WhatsApp Image 2016-11-22 at 10.03.51

One of the central functions of Support for The Elderly Person (STEP), one of our incredible partner projects, is organising elderly people in local areas into groups so that they can work together to support themselves. The members of the groups don’t have family that can support them so they must help each other in order to survive.

Following the success of the pigs project, a wonderful project that saw runners from #UGM2015 build a piggery for one of the STEP elderly groups and then runners from #UGM2016 extend it for more pigs. We are so excited to announce our latest project with another of the STEP elderly groups!

The Ssaza elderly group, from the village that sits between the Athlete’s Village and Masaka town, are being gifted a cow to raise and farm so that they can generate an income for their group. Animal farming is a very good way to gain income in the local area and it is an occupation that can be done by the elderly members of the group. This cow should serve as an excellent long-term source of revenue for the group so that they can support the elderly members. We are also using UGM funds to build a cow enclosure (seen above), so that the members are able to keep and farm the cow effectively in their age.

We are expecting this project to change the lives of not only this Ssaza group, but many other groups in the Masaka region. Part of this agreement is that the first female calf that is bred by this cow is passed on to another elderly group so that they can benefit equally from this project. Thus, this initial investment is going to impact hundreds of elderly folk around Masaka, for decades to come.

Here are the committee from the Ssaza elderly group talking about the hardship they face and their excitement for the dairy cow.

“Chairman

Samuel Jackson – Information

Ssolongo – Treasurer of the group

Charles – Secretary

Eldest member

Member

Florence – Vice Chairperson

This is our group. We are members of the elders group of the area. We decided to start this group in order to help each other. Us elders, the oldest people in the area, we find it difficult to help each other as we have different types of problems, such as being old, problems, sickness, looking after our families, some of our members are widows, others are widowers with grandchildren. So we decided to form the group in order to be able to be a community and help each other. For example, we have members who are so old and others are sick. So During Christmas time we came together to try to gather something little in order to assist our members.

We are one of the lucky groups because we got to see the Uganda Marathon, they came to our meeting to assist us with our project. We are going to have a project of looking after cows. The Uganda Marathon gave us money and we are going to start our project right here where we are standing.

The land belongs to two of our members so we didn’t have to hire or buy the land. So this is where our project is going to be, we are going to raise a cow”

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