vulnerable households

Sarah’s hamper: two years on

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Despite the alarmingly mild winter we seem to be enjoying this year, the majority of us won’t be opting to camp out this holiday for the fun of it. The last time I was camping in Africa, the ground was hard, the cold was creeping and the mosquitos were relentless. It was a thoroughly miserable experience and not one I ever plan on repeating. Sadly, what was a mercifully brief episode for me, is a nightly reality for many around the world.

This Christmas, a little bit of HOPE is offering the opportunity to contribute to a hamper for a widow in Busolwe. A hamper includes a variety of items such as mattresses, mosquito nets, jerry-cans and bedding. This week, Sarah Kiyaga, a widow-farmer currently caring for five of her young grandchildren, shares her story and explains the importance of the Christmas hamper she received this month and the ways in which it has enhanced her life.

“Your gifts are very important in my life. I was provided with a Christmas hamper in which I got a mattress, a pair of bed sheets, a mosquito net and two jerry cans. These items have helped me in that I am now sleeping comfortably on a mattress instead of using the papyrus mat I had before. It was hard to get a proper rest witSARAH KIYAGAh a hard papyrus mat pressing my ribs. We share the pair of bed sheets which we use to cover-up at night to shield from the cold. I also got a blanket and I am using it daily. It is mainly very helpful during this rainy season when the night gets colder, it helps me feel warmer. The mosquito net has been very helpful as previously I used to be sickly with malaria, but due to the mosquito net I avoid mosquito bites that spread malaria and I am now living a healthier life… I rarely get malaria unlike in the past. The jerry cans have also been very helpful in that they eased collection and storage of water.  Before I used to just borrow from relatives and it was difficult as they also needed to fetch water… the queues were long at the water source.

I am very happy for the support. Now the condition of my life is good. I am healthy enough to do some garden work and for my family, and the grand children are also healthy and able to go to school daily and aim at a better future. When I look at the way I am benefiting from the gifts, I see myself living longer to see my grandchildren graduate. Thank you.”

We join Sarah in her gratitude to all of you who make this project possible and encourage those of you not yet involved to find out more at It’s a wonderful way of sharing in someone’s story and making their life more beautiful in practical ways. We wish you all a very happy Christmas and look forward to continuing this journey together in the New Year.