A woman using a wheelchair, sitting outside.
A woman using a wheelchair, sitting outside.

Photo © Sightsavers

Norah

'We do not have money to get basics; we have had challenges getting food'

As people with disabilities, access to financial support is hard. Before COVID-19, we were selling things at home such as groundnuts and beans and would get money from the sales, but now we are unable to sell these items in the nearby trading centre markets and Masindi town. Due to the restrictions on market gathering and public transport, movement to markets became hard and we could not sell anything.

The coronavirus has affected me and my family – it has strained us financially. We do not have money to get basics; we have had challenges [in getting] food. We cannot go to town because cars have been restricted. This restriction in movement has affected us from going to the gardens in far villages to dig, so we have to stay at home.

Women with disabilities are facing increased challenges, because (for example) when they become sick with malaria, they are unable to access treatment because of movement challenges.

The biggest challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic for me? I was going to save money to help me with all my needs, but that has not been possible. I had planned to plant a garden of groundnuts, but this all failed because I do not have money to buy groundnut seeds to plant. My plan was to harvest these groundnuts and buy a television so I can watch news and other programmes but now this has all failed. It is all gone.

The European Commission funded Sightsavers' economic empowerment programme in Uganda from 2012-2020, and additional funding was awarded in August 2017 by the National Lottery Community Fund. This generous support has helped to transform the lives of hundreds of young people with disabilities in Uganda.

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