Grandmother overcomes challenges to farm the land that feeds the children in her care
Lovina Najjuma, a 56-year-old widow in Uganda, grows enough food on eight acres to feed the three children and eight orphaned grandchildren in her care.
Without the crops that spring from this soil she carefully tends, Najjuma has no means to support these children.
However, while Najjuma was providing the nurture her children and grandchildren needed, her in-laws ordered her to leave the land her husband had inherited.
Fortunately, Najjuma learned that laws were in place to protect widows like her. Your One Great Hour of Sharing Gifts empowered Naijuma to exercise her lawful right to remain on the property.
Empowered to Stay and Tend Her Crops
Thanks to training programs held by Action for Rural Women’s Empowerment (ARUWE), a partner of the Presbyterian Hunger Program, Najjuma knew the law was on her side. She successfully appealed for help through local land governance structures. Yet too often widows aren’t aware of their rights, says Sylvia Nalubega, program officer for ARUWE.
“When widows do not know their entitlement to their property or if the husband doesn’t leave a will, many times they are evicted and have nowhere to go,” Sylvia says. One Great Hour of Sharing gifts helped Naijuma avoid this fate.
“Najjuma depends on the land for her livelihood,” says Agnes Mirembe, programs manager for ARUWE. “It is everything to her. Her income is tied to the land.”
Providing Legal Aid and Farming Techniques
In addition to benefitting from ARUWE’s legal aid clinics, Naijuma also learned more efficient farming techniques from this group. She planted two acres of corn and beans that serve as demonstration plots for her neighbors. She freely shares how she was able to increase crop yields and take better care of her children and grandchildren.
Yet Najjuma could have been without a place to plant even a single seed, a plight that would have spelled disaster for her family. Your One