Listen to the Children

Our first step when we begin to work in a new ward is to listen to the children. We do this initially through Future Search Meetings where the children can share their stories with us.In August 2017, we had a three-day meeting in Kambasegela Ward, which is made of three villages. There were eight children from each village for a total of 24 participants.

On the first day, the children were all encouraged to think critically and present their honest thoughts and feelings of the past, the present, and what they hope for in the future.

On the second day, the children focused on four main challenges that they all faced:

Challenges were:

Education

    • Lack of school uniforms
    • Shortage of desks
    • Not enough teachers, textbooks, or classrooms
    • Poor latrines

Health

    • Lack of proper information and knowledge about HIV and AIDS
    • High cost of medical care
    • Distance from medical facilities; only two medical facilities in the ward
    • Common occurrences of malaria and other communicable diseases such as diarrhea and cholera

Care and support

    • Challenges when parents die
    • Abandonment by parents and relatives
    • Poverty of parents and guardians
    • Agriculture and livestock:- Lack of adequate farm inputs to support farming activities
    • Diseases that often attack crops and livestock- Floods and drought

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