Omushana has 4 priorities for 2023/24. Your help is needed to make these a reality!
1. Libraries, Reading Promotion & IT
Omushana now supports four Community Libraries located in different districts adjacent to Bwindi Forest and Mgahinga National Park. All the Libraries are furnished, stocked with hundreds of books and have either solar power or connection to mains electricity. Three of the Libraries also have an IT section with up to 10 laptop computers. We fund eight librarians who supervise the libraries 6 days a week and make daily visits to schools to read stories, demonstrate computers and encourage a love of books. Over 40 schools - 5000 children benefit from the Librarian services and Library resources.
It costs approximately £750 per month to run the entire project including Librarian salaries and allowances, expenses such as travel to schools, plus equipment maintenance, repairs and building improvements.
So we are always in need of donations! Both one off donations and regular monthly payments are very much appreciated as we are committed to funding the libraries for several years to come.
44% of children in the Bwindi area are affected by malnutrition so much that it impacts their brain development - yet this is a region of plentiful nutritious food.
Omushana has developed a project proposal with a local nutritionist and a chef that aims to change the way that schools feed pupils with a goal of reversing malnutrition and positively impacting on the eating habits of the next generation.
The pilot projects took place at several schools in a variety of locations around Bwindi Forest and we are now extending the programme to reach more communities. Working with school staff, school cooks, pupils and parents, we are able to show how to improve the children's diets using locally available ingredients such as millet, soy, milk, fish, fruits and vegetables and peanuts. All the diet improvements we recommend are affordable (less than 1p per child) and are demonstrated so that everyone can gain practical experience during our workshops.
It costs up to £500 to take this programme to a new School/Community but we know this is money well spent. It results in real and lasting changes! In 2022 we revisited some areas where we held workshops in 2019 and 2020 and found that most schools were now adding supplements to the children’s meals and families were applying the knowledge they gained at home.
We are now hoping to get sufficient funds to run workshops in 5 more schools/communities to create lasting improvements to children's diets and health for generations to come.
Water filters are a fantastic way to ensure pupils have access to clean drinking water without the need for schools to boil water. Many schools don’t even boil water due to the cost of firewood so children go all day without a drink.
Omushana has already provided filters to four schools and we want to promote the use of filters throughout the Bwindi and Mgahinga areas – it is so important that pupils have access to drinking water during the day and filters also have significant environmental and financial benefits.
A water filter costs £75. If you are interested in sponsoring a filter, please send a donation!
We need approximately £50 per month to ensure children around the forest have access to sports through our projects, such as the Sports Kit Lending Library. Our volunteer co-ordinator visits several schools a week to encourage and coach pupils and school teams, reaching over 500 children each week. Omushana also supports a number of sports competitions each year including kids football leagues and athletics. If we had more funds, we could do so much more!
If you want to help us run these sports projects in future, please make a donation.