“The biggest problem this world has is poverty. Poverty breeds hunger; hunger brings anger; anger brings violence and violence we can’t control.”
— Pastor Solomon Mwesige
90% of the problems in the world therefore, could be seen as having the problem of hunger as their backbone. Food is doubtlessly the most important necessity in every society.
Ugandan schools do not provide lunch to the students. Imagine a 9 year old child leaving home at 7:00 am in the morning and going back home at 6:00 pm on an empty stomach! This is a sad reality.
For more than nine years now, our ministry has been feeding impoverished children all over the country in refugee settlements, orphanage homes, schools, churches, villages and community settings.
What started as a donation to only King Solomon’s students is now feeding over 26,000 children every day while also donating food to other humanitarian initiatives in the fight against hunger. We intend to continue our commitment to eradicating this great conflict here in East Africa by providing a solution to their major root cause; hunger.
The Rwamwanja and Kiryandongo Experience
The largest refugee settlements in Uganda are Rwamwanja (in Western Uganda majorly with refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo) and Kiryandongo (in Northern Uganda majorly with refugees from South Sudan).
Anybody who has visited these settlements either leaves in tears or deeply moved by the high levels of poverty and the vast need on ground. The whole experience is both heart moving and heart breaking. Both settlements cover a vast area of thousands of acres. They are both directly under UNHCR and Office of the Prime Minister (OPM). All other organizations involved in any form of work within the settlements are funded by the UN except Feed The Hungry East Africa. Our main commitment is largely on feeding.
Some Milestones So Far
When anybody moves around the schools where the feeding program is done, the heads, administrators, parents and observers will tell you the same story. They all testify to the following among many other milestones they have attained as a result of our presence.
- The student population exploded as a result of the feeding program. In some schools, a number that was less than 400 before the program is now more than 2600. The pupils come majorly because of the assured food security. This is why we made sure feeding is done within the schools to make sure education is encouraged. Their attention, concentration and attendance has grown massively.
- The relationship between the parents and the schools has as well been enhanced. The parents are happy that their kids are fed.
- Academic performance has greatly improved in all schools. Food truly does a lot.
- The spiritual nourishing that comes as part of the program has done a lot to restore hope among many in the camps. Many witnessed the most traumatizing experiences during the conflicts in their war torn areas. Some testify that they jumped over dead bodies, were raped by gangs and lost many dear ones. Feed the hungry is nourishing the whole man; spirit, soul and body.
- The list of the milestones goes on and on. The coming in of Feed the Hungry was indeed timely. The sight of the population that gathers by thousands to receive lunch every day is so touching.
Some Notable Challenges
“We definitely can never have shortage of needs; only of resources (money).”
— Pastor Solomon Mwesige
Unfortunately all the feeding centers are faced with similar challenges some of which include;
- The need for more food since the numbers both in the camps and in the schools continue to increase.
- The need for dining halls at all the feeding centers because kids have their meals under trees and wherever they can find space.
- The need for utensils (plates, bowls and large saucepans) at all the feeding centers.
- The need to build kitchens at all the feeding centers. Food is currently prepared in weak, broken shelters and under trees.
- These and more we trust to find solutions to so that the program will continue making a difference in the lives of many tens of thousands.
We greatly appreciate LeSEA Global Feed The Hungry and all its partners for their continued support and efforts towards the sustainability of this program.