Tags / Resource Shortage
Like all other teachers in Young Cranes Primary School, Moreen Nakiboneka teaches in English, a historical nod to Uganda's colonial past. She is a recent graduate from university, and confided that while she loves teaching, the pay, only $150 a month, isn't enough for her to make ends meet. She does, however, command the respect of the village elders and her students.
Early in the morning, Nico, Teo, Tina, Nakato and Eva of Conde Hill Orphanage run to school. Many have lost family because of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Uganda. Teo and Tina, for example, are 8 year-old twin girls who were homeless for two years after losing their family to HIV/AIDS. Conde Hill founder Gideon Mubiru, who lost 37 of his 39 siblings to HIV/AIDS, took them in. Over time Tina had grown to be skeptical of outsiders, so the members of Conde Hill had a tough challenge to overcome. Furthermore, Teo has a mental disability that places her a year behind her sister. Because of support from local charity Gideon Anti-AIDS Foundation (GAAF), these students are given the chance to attend school each day. Slowly, students like Tina and Teo can learn to smile again in the wake of this new educational opportunity. GAFF covers the cost of housing, food and uniforms for the students.
Students take a break between lessons in Young Cranes Primary. While education is universal, fees for meals, supplies and uniforms still place a large financial burden on many families.
Teo (left) and Tina (right) can be playful, but Tina is still very protective of her sister.
Chalk slates are used by many of the students, another symptom of resource shortages. Relative to incomes, notebooks can prove to be costly.
A brief break in between lessons leads to some curious looks by the students. The classroom of second primary, while suffering from a chronic lack of resources, is brought to life by the laughs and shouts of the students.
Young Cranes Primary consist of three tin roofed brick building and adjoining thatched straw rooms. As many as 70% percent of rural schools lack adequate classrooms, and lessons are often held outside.
The literacy rate in Uganda is high for youth (15-24 years), standing at almost 90%, but dips to 73% for adults.
Education is highly valued in Uganda, and the government's aim to offer universal access to primary and secondary education reflect this. However, the delivery of programs is marred by resource and personnel shortages. Additionally, more than 1.5 million youth will not enter secondary school each year.