Uganda Red Cross Society delivers support to Kasese floods affected Victims.

Thursday, 28 May 2020 14:25 Written by
Red Cross & Uganda Government officials handing over relief kit to one
of the Kasese floods victims

On May 10th, 2020, amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, communities living around Mt. Rwenzori suffered a double tragedy when heavy rains caused massive destruction to property and lives. The banks of rivers Nyamwamba and Mubuk burst and caused flooding to nearby households, hospitals, gardens and destroyed livelihoods.

Kilembe mines hospital too was destroyed and a number of households were displaced. Today, over 1500 households are displaced and live in makeshift arrangements.

Uganda Red Cross quickly moved in to support the affected families by offering emergency evacuations, first aid to the affected, transfer of people and property to safer areas, and mobilized relief food and nonfood items for the affected families.

MTN Uganda foundation too joined Red Cross efforts and contributed 100 Non Food Item (NFI) kits, as part of the lifesaving efforts towards the affected people. Today, Uganda Red Cross has given relief to 250 households with a population of 1750 people.

Baluku Sanansiyo carrying his relief items from the distribution site

The donated standard nonfood item kit contained 2 cooking pots, 2 Jerricans, 6 cups, 6 plates, 1 Knife, 1 Ladle, 3 blankets, 3 bars of laundry soap, 1 TARPAULIN, 3 Mosquito Nets LLITN, 1 solar lamp, 1 mat, and 1 20ltr bucket.

While engaging the Kasese District local government officials, Uganda Red Cross Secretary General Robert Kwesiiga noted that due to advancement in technology today, the floods were fore seen and a team of risk early warning and early action Volunteers in Kasese were dispatched to alert people about what was due to come. Kwesiga added that “As Uganda Red Cross we have been in Kasese working on other problems like Ebola as well as sensitizing the community about the COVID19 pandemic. The heavy rains were predicted early this year and we issued alerts. This is probably why we have not registered any deaths. While the devastation was much to property, at least no life was lost.”

Brigadier Stephen Oluka who represented the government of Uganda (Office of the Prime Minister) appreciated the Uganda Red Cross for always being fast responders. “Uganda Red Society cross has supported even other places like Bududa. I once thought that I was always the first to reach the ground when a disaster hit, but Uganda Red Cross disproved me when I got at the scene of disaster in a place where we thought nobody had reached and found the team already on ground. So as Government, we thank Red Cross for training teams that are fast and save lives always in case of any disasters.” Oluka added.

Uganda Red Cross Volunteers setting up the ground ahead of the
distribution

On a similar note, Lt. Walusimbi Joe, the Resident District Commissioner (RDC) Kasese district thanked Uganda Red Cross Society and MTN Uganda for extending support to the people of Kasese especially during this trying time of the COVID 19 pandemic, floods and uncertainty.

Sanacio Baluku, one of the victim of the floods and beneficiary of the relief appreciated the support that came in very timely considering that they were stuck. “On the day floods hit our village, most of us were left with nothing but we thank Uganda Red Cross Society that helped us to secure shelter at Kasese Primary school, and also for what they have brought for us to use in our day to day lives”. Baluku smiled.

It should be noted Kasese district is one of the disaster prone districts that constantly suffers massive floods effects whenever it rains. Rivers Nyamwamba and Mubuku over flow is felt as an outburst in the nearby communities, causing a lot of suffering to the people.

Uganda Red Cross teams remain on ground to continue sensitizing the displaced people on how to keep safe from the COVID-19 amidst the challenges caused by floods in their communities.

L-R Uganda Red Cross , MTN Officials, Government and district leadership
pose for a photo at a relief distribution site in Kasese

You can also follow how East Africa has suffered triple ripple effects of COVU-ID-19, Locusts & Floods here

World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day 2020

Friday, 08 May 2020 23:10 Written by
Screening

World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day 2020: #KeepClapping for Uganda Red Cross volunteers

Kampala 8 May 2020 — On this World Red Cross and Red Crescent Day, Uganda Red Cross has dedicated this day to to recognize and appreciate the work of our volunteers and staff who are doing everything they can to support communities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. They are our frontline workers!

“We always say that the Uganda Red Cross is everywhere for everyone, every day,” said Robert Kwesiga, Secretary General.

“In 2020, this is more important than ever. Our volunteers are hard at work helping vulnerable individuals and communities to protect themselves from COVID-19, and we’re still providing many other services that people need to keep themselves safe and healthy. To an extent they put themselves in “harm’s way” in service to humanity.

“Each and every volunteer in Uganda deserves an applause, and we encourage everyone to #KeepClapping on 8 May.”

