Jackie Perkins, New South Wales Regional Meeting.
Invitation – to come with QSA staff on a STUDY TOUR TO UGANDA in November 2013.
This two week study tour is designed to provide participants with an introduction to the local communities that QSA has engaged with for many years. It will both give QSA’s project partners the opportunity to show case their work and will provide tour participants the chance to learn about development issues in Uganda through the eyes of our project partners and the local communities they work with.
This study tour will be an opportunity to familiarise you with, and experience, a new culture and country, to interact with new people both on the tour and those you meet in Uganda, and to engage in educational, socially responsible travel. It will also provide some economic benefit for the project partners we will be visiting. The tour will access local accommodation, restaurants and transport that are modest but comfortable and safe, and which supports local enterprises. Included in the costs will be a carbon offset match for all travel.
Members of the Wakiso District Union of People with Disabilities, one of QSA’s project partners attending a training workshop in organic farming held at the training centre of another QSA project partner – St Jude College of Organic Agriculture.
The tour will be a mix of visits to project partners St Jude and Wakiso District Union of Persons with Disability to see just how they run their training programs and what has been achieved. Many Friends will remember meeting the director of St Jude, Josephine Kizza, when she visited Australia – she is certainly a confident and impressive woman. The Training Centre has accommodation where the study tour will stay for a few days so participants can experience and learn about the daily life of rural small holder farmers as well as the broader challenges and work of St Jude.
It is hoped that tour participants will feel able to share some of their skills and expertise with project participants, whether this is via some painting, feeding the animals, potting up seedlings or some other role in which we can work together and share ideas and experiences. There will be opportunities to meet some of the schools who have received training form St Jude staff, and been able to grow food to supplement their midday meals and breakfasts.
The other partner the tour will be meeting is the Wakiso District Union of People with Disabilities. This is a new project partner, but they are equally keen to meet everyone and show what they have been doing.
Other activities on the tour will be spending some time exploring the countryside, including an overnight stay in a small game reserve, a boat trip to some islands in Lake Victoria, standing astride the equator, see the source of the River Nile, and learning how to dance Ugandan style – very energetic but great fun!
If you would like to see first-hand the impact of QSA’s project partners in Uganda, please contact Kate Bandler in the QSA office at firstname.lastname@example.org. It will only be a small group that goes, so that there are opportunities to meet with and not overwhelm the project partners and participants.
Health Drink Program in Tamil Nadu, South India
Part of the project QSA is supporting with Pitchandikulam Forest in Tamil Nadu, South India, involves supporting the most marginalised community members. Children who record a low height and weight level for their age are also tested for low iron levels and general poor nutrition. If considered suitable for the program they are given a twice daily nourishing drink to boost their nutritional input. Already their academic performance has achieved a noted improvement as their nutrition increases. The drink is a combination of herbs, gains, nuts and seeds, initially all purchased locally, and now are being grown on farmland close to the school to ensure greater freshness but also reduction in costs. Currently two hundred and three school children from three schools have been selected, of whom 135 participated in the program last year. Sixty eight children are new to the program. In addition some elderly members of the community who are without family for support are also given nutritional support. On a regular basis, height, weight and haemoglobin levels are recorded to monitor the impact, and the following chart shows the impact over a three month timeframe.
|Name of School||Total number of Children||Gender||Height/WeightHealth improved||Balanced healthstatus||Absent|
|Nadukuppam High School||50||22||28||19||9||3||19||–||–|
|Nadukuppam Primary School||114||42||72||12||23||30||45||–||4|
|Devikulam Primary School||24||16||8||14||7||2||1||–||–|
|Devikulam ElderlyPeople||15||3 male||12 Fe-males||–||–||–||–||–||–|
Note: The four girls from the tribal community enrolled at Nadukuppam Primary School are not coming to school regularly.
Some of the children in Nadukuppam School receiving their morning healthy drink
Friends are reminded that the tax year ends soon, and donations to QSA to enable its projects to continue can be made to the office at 119 Devonshire Street, Surry Hills NSW 2010. Direct credit details can be obtained by emailing John Dundas at email@example.com and donations received by June 30th for the Overseas Aid or Aboriginal Concerns Funds will be eligible for tax deductibility to offset against income tax this financial year.