Prossy Naamala is one of the children in our child sponsorship program. She stays with her mother, 3 brothers and 3 sisters at a small village called Gayaza one of the remote corridors of Masaka City.
Before enrolling Prossy on our program, she was struggling to access basic needs. On 8 July 2022, she got lucky when we identified a sponsor for her. Ever since her life has changed. She has got access to education, stationery and lunch meals - essentials that wouldn’t otherwise be available to her. She is now attending school regularly, has something to eat while at school every day and has enough stationery for her education. Prossy now concentrates in the classroom and her academic performance and social life have impressively improved.
At the beginning of the year 2023, during one of our routine visits to assess the welfare of the children on the program, our staff visited Prossy’s family and interacted with her mother. While interacting with Prossy’s mother, she revealed to our staff how the family has for so long had a challenge of sleeping in very poor conditions. She then led our staff around their semi-permanent shaking house and displayed the only two very old and tattered mattresses the family had. Our staff was prompted to ask about how the other children in the family sleep. And Prossy’s mother replied.
‘’I improvise - at night I try to put together these pieces of a mattress and I share a bed with my youngest son. Then for the others, we collect and heap banana leaves and dry grass, and cover it with rugs to form a mattress for them to sleep on’’.
Emotionally we were knocked down by this revelation from Prossy’s mother.
And we took a step forward to try to find a solution for Prossy’s poor sleeping condition. We shared the situation with Prossy’s sponsor. Good enough the sponsor was touched and kindly donated to provide bedding for her sponsored child - Prossy, her siblings and their mother.
Last June 2023, it was a surprise and joy for all in Prossy’s family when our staff delivered beddings donated by Prossy’s sponsor - Angela. The bedding included a mattress, a pair of bed sheets and a blanket for each family member who got them as their own for the first time in their lives. At first, the family thought our staff was going somewhere and got lost, so, they should offer him the correct directions.
After getting assurance that the mattresses, bed sheets and blankets our staff had carried were theirs, it was once again joy unstoppable all over. Everyone jumped in the air and screamed in JOY.
Each family member received a new mattress, a blanket, and a pair of bed sheets.
One of Prossy’s sisters in the photo above said
‘’I can’t believe this. Because sleeping on a sponge mattress and under a bed sheet and blanket are things of well-off children and families. But not children or a family like ours’’.
In quote: this is what some of the family members said on the spot.
“I have almost been sleeping on a floor and the night has been hard for me always without even a blanket to cover myself in the cold nights. I am so lucky that I am going to sleep on a comfortable mattress for the first time and also cover myself in a warm blanket with the bed sheet. I can't wait to go to sleep tonight.
Thank you dear Angela for these amazing gifts.” Prossy Naamala - sponsored child
“I have been collecting dry banana leaves to make a bed for my children. No blanket, no bed sheets to cover them at night. The whole situation has been a total dilemma. Sometimes I have been abandoning my old mattress (the only mattress in the house) to my children, to make them get the experience of a mattress. Sometimes, we have been sleeping on this tattered mattress in shifts. It’s like I am in a dream now to see that all my children can sleep comfortably each covered with a blanket and with a bed sheet. I am overwhelmed by this. When the Youth With A Vision child officer called that he is coming to visit us as the family. I couldn't imagine the visit was so heavy and could change the life of my entire family. God is answering our prayers in a surprising way. Thank you Youth With A Vision.” Monica Namutebi - Prossy’s mother.
It is these acts of kindness that restore confidence and hope to children and families in poverty like that of Prossy while creating a great impact which lasts for a long period of time.
Angela, thank you so much for your generous donation of bedding to Prossy and her family. Your support has created a positive impact and planted seeds of hope in Prossy’s family.
And for us at Youth With A Vision, you are our source of encouragement for the furtherance of our work with disadvantaged and vulnerable children, youth and families in Uganda like that of Prossy.
We are Youth With A Vision, and together we continue to strengthen, defend and advocate for the rights of marginalized communities and empower disadvantaged children, and youth to reach their full potential through education, care and support.
PROSSY’S FAMILY HAS OTHER CHALLENGES AND A WISH LIST
Prossy’s family house is not only dilapidated but too small, congested and moist. Its floor is muddy and the roof always leaks. So, whenever it rains, the entire house becomes inhabitable. The family’s wish is a facelift of their house.
Food is also a challenge to the family; in most cases, they only eat once a day and that is in the evening when all children are back from school. Currently, Prossy is the only lucky child in the family when it comes to lunch meals. She is sponsored and there accesses to lunch at school while all her siblings don’t have access to school lunch meals.
Prossy’s mother is unskilled and uneducated for any paying job.
She is unemployed but depends on the availability of casual jobs to provide for the needs of her children. In this way all the money she earns from any available casual job, she spends on food for her children. Prossy’s siblings struggle to access education. They are always sent back home for tuition and stationery and money for lunch meals. So many times, this money is not readily available at home. So, they are meant to stay at home and miss out on the curriculum a condition that has a negative impact on their learning.
The family’s wish is an income-generating project (such as a chicken farm, a dairy cow or a roadside stall for essential foodstuff) to provide for their nutrition and also sustain them in the long run. In the short run, Prossy’s siblings need. access to school, lunch meals and stationery.
Can you join us in helping this family to move a step away from Poverty?