Dear Friends of Musana,

While the entire world has been turned upside down by COVID-19, it’s hard for nations to look outside their own borders at the implications this pandemic is having in places like Uganda. However, our Ugandan friends and families need us more than ever before. For the first time since 2008, we are asking our Musana family to rally beside us and give, not towards our sustainable model, but towards emergency relief as we start a COVID-19 Relief Fund. Today, we need you to give our communities in Uganda the means to survive!

As an organization, we believe sustainability is the foundation of good development practice. We do not believe in handouts and relief has not been a focus since our foundation twelve years ago. However, the repercussions of the global pandemic of COVID-19 are severe, and today, the people of Uganda lack basic provisions to survive. We need you to stand by us to ensure they do. The following is a brief description of what is happening in Uganda, how this impacts Musana, and what our COVID-19 Relief Fund is all about:

What is happening in Uganda?
A Lockdown– like most countries around the globe, at this time, all schools and non-essential businesses are closed. However, recently, more restrictions in Uganda have been made, including a two-week nation-wide lockdown. This means all transportation/movement is prohibited and people are to remain inside their homes. Why is this a problem? 80% of the labor force in Uganda is part of the informal sector, depending on daily income to provide for their families. Living hand to mouth, there is little ability to save and every day of work is a means to survive. Without work, Ugandans will go hungry. Furthermore, the majority of Ugandans rely on public transportation to seek dire health care. Without it, when Ugandans fall sick, they will not have the means to travel to receive life-saving care.

How this impacts Musana?
In response to the global pandemic and following the Ugandan government’s mandate, all Musana education and skill development programs are closed. Musana Community Health Center (MCHC) remains open to continue to provide life-saving services and cater to the demands of COVID-19 if it begins to spread in our community. However, with the recent stay at home order and prohibition of all transport, we are terrified for what this means for our Ugandan family, friends, and communities. They will suffer, they will go hungry, and many will die.

What Musana’s COVID-19 Relief Fund will do?
*Keep our 373 employees on payroll: Our employees are the breadwinners of their families, supporting an average of 5 dependents each. Although we will not have the local income to support salaries with the closure of our enterprises, we remain committed to provide for our staff during this time of need so they can take care of themselves and their families (supporting 1,865 people indirectly).

*Provide food packages for 1,000 families: In the weeks to come, we will work alongside the local government to provide food and essential supplies for the most vulnerable communities. This includes the families of our scholarship students as well as Musana neighbors.
*Provide transportation to health facilities: With no public or private transportation allowed, we will secure permission from the local government to provide a transportation service to and from Musana Community Health Center.

Relief Fund Proposed Budget

$30,000 to feed 1,000 families for a month
$58,000 to pay 373 employees for a month
$1,400 to provide transportation to and from MCHC

How can you help?
Keep our employees paid:
$150= 1 monthly salary (average)
$1,500= 10 monthly salaries
$15,000= 100 monthly salaries

Feed a family (or many!):
$30= feed 1 family for a month-$1 a day! (7 people)
$120= feed 4 families for a month (28 people)
$480=feed 16 families for a month (112 people)

Provide transportation to seek life-saving health care:
$50= Fuel for a day to transport patients to and from MCHC
$350= Fuel for a week to transport patients to and from MCHC
$1,400= Fuel for a month to transport patients to and from MCHC

(Note: The implementation of relief will be based on the need of the community and our collaboration with the local government. The proposed plan above is subject to change.)

We recognize that this is a trying time for everybody. Currently, you may not be in a position to give, and we understand. However, if you are feeling called and have the means, we ask that you stand with us. Our Ugandan communities need us, and more than ever before, together, we need to do something. We continue to pray for you, for yours, and for this world we live in.

Are you due a refund of Colorado taxes? Please consider donating some or all of it to Musana to support our COVID-19 Relief Fund. TurboTax or other tax software will walk you through the process. Simply enter the full name “Musana Community Development Organization” and the registration number 20113017468. If you fine on paper, you will need to include form 0104CH which requires the same information. For more information visit https://refundwhatmatters.org/