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Notes from the Field: How God Is Grace Ministry Made a Difference in Uganda

  • 3 min read

In various African countries, such as Uganda, an unfortunate scenario has become all too common: many women are uneducated, betrothed or married at a young age, or abandoned or widowed and left fully responsible for the care of their children. These women are left without strong support systems and are still expected to raise and educate many children, sometimes not even their own. These circumstances, coupled with a lack of resources, have forced a cycle of poverty on these women. God Is Grace Ministry, part of Kelly Green Global, seeks to break this cycle of poverty by giving women tools and training that will allow them to raise themselves out of poverty.

“For just about every woman we visit, light is an issue for her.” - Beth Green, U. S. Coordinator for God Is Grace Ministry

Every summer, God Is Grace visits the women they sponsor in their homes in Uganda. Over the years, the organization has realized that lack of light was an issue for almost every woman they spoke to. Before receiving LuminAID lights, women had to risk their safety in order to buy paraffin wax for their lamps in order to have any form of portable light. Two thirds of these women have no husband, so as the pillars of their households their safety is of the utmost importance. In order to better aid and protect these women and their families, a better form of lighting was necessary. Keeping with God Is Grace’s mission to provide women with tools necessary for them to thrive, LuminAID’s solar lanterns provided the perfect solution to the lighting issues faced. The lanterns prevent women from endangering themselves in search for paraffin wax while also preemptively protecting homes from fires and pollution caused by paraffin lamps.

This past summer God Is Grace visited Uganda as a LuminAID nonprofit partner supported by our Subsidy Program, and ninety-eight women received a solar lantern for their homes. These women were incredibly grateful and joyous once they realized what the lantern would mean for their livelihood and their homes. According to the organization’s U.S. Coordinator, Beth Green, one woman leapt from her seat upon receiving her light, threw her hands in the air, and ran around the room saying, “Thank you God!”

These lamps provide a source of light at night, which has multiple positive impacts on these women’s lives. Whether it’s finishing business work, cooking for their children, doing household work, or simply changing a diaper, LuminAID’s solar lanterns allow these women to gain far more independence over their lives. They are no longer forced to prioritize one job over another and quite literally have more time to spend on each task without sacrificing their safety. Additionally, the solar lanterns not only strengthen the current generation of adults, but also empower the children of these women. These kids can accomplish homework assignments without dreading the setting sun, furthering the goal of lifting these families out of poverty.

These women were incredibly grateful and joyous once they realized what the lantern would mean for their livelihood and their homes.

LuminAID is incredibly proud that our lights are able to create such a difference in the lives of those who need them the most, and that the lights are met with such joy. In fact, we are told that even monkeys love our lights! Green reported how one unfortunate woman had her lantern stolen by a monkey! “As I was told this story, I could just see this happy monkey thinking he had gotten something really special! Later, I wondered if he had gotten the light on!”

 

Learn more about LuminAID's Subsidy Program