In Central Uganda
Geography & Climate
- Central Uganda, home to the country’s capital city, Kampala, has 16 districts.
- The region shares a large portion of Lake Victoria with Tanzania to the south and Kenya to the east.
- Lake Victoria is Africa’s largest lake and the world’s second largest inland freshwater lake, after Lake Superior.
- Among Lake Victoria’s many islands is the Sese archipelago, known for its great natural beauty.
- The soil in the lake region is especially fertile and among the most productive in the world.
- The annual rainfall can be as high as 80 inches, occurring mostly during two rainy seasons — March to May and September to November.
- The climate in this region, with abundant rainfall, is usually ideal for farming. However, flooding occurs occasionally.
Home to the capital city and the country’s only international airport, the central region is also Uganda’s business hub.
In addition to working in the business sector, many families in the area farm coffee and cotton. Often, families also raise cattle and goats to supplement their meager incomes.
Children at Home
Urban homes in central Uganda are usually small structures, with mud or brick walls and metal roofs.
In urban centers like Kampala, the government has sponsored housing development projects to keep up with the growing population.
Over recent years, the number of street children and impoverished people in Kampala has increased noticeably.
Issues and Concerns
- Unemployment is a critical issue in Kampala. Groups in Uganda occasionally hold demonstrations against the government. However, economic improvement is slow, and urban Ugandans continue to live in conditions of great suffering and need.
- Because of the lack of opportunities, many of the city’s youths fall prey to drug abuse, crime and gang activity.
- A large part of the capital city is located in a flood-prone region. The seasonal floods often lead to outbreaks of cholera and other illnesses caused by drinking unclean water.
- Also, standing water — a prime breeding ground for mosquitoes — leads to thousands of cases of malaria each year. Children are affected more often than adults.
Local Needs and Challenges
Young people are faced with such pervasive influences as drug and alcohol abuse and the temptation to join violent gangs.
Most TV and radio programs for youths are imported in developing countries, so much of the content isn’t relevant to local culture and often conveys violent images.
Other dangers to children include sexual abuse and neglect, domestic violence, and disintegration of families.
Malaria, HIV and AIDS, malnutrition and lack of access to clean water also threaten children’s health.
Schools and Education
- The school year in Uganda has three terms: February through April, the end of May through mid-August, and early September to late November.
- Students typically attend school about 250 days each year.
- Among Uganda’s population, only 66 percent of those age 15 and over are able to read or write.
- Among women, fewer than 58 percent are literate.
Compassion Uganda works to ensure that every registered child is able to attend school, and it provides additional support, including tutoring, at the child development centers.
At the Compassion Child Development Center
Compassion child development centers provide registered children in central Uganda with the resources and learning opportunities they need to overcome poverty.
Medical attention, extra nutrition, academic tutoring and vocational training help ensure that they will grow into healthy, happy, responsible adults.
Most important, the children have the opportunity to learn about the love of God and gift of salvation in Christ.
What Compassion Sponsorship Provides
In partnership with local churches, Compassion is bringing real help and hope to impoverished children in central Uganda, providing:
- regular nutritious meals and snacks
- health checkups and medical care as needed
- the support needed to attend school
- training in their rights and how to defend themselves against abuse
- the Compassion curriculum of holistic child development, adapted to Ugandan children’s culture and needs
- lessons that help children learn how to manage conflict and negative emotions
- training in good parenting practices for caregivers, including healthy ways to discipline
- income-generation training and opportunities for caregivers
- education about God’s love and the life-transforming power of salvation in Christ