Handwashing Hygiene Promotion

Uganda Red Cross volunteers have been active in communities since the novel coronavirus was first detected: helping people to prepare, sharing life-saving health information to stop the spread of the disease, and working to limit its impact on the most vulnerable members of society. They have supported and continue to support the Government of Uganda to reach the most vulnerable people with food, moving from door to door across the country through the National #COVID-19 task force, and through district task forces. Our branch teams through their respective districts have been at the fore front, complementing government of Uganda efforts as guided by the Office of the Prime Minister.

The Red Cross teams are also supporting high risk border points through screening, risk communication, disinfection of heavy goods trucks, among other lifeline services offered, all meant to ensure that Uganda is safe from the Corona Virus.

The Ministry of Health in Uganda issued safety guidelines which our Volunteers have taken up to support crowded markets to ensure adherence as a way of securing the health of the people. Thank you #Volunteers. All the above services have been carried out alongside the work Uganda Red Cross is well known for in Uganda. Every year, we reach more than 2,000,000 people with a diverse range of services tailored to local needs, such as access to safe and clean water, first aid and emergency lifesaving services, disaster response through provision of food and nonfood relief items, disease prevention and infection control through sensitization, Refugee response among others.

Safe and Dignified burials

Robert Kwesiga, Red Cross Secretary General said: “We may not be physically close during this time of social distancing, but we will always be here for you.

“This is a difficult time for everyone, but I see so much hope in the bravery and dedication of not only our volunteers, but also that of the millions of volunteers and staff members in other 191 countries around the world. This global solidarity will help the world not only survive this pandemic, but also help it to thrive afterwards.

And as disasters and emergencies like the floods, landslides that lead to loss of life, destruction of property, livelihoods, exposing affected communities to Water and sanitation challenges including water borne diseases as experienced in Kasese, Bundibugyo and Ntoroko yesterday start to threaten lives; we still commit to supporting people affected with the resources put to our disposal.

We also have gathered information from 20 other districts affected by adverse climate change effects. We re-emphasize our humanitarian call to serving humanity, while leaving no one behind.

Food distribution

Uganda Red Cross, your partner of choice in saving lives, restoring livelihoods and promoting human dignity.

Uganda Red Cross complements Government Interventions in Food Distribution across Kampala.

Wednesday, 08 April 2020 15:54 Written by
Red Cross Teams in Field food distribution exercise

On Saturday 4th April, 2020, Government of Uganda started food distribution to vulnerable people in Kampala district affected by the COVID-19 Pandemic. The exercise was commissioned by the Hon. Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda, who is also the chair / heads Uganda’s Coronavirus Response Team for relief food distribution campaign.

According to the Government of Uganda, the pilot was to be done in Bwaise, one of the Kampala suburbs and would proceed to Wakiso, which is another high risk district for the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Many people were affected by the nationwide lock down, they have no food among other pressing basic needs. We will do the test run in Bwaise and later scale up to all areas affected, resources permitting.”

Uganda Red Cross through their technical team led by Paul Okot, the Emergency Response Manager noted the need to prioritize the most vulnerable people considering the available resources that Government fronted. “We used sphere standards and local experience we have over time in distributing relief to develop standard operating procedures, determine how government will select the vulnerable and how distribution should be done. Beneficiaries will be given sugar, milk, maize flour and beans.” Okot said.

Team Planning ahead of the Food distribution.

Okot further added that Red Cross plays an auxiliary role to Government authorizes during such emergencies. “The Red Cross teams will support in activities like beneficiary registration, food distribution and hand washing / hygiene promotion, risk communication and offering pyscho-social support to those who will need such services”.

The Prime Minister emphasized that areas in Kampala and Wakiso districts were given priority considering the high rate of confirmed cases of COVID-19. Other districts will likely be supported if resources are available. He also offered other distribution guidelines which included having food relief distribution done from house to house/ door to door, as a way of ensuring social distancing and avoiding crowds.

“We do not want crowds. We also want absolute transparency, absolute accountability. Anybody who will go against this will be provoking the wrath of the law to take its course,” he added.

Uganda Red Cross co-chairs the vulnerable groups’ sub-committee which is chaired by the Hon. Prime Minister and the same sub-committee is responsible for relief Food distribution.

The Security Officers offloading food at the distribution site on Day 1
(Saturday 4th April, 2020)

Other Insights

On 31st December 2019, the Government of China reported a cluster of cases of pneumonia of unknown cause in Wuhan, Hubei Province. A novel coronavirus was identified and has been named COVID-19. On 30 January, World Health Organization (WHO) declared the COVID-19 outbreak a public health emergency of international concern. All continents have now reported at least one confirmed case of COVID-19, and the risk of continued spread between and within countries is very high.

Europe is now the epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak. Many European countries have closed their borders and imposed movement restrictions on their populations. The number of COVID-19 cases in the world has surpassed cases in China.

The Case of Uganda Today, Uganda has 52 confirmed cases of COVID-19. A cumulative 3,310 samples have been tested.

The number of individuals in institutional quarantine has reduced from original 1040 to 613.

427 have been discharged and 855 contact cases of confirmed cases are under follow up.

The confirmed cases are being supported, attended and in stable conditions, responding to medication steadily. They are admitted at Mulago National Referral hospital (20), Entebbe grade B Hospital (30), Adjumani hospital (1) and Hoima hospital (1).

Red Cross teams registering beneficiaries

Special Notes

Uganda is progressing on tracking cases of people who may not be scoring well on self-quarantine procedures. The Ministry of Health is calling upon people to remain calm, practice safety guidelines as we together fight the COVID-19 Pandemic. The government of Uganda has put a number of restrictions to serve as safety guidelines in a bid to realise the health security of the people.

For more Information:

• Irene Nakasiita - Communications & Public Relations Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (0755000695)

• Dr. Josephine Okwera – Director Health & Social Services Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (0780 430189)

Contact: Facebook: Uganda Red Cross Society Twitter: @ugandaredcross Instagram: UgandaRedCross

Uganda Red Cross Public Statement on Coronavirus Disease 2019

Monday, 30 March 2020 22:21 Written by
Guiding people to do proper handwashing

Uganda Red Cross Public Statement on Coronavirus Disease 2019 March 28th, 2020 The Uganda Red Cross is closely monitoring the evolving situation of the outbreak of the Corona Virus disease (COVID-19) in Uganda and is involved in carrying out lifesaving interventions which among others include risk communication, Community surveillance, Screening, hygiene promotion, ambulance services and referrals, psychosocial support to the affected, and is prepared to carry out safe and dignified burials in worst case scenarios.

As an auxiliary to the Government of Uganda during such emergencies, the National Society is working closely with the Ministry of Health to undertake the said interventions. With support from partners like MTN Foundation Uganda, a number of lifeline services have been activated around the Market areas in the Capital City Kampala and these include Temperature screening for all people accessing the markets, hand washing facilities installed, availing clean and safe water (chlorinated) for hand washing, isolation tents set up to manage susceptible cases, among other #Keepsafe measures.

“Our Red Cross machinery of first responds has been put at the disposal of the pandemic and we believe with combined efforts and support we can save lives of people”. Said Robert Kwesiga, the Uganda Red Cross Secretary General.

Teaching people how to effectively wash hands

Uganda Red Cross has presented a COVID-19 response Plan of action to the Ministry of Health Task force, well aligned to Government plans to combat the Pandemic.Red Cross ambulances have been deployed to work alongside Government machinery in response across the country. We believe such combined efforts, well-coordinated can go a long way in saving people’s lives.

We continue to work closely the Ministry of Health and the Uganda Blood Transfusion Services to also ensure the safety and availability of blood supply for patients in need. We encourage all eligible blood donors to schedule appointments or move to the nearest blood banks / blood collection centers and donate blood to avoid blood shortages during this tough season.

Donating blood is a safe process and people should not hesitate to give or receive blood. The need for blood is constant, and volunteer donors are the only source of blood for those in need of transfusions. Therefore, our appeal to the public is to keep safe and donate blood when you are due.

Hand Washing Facilities Set Up to support hygiene Promotion

In other districts outside Kampala, the Red Cross volunteers are supporting communities though disseminating good practices of how they can protect their families from getting sick, educating them on how to mitigate the spread of this COVID-19 virus, hygiene promotion, fighting rumors and stigma, among other lifeline services.

The National Society is doing resource mobilization to be able to reach out to more places across the Country to ensure that more lives are saved and communities receive the basic services they require to cope through this situation.

Resources:

You can Visit the Ministry of Health Portal on COVID-19 for further details https://www.health.go.ug/covid/

Visit our social media sites for Updates on our COVID-19 interventions

Temperature Screening for all people who access the crowded market areas

Contact:

For more Information:

  • Irene Nakasiita - Communications & Public Relations Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (0755000695)
  • Dr. Josephine Okwera – Director Health & Social Services Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (0780 430189)

Twitter: @UgandaRedCross

Facebook Uganda Red Cross Society

Instagram: UgandaRedCross

Page 1 of 2

URCS Contacts

Plot 551/555 Rubaga Road.
P.O. Box 494, Kampala Uganda.
Tel:     (256) 414 258701
Tel:     (256) 414 258702
Email: sgurcs@redcrossug.org

NEWSLETTER

Join our email newsletter. It's fast and easy. You will be among the first to know about what's happening at Uganda Redcross Society.