Coronavirus Pandemic Response
On March 21, 2020, Uganda registered its first coronavirus case.
As the coronavirus outbreak hit Uganda, the Shule Foundation immediately purchased 20 liters of 70% alcohol, spray bottles, hand soap, water tanks and a thermometer. Enlisting doctors' help, we hit the streets to educate street-connected children about COVID-19, social distancing, and other ways to protect themselves from contracting the virus – including how to properly wash their hands following World Health Organization guidelines for hand hygiene. Shule set up hand-washing stations in areas where homeless children live and continued to conduct COVID-19 outreaches day and night, through March 31.
As the government began implementing directives (social distancing, closing of shops, etc.) to combat the spread of the virus, the lives of Kampala’s street-connected children became even harder.
Since March 21, 2020, Shule Foundation:
- distributed more than 10,000 meals to children living on the streets of Central Kampala;
- took the temperature of every child we interacted with;
- sanitized countless hands;
- quarantined 250 boys;
- resettled 20 children back with their families;
- sponsored two entrepreneurial endeavors for resettled children;
- and engaged 13 children in quarantine in tree planting on Shule’s farm, resulting in more than 1,500 Eucalyptus seedlings being put in the ground;
- distributed 1100 face masks to boys living on the streets in Kampala, Jinja and Mbale districts.
Throughout the pandemic, the kids receive counseling and participate in various educational activities. Shule purchased computers and launched our Computer Program, teaching boys basic computer skills.
Our New Normal
Shule has made adjustments to our regular programs to meet the guidelines implemented by the Ministry of Health of Uganda.
We continue to provide emergency medical care and educate street-connected children on the importance of social distancing and how they can best protect themselves from contracting COVID-19.
Our Skills Training Center now operates as a quarantine center. We house a small group of boys over an extended period of time. The kids participate in music, dance and acting lessons. Play football and chess. Attend computer, English and math classes. Make sandals and liquid soap. Receive counseling in preparation for going home and back to school.
The boys in Shule's Sponsorship Program, are tutored from home until schools reopen in 2021.
How can you help? Your support will help our team continue these essential programs, provide assistance to street-connected boys throughout the pandemic and ensure they have access to regular meals, personal hygiene, education — and ultimately, the opportunity to leave street life behind.