Update on Faith
Last week, Daniel traveled to Faith’s village to check on her and meet some of her family members. As you can see, Faith and her family are in good spirits and are very grateful for the money we sent her! Watch the videos below to hear more!
Faith is back in her home village. She and her sister Scovia had been staying at Daniel’s home in Kampala, waiting for Faith to be evaluated for additional surgeries. However, when Daniel took Faith for evaluation in late December, doctors recommended that Faith wait two months before more surgeries so that her neck and eyelid could fully heal. When Faith returns to the hospital in March, she will have another surgery on her neck (to release the remainder of the scarred tissue), her mouth, and her left eye.
Because of your support, Daniel has been able to continue purchasing antibiotic and other medications to help in Faith’s recovery. He also purchased a bus ticket for Faith and Scovia to return home, and purchased soap, salt, and rice for her so she has some basics when she first gets back.
Daniel explained to us that Faith had been renting a small piece of land to cultivate crops, including g-nuts and maize. She had been selling the little she grew to help support herself and her five children. In between harvesting seasons, she worked on others’ farms as a way to earn some money. Daniel and the RISE team talked at length about how best to support Faith in the coming months. We wanted our support to be consistent with previous programming (building into the long-term empowerment of survivors) while also taking into consideration Faith’s recent surgery and need for healing.
Daniel talked with Faith about ways we could support her in earning more money, so that she would not face food insecurity for herself or her children. Faith told us that with $150, she could rent one acre of land, hire someone to clear the land, purchase seedlings, and start growing beans, maize, cassava stems and g-nuts. In Daniel’s words, “She is very sure if God wishes, when the year gets done she could be having some good harvests and good money from that garden.”
Typically, RISE does not give money directly to survivors. (We have provided many microloans for survivors to expand their businesses, but we expect them to pay the money back.) We have avoided doing this because it can breed dependence rather than empowerment. However, given Faith is recovering from surgeries and has more surgeries planned in March, and given that she agreed to share her story so openly with all of us, we have decided that providing her with the $150 (without expectation of repayment) is a very reasonable thing to do, especially given it will set her up for future growth.
Leave a message of support for Faith
Thanks to those who donated, Faith (one of the survivors the Ugandan team met during data collection) was transported to Mulago Hospital, was evaluated by surgeons and has received surgery to release the contracture on her neck and to create eyelids using skin grafted from her stomach. Faith was attacked 20 years ago and had never received any type of medical support prior to this week. We are SO grateful to all of you for the donations & support! It’s an exciting but overwhelming time for Faith and we’d like to invite you to leave her a message of support. Our Ugandan team member Daniel is visiting her regularly and reading the updates to her and has told us that they are giving Faith a lot of hope in her recovery!