty, war, and other causes. These children have little to no access to healthcare or education. They lack basic necessities such as food, water, and clothing- even a simple pair of shoes is a luxury. 

Development

WCF has sponsored free business seminars in Uganda to foster long-term self-sufficiency in Masaka and Kampala.

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Uganda has made significant progress in reducing poverty in the last fifteen years. The proportion of the population living in extreme poverty (on less than $1.90 per day) dropped from 62.2% in 2002 to 33.2% in 2012. However, there is still great need for development. For every three Ugandans who get out of poverty, two fall into poverty. This demonstrates the need for continued efforts to maintain the country’s successes thus far and foster continued progress.  According to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM), 28% of adults in Uganda own or co-own a new business. However, many small businesses do not survive. Guidance and mentoring in regards to budgeting, business ethics, management, marketing, business plan development, and other topics is essential to the growth and long-term success of small businesses.

Humanitarian

WCF has sponsored projects for the Touch a Life Destiny Orphanage/School in Masaka, Uganda. The orphanage is home to almost 300 children and provides each child with daily meals, shelter, and education.  

WCF sponsored construction of new dormitories, installed electricity and lights, created new bathroom facilities, installed a security fence, purchased new beds and mattresses, and provided new shoes, clothes and toiletries for each child.  WCF also sponsored the food program for several years. 

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Children are among the most vulnerable populations in times of economic hardship. Children orphaned by poverty, war and disease are especially vulnerable. According to UNICEF, 2.7 million of Uganda’s children are orphans. 1 million of those orphans have lost one or both parents to AIDS. At least one in four households has an orphan, and over 32,000 children between the ages of 10-17 are the heads of their household. At least 10,000 children live on the streets, many of them in the capital city, Kampala.

Orphans are especially vulnerable to the effects of a lack of proper nutrition, shelter, education, and healthcare, as evidenced by the nation’s high under-five mortality rate. If these children receive the help and support that they need, they will have the opportunity to live long, fruitful lives. Your donations will go toward feeding, clothing, and educating orphans in Kampala.

Medical

World Compassion Fellowship sponsors free medical and dental clinics in remote locations. Our volunteer physicians and nurses see hundreds of patients who are sick with anything from the common cold to diabetes, malaria and HIV.

 

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Our last medical team visited Uganda in 2014 and saw 570 patients, providing consultations and medication as appropriate. We also provided healthcare seminars (e.g. hygiene, diarrhea prevention, HIV, infectious diseases, etc.). Although public hospitals in Uganda have a free healthcare policy, many sick people are not able to receive the care they need at these hospitals either because the nearest location requires walking for hours on unpaved roads, or due to lack of physicians, nurses, medical supplies, and pharmaceuticals. The average person cannot afford to be treated at a private clinic and therefore lives without receiving the proper care and medication.

Treatable illnesses claim many lives in Uganda. HIV, malaria, lower respiratory infections, cardiovascular disease and diarrhea are among the leading causes of death. Uganda has one of the highest infant mortality rates in the world, and 16 women die every day during childbirth. There is one doctor for every 24,000 people. Health education as well as access to free or affordable medical consultations and pharmaceuticals make a world of difference in preserving, maintaining and improving the health of the average person.