Kumbaya Children’s Foundation has received 40 mosquito nets from PACE, a local non-governmental health organisation. The nets were handed over to the Foundation during a small ceremony at the Mpererwe based home by Mr Zacch Akinyemi, the Executive Director of PACE, on Thursday, July 10th 2014.
The Foundation, home to 48 children, has recently been plagued by malaria, with 10 children currently at home, receiving the medication.
“Malaria has been a problem lately. The nets we had have all been wasted away. It is becoming very costly to pay for treatment, on top of paying school fees and buying food,” Pastor Robert Ssenfuma, the Director of the Foundation.
Taking the lives of more than one million people each year, the malaria epidemic largely affects populations in sub-Saharan Africa. According to the Uganda’s Ministry of Health, malaria “currently poses the most significant threat to the health of the [Ugandan] population.” Between twenty-five and forty percent of outpatient visits at health facilities in the country are for malaria. For Ugandan children, malaria is the primary cause of death.
Pastor Ssenfuma thanked PACE for their generosity towards the Foundation for the mosquito nets received.
“We have been blessed to receive these nets. The children can now go to school, uninterrupted by malaria. We will repair these nets so that they can last a very long time,” he said.
Mr Akinyemi thanked Pastor Senfuma for the work he is doing with the children and the change in has brought about in their lives.
“PACE is privileged to be part of the change that you are bringing to these children. We at PACE are at the forefront in the fight against malaria in Uganda, especially among vulnerable groups like pregnant mothers and children. We work in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and other partners to avert morbidity and mortality arising from the high burden disease areas in Uganda. In this particular case, the nets will protect the children against malaria, and enable them to go to school uninterrupted,” he said.
Pastor Ssenfuma started taking care of the first child, Joan, back in 2008. Joan, now in Senior Five, is one of the 48 children that make up Kumbaya Children’s Home, with a subsidiary in Luweero that looks after 24 children. These children are got from the streets, while some run away from relatives who want to force them into early sex and marriage.
Despite their lack of permanent funding, all the children of school-going age are in school, and they are also given different practical and life skills like farming, baking, making mats, and industrial mentorship to help them become self-reliant when the time comes for them to leave the Foundation.
“We plan to build our own school for the children, as well as our own home, because it is expensive to pay rent and school fees while buying food, with no permanent funding.” Pastor Ssenfuma explains.
Currently, their main source of income is their children’s choir that performs at various churches, and also holds its own concerts; and sells their gospel albums to take care of their children.
PACE is glad to have contributed the well-being of the children and be part of the positive change.
To learn more about the Foundation, visit http://www.kumbayacf.org