On Pause ...
COVID-19 was a learning curve many of us never believed would come. That being said, for us at DMI it exposed areas of development that we must attend too. Supporting the families of widows effected by loss in the AIDS epidemic has always been our main focus. That focus spawned our nutrition program, and later, school sponsorships, garden rentals, and medical giving. There are so many needs within our small group of families. We wish we could address each and everyone of those needs, but at this time we’re in a difficult spot and again need to pivot for long term success.
Can we be frank, resources are running low. School fees in Uganda have doubled due to factors we are all experiencing. Couple that with rising food costs all over the world and the resources we have won’t go far. The board has been communicating regularly with Pastor Godfrey’s team and feel it’s necessary for the time being too reset and re-focus.
For the time being we need to pause school sponsorships. Prior to COVID-19, our system worked but wasn’t perfect and required we be on the ground to pay fees and evaluate students. With lockdowns in place we haven't been to Uganda in more than two years. We're finding school fees are increasing and some want to require boarding students. These circumstances alone have shown us that some leg work needs to be done to viably steward and sustain this program.
We’re doing the leg work though - our first trip back to Jinja since COVID is in the works for June 2022. Kathy Cernero and group of colleagues and volunteers will take this opportunity to assess schools that DMI can partner with and negotiate school fees, as well as, open a dialogue about each students academic standing. We’ve also reached out to potential partner organizations with established sponsorship programs in Uganda to help us find a sustainable way forward. So while we take this time to restructure and evaluate the sponsorship program, we’re going to focus our financial and ground resources back on our primary focus, the family and the nutrition program.
We have 18 families that our currently in our care and to support them, we still need your help. The nutrition program provides 30 kilograms of Beans and and 50 kilograms of Posho each month. The cost to sustain this program comes to roughly $2,000.00USD per month. If you were sponsoring children, we’re asking you to shift your support for the time being. We'll provide further updates regarding our progress shortly!