‘We Can Now Afford to Dream Again’ - How You Helped Humanists in Uganda

October 8, 2014

HALEA 

This past summer, we asked you to help us lend a hand to our humanist allies in Uganda, the Humanist Association for Leadership, Equity, and Accountability. HALEA’s offices, located in the slums of Kamapala, were robbed, during which a security guard was severely beaten (and who is now recovering well, I’m happy to say), and the offices were stripped of everything of value: computers, cameras, phones, printers, microphones, power cords, media players, and more. 

In response, we activated our SHARE program, the Skeptics and Humanists Aid and Relief Effort, to help them get back on their feet. Other freethought groups lent their support as well. You made a real difference, raising over $6000 for their rebuilding efforts

HALEA is an active and determined group, in a city where superstition, crime, and violence are intertwined. They’re doing all they can to help unemployed, pregnant, and other at-risk teenagers in some of the most difficult and dangerous parts of the city, on top of holding intellectual discussions and debates about religion and church-state separation. 

We’ve been in frequent contact with Kato Mukasa, head of HALEA’s Youth Support Center, and he gave us permission to share with you one of his messages to us, where he expresses his gratitude and fills us in on his group’s plans and progress. If you gave to the SHARE campaign for HALEA, here you’ll get an idea of the good your contribution is doing. Here’s some of what Kato had to say:

Kato

We are grateful for the support, care and commitment CFI has extended to HALEA. … We have not withdrawn the money yet, we are to have a meeting and brainstorm on the best way to utilize the donation from CFI, we want to ensure that it helps HALEA get stronger. … We are now confident that we shall be much more stronger and we want to have the best utilization of the realized money. We shall replace some of the assets we need immediately and we shall keep on updating you on every progress we make. Then, in a board meeting, we shall discuss how best to utilise any money that will be available after purchasing all the necessary equipments. …

We have bigger plans to have a sustainable organization that will outlast us, the individuals who started it. For example, since the start of this year,  we have been  raising money from our HALEA members with a purpose of  securing a piece of land and start on a journey to have our own permanent office and home, because rent in Kampala is too high…

We also want to start an entrepreneurship training centre that will enable young mothers who do not want to go to formal schools learn skills such as hairdressing, shoe making, tailoring etc. These are some of our plans future plans that can be implemented in case we got support. ...

Once again, allow me extend my sincere appreciation to you all, thanks to team CFI , HALEA can now afford to dream again. Please spare some time and check our website, we have new and exciting updates and videos, the latest video on separation of state and church may be of much interest to many free thinkers. ...

My thanks to everyone, thanks for your kindness, we are very grateful.

All of us at CFI are delighted to see HALEA doing so well after such a terrible turn of events. We’ll continue to be in contact and find ways to work together, including through our CFI-Uganda branch.

Thank you, Kato, for all that you and HALEA are doing!

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