Asembo Bay Women for Development

Education

Education

We recognize that educating our children is the most important and most basic building block in HIV prevention. We support the local schools by buying school supplies and books and through encouraging school attendance and reading. We have volunteers from Canada each year who offer free computer lessons to our primary school students.

Our investment has paid off and each year more and more of our orphans pass the national exams in class 8 and are eligible for secondary school. We attempt to find sponsors for all children who qualify. This practice has instilled hope and motivation in the primary school children and their teachers. Last year we had 13 children begin secondary school.

Funding received for education is used to sponsor children for the four years of secondary school.


Food Security

Food Security

Improving food security is a fundamental building block of HIV prevention. Hunger and the desperation associated with having no food is directly associated with risk of HIV transmission. We have a very successful bee keeping operation and last year started a fish pond.

We are in the process of installing an irrigation system which will increase the options for growing food on our land.

Funding received for food security is used to pay the widows stipend for working on the communal property.


Community Economic Development

Community Economic Development

Asembo Bay Women for Development includes 60 widows who are divided into economic groups of 10.

Each group operates its own economic activities like small scale farming and, meets weekly. Each group operates a "savings and loan" program for its members with all members contributing a small amount weekly to the "pot". The "Pot" is used to make short term loans to members who need funds for an emergency or to expand their business opportunities.

The Widows Group also operates a "social welfare" program for its members with monthly contributions of members being used to assist widows with funeral costs of close family members.

Funding received for the widows is used to pay for transportation to medical care for HIV positive members, to provide start up funds for new ventures and to provide basic foodstuff during times of extreme hunger.


Community Celebrations

Community Celebrations

Having community events to mark important occasions like Christmas or the opening of school is an important part of creating a caring community for our orphans. We typically try to have a community celebration whenever we have visitors from Canada in the village (usually at the visitors expense!) because it provides an opportunity not only to feed our hungry children but, also to allow them to sing, dance and entertain a highly appreciative audience.

This year, has been particularly difficult for our poorest members due to the high cost of food. What this has meant for our children is that their guardians have not been able to provide shoes, school uniforms etc.

Asembo Bay Women for Development is proposing that we organized a Christmas party and purchase shoes for the orphans for Christmas and, basic foodstuff for the widows and grandmothers.

The total cost for feeding everyone and buying gifts for 211 orphans and 90 widows and grandmothers is $3500.