Sakiya is a small rural community situated a few miles from Mbale which benefits from a very active church-led programme for local children. During the school term, the children gather together every Saturday for Bible teaching, singing, playing games, counselling and the essential cup of maize porridge served in a plastic cup from a large bucket!
Currently about 300 children & young people are registered with the project. During school holidays, the children meet more frequently as the church grounds provide a safe place for them to come and play. Uganda Concern UK has been supporting the project for many years by sending funds for porridge, school exercise books, play equipment, Bibles and sometimes individual educational sponsorship. In 2014, a toilet block with 2 pit latrines was built with donations from UCUK supporters.
Testimony of one of the parents: Musibikha Jenipher is a mother of 6 children and before some of her children joined Sakiya Prayer and Porridge Project, she said: They were sorrowful i.e. were lonely, could struggle to get food, had no clothing and bedding and would always be sent back home from school due to lack of scholastic materials like books. But after joining the project, their lives have changed. They have been loved, have friends, the scholastic materials have helped them be in school and having a porridge meal has improved the health of my children and they look nice now. As a parent I really appreciate the church activities and other learning sessions because their behaviour has changed and no cases of misconduct have been reported.
In December 2019, Education in Action Society based in Canada took over the basic funding of Sakiya which enabled us to fund a new Prayer & Porridge project at Lwangoli. We still visit Sakiya and have a great time playing with the children even though the sheer number of them can feel a bit overwhelming! It is so encouraging to see how such a modest but regular donation is having such a positive effect within the whole community.