The impact of the long dry spell: Share your experience

Uganda is in a crisis. The Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF) announced recently that 1.5m people in Uganda need food relief. In some regions, such as Karamoja, up to 65%of the population has access to one meal or half a meal a day. Out of the country’s 116 districts, only 28 are fairly food secure, meaning that 76% of the districts are at high risk of starvation. This situation follows a long dry spell that has adversely affected food production throughout the country.

Due to a lack of rain, crops have dried in the gardens, swamps have dried, and in the cattle corridor, animals are dying because of water and food scarcity. And the impacts of the prolonged drought go beyond the shortage of food and pastures to humans and domestic animals. The impacts extend to businesses, and social sectors such as education and health.

Are you a science journalist? Are you a science communicator? Are you a keen observer of the environmental situation in your locality? We are asking you to share with us stories and pictures about the situation where you are. This could be about the impact of the dry spell to the life around you, or about how people are coping with the situation.

Selected pictures and stories shall be shared via our website and social media platforms and this is intended to trigger action from different stakeholders. Send your story to wbodinga@hotmail.com Please remember to include your name, title where necessary and the place where your story or picture is coming from.

Rashid Kaizi of Ndejje

Rashid Kaizi lives in Ndejje, Luweero district. He is a smallholder farmer. The long dry spell, however, has made it impossible for him to farm. During this period, he is occupying himself with brick making in a swamp in Kikoola village, about three kilometres from his home. Water is now very scarce in Ndejje after the nearby sources dwindled because of the the dry spell. Every day in the morning Kaizi carries with him two empty jerrycans on his motorcycle to the swamp. After work, he fills his jerrycans from this well near the swamp and rides home. The family has to use this water sparingly.

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