Uganda – Food distribution to vulnerable during lockdown in Uganda facing deadly 2nd Covid-19 wave

08 July 2021

(ANS – Kampala) – Uganda recently underwent and is still undergoing a difficult moment of a Covid-19 lockdown, due to its more deadly second wave. Most people in Uganda are no longer working because of the restrictions imposed by the government to contain the spread of the virus. In fact, the most affected people are children and their parents from very poor backgrounds who normally get their daily bread from their daily earnings. Currently, the situation of Covid-19 patients is still alarming. Health experts under the umbrella body Uganda Medical Association (UMA) have said that 80% of people infected with Covid-19 do not know they are infected. “As Salesians we couldn’t remain relaxed and comfortable as we witnessed many people suffering due to hunger.”

Fr Elie NYANDWI, SDB, Director of Don Bosco Namugongo, in the Capital of Uganda, Kampala, wrote on July 3:

These doctors have therefore advised the people who have tested positive but have no symptoms to avoid moving outside their homes unless when seeking medical care. For now, the hospitals - both private and public - are overcrowded. And the medical bill for the Covid-19 patients remains exorbitant whereby some private hospitals do not fear charging up to 5 million Uganda Shilling per day (1,500 USD).

Only a few rich people are able to raise such a big amount. That is why most of the Covid-19 patients remain at their homes and treat themselves with lemon juice mixed with ginger. These patients also do steaming using herbs and eucalyptus leaves.

At Don Bosco Namugongo, we have a eucalyptus plantation. These days, it is frequently visited by both Salesians and neighbors searching leaves for steaming. However, Covid-19 patients who take the antibiotics and vitamins C and D from their homes without a medical prescription are at higher risk of getting more dangerous health complications. That is why the death cases due to Covid-19 keep increasing day by day. 

Our Salesian community - with its limited resources - assist the poor during this critical moment by visiting and giving some food to the most vulnerable families. The Salesian Cooperators and other collaborators around our mission of Namugongo are joining the activity of feeding the poor. We have made a WhatsApp group where we share information about this activity. People of goodwill are giving generously the little they have, and those who do not give participate in distributing the food items to the needy. The most needed food items are for now: maize flour, beans and cooking oil. 

As for now, the situation has gone beyond our capacity. For instance, as of 1 July 2021, we tried to identify 50 of the most vulnerable families from our neighborhood to be assisted. These families couldn’t reach the community due to the restrictions imposed by the lockdown. We tried to organize some boda-bodas to deliver some food with beans and posho to them. We decided to offer 2 kg of beans and 2 kg of maize flour since the number kept increasing drastically. We also cut about 30 bunches of banana from our garden, with some vegetables (Sukuma Wiki) and shared with them. Hence, as Salesians with a big concern of what is happening, we take this opportunity to thank and appeal to all generous people who can participate and join us to help the needy in this period of lockdown.

May the Almighty God continue to bless those who give cheerfully and unsparingly.

Always trying to do what they can, meanwhile, this Tuesday morning the Salesians of Namugongo Community went around Bulindo and Mulawa, visiting the most vulnerable families. To each, 15 of them, we gave 5 kg of beans, 5 kg of posho, and some cassava.


ANS - “Agenzia iNfo Salesiana” is a on-line almost daily publication, the communication agency of the Salesian Congregation enrolled in the Press Register of the Tibunal of Rome as n 153/2007.

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