Message from Secretary General addressing 2nd Issue
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Message from Secretary General addressing 2nd Issue Message from Secretary General addressing 2nd Issue

Mr. Robert Kwesiga the Secretary
General Uganda Red Cross Society

Dear Readers and Colleagues, It is a pleasure to address you in our 2nd Issue of ‘The Humanitarian'. This is our second publication in this year 2019. I appreciate your support and commitment to our cause of saving the lives of the most vulnerable.The Uganda Red Cross Society is always proud to associate and participate in life-saving activities. I am happy to report that the National Society was appreciated at the recent National Road Safety Summit which took place at Sheraton Hotel Kampala on the 23rd July 2019. This was organized by a consortium of partners that work closely with the Ministry of Transport What an encouragement to motivate us to continue delivering on this cause!

I also want to appreciate partners through the Ministry of Health who have worked with us to respond and contain the Ebola out that claimed 3 lives in Kasese. The preparedness efforts we had in place enabled the country to arrest the epidemic in a very short period of time. Thanks to the Ministry of Health for great coordination. It is over 42 days since the outbreak and now Uganda is Ebola free. We, however, continue to heighten surveillance at all levels.

In our previous issue, we introduced you to our Keep A Girl In School Campaign, an initiative to support the vulnerable girls to access Menstrual hygiene kits. Through your support, we have availed girls sanitary Pads and the initiative has been introduced in schools with the highest rate of school dropouts as per the Ministry of Education report. Thanks to our Good Will Ambassadors championing the cause, our partners and all people of Uganda who have and continue donating towards this cause. We are excited about the impact this has on the Girl-child in Education, their dignity in society and more so, how men have responded in solidarity.

Early August 2019, we will hit the road to Eastern Uganda and support about 6 schools in Mayuge district. Keep donating, all support will be accounted for. Lastly, allow me to share an update on the side of disasters.

This past quarter has been a busy one for our Disaster and Risk Management Program, especially with the recent heavy rains. Our teams immediately responded to up to five major emergencies that occurred in this last quarter. The heavy rains precipitated a damaging hailstorm in Buyende and Kamuli, more landslides in Bududa, flooding in, Bundibugyo, Mbale, Sironko, Butaleja and Makindye, in Kampala. We also had a coffee house collapse in at the Namirembe Guest House. Our immediate response and help on these scenes helped mitigate some of the damage and ease residents' fears. Our office and volunteers are on high alert as the heavy rains continue to threaten the residents of Bundibugyo with more flooding. Thanks to our on-ground volunteers and response action teams (RCATs) who are always ready and willing to step up immediately.

The Uganda Red Cross emergency team has distributed relief non-food items, offered psychosocial support to affected families, ensured that people access the information they need to keep safe. As a society mandated to save lives, through our community resilience, we partner with the Uganda Meteorological Department, the office of the Prime Minister to develop strategies to deal with climate change in the most affected communities.

Relatedly, we embarked on the process of revising the Uganda Red Cross Act of Parliament (Cap 57, 1964) to align the Act to the evolving humanitarian mandates of Red Cross. URCS met with Members of Parliament to streamline the new bill that will be presented to the Parliament for enactment.

The objective of the bill is to provide for the continued existence and relevance of the Uganda Red Cross Society as the sole National Red Cross Society in Uganda and for its management and operationalization.

We have had the new Central Governing Board settle in and will champion and spear Head this strategic process under the guidance of the Legal Advisor and support from the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC). Other developments are shared in the publication, I encourage you to read on and appreciate the details herein.

Cheers!

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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

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