Matuwa Primary & Nursery School
The village of Lukhonge in Mbale district, eastern Uganda, suffers from a high prevalence of orphaned or abandoned children. In response to the pressing needs of local orphans, the Lukhange Yetana Group, a group of women in the local community who are engaged in poverty alleviation, took action to establish the Mutuwa Nursery and Primary School in 2004.
Orphans are amongst the most vulnerable young people in Uganda today. There are over 2.4 million orphaned children in Uganda, the majority of whom orphaned by HIV/AIDS (Uganda Poverty Status Report, 2010). Orphans contribute to a rise in the proportion of child-headed households, where they prematurely take on responsibility for their siblings, as well as child labour. As a result, the orphans are often deprived of their childhoods, sufficient nutrition, and educational opportunities.
Due to popular demands from parents, the school has grown from a small nursery class to a primary school. The growing attendance indicates the school's success in encouraging more families to send their children for formal education. It has grown to become a trusted institution providing quality education for ninety-six children, of which thirty-one are orphans.
Mutuwa equips children with the basic knowledge and skills which will help them compete equally with others, and thus advocates self-reliance. Mutuwa also instils sound morals and encourages community service, allowing children to develop into productive and responsible citizens.
Afrinspire has identified Mutuwa as a key partner because of the quality of care, education, vision, and attitude of the founder and teachers, and the evident support from the local communities. Afrinspire sponsors children's school fees, which in turn can be managed by the school as part of their budget.