Uganda is going through tough times at the moment with a surge in Covid cases forcing a nationwide lockdown. For some, the lockdown just means staying at home, working from home, doing school online, and only going out to get the bare essentials. But for all those who don’t have the luxury of regular work, or access to online facilities, the lockdown means a very different state of affairs. Basically it results in all types of informal work, on which so many people rely, being stopped, which means that any chance of earning any sort of an income is stopped, which means no money coming in, which means no money to spend on food, which means no food. And the children aren’t at school so they can’t learn and they can’t access school meals, so there are more mouths to feed than usual…… Lockdown is a massive issue.
This is the situation for our friends in Acholi Quarters, where overnight many of them lost their sources of income, and the children were told that they must stay home from school, again. They’ve already missed about a year’s worth of school, and now another month is being added. Tough times.
But, all is not lost. CRED recently sent out some funds to be distributed to members of the Lubanga Ber co-operative, through whom we reach in to the Acholi Community. And yesterday, the youngsters who are members of the 4th Mercy Scout group, were delighted to be visited by the country leaders of Mercy Scouts and to take part in a food distribution programme. The 4th Mercy Scout group is the first Scout group ever to be held in Acholi Quarters, and the young people wear their scarves with pride, as reminders of the fact that through the group they are members of a worldwide movement. Being part of the food distribution programme was a reminder to them that whilst they might feel as though life has stopped for a few weeks, they aren’t forgotten by those outside Uganda.
The Scout Promise contains the words:
On my honour I promise that I will do my best
To do my duty to God and my Country
To help other people at all times;
To obey the Scout Law.
And one of the Laws is to ‘be a friend to all and a brother to every other Scout’.
Yesterday, not only did the 4th Mercy Scouts live out that Promise and Law as they helped with the food distribution and showed friendship to all, but those Scouts from overseas who donated the funds also lived out the Promise and Law themselves, through showing their support of, and friendship to, Scouts in Uganda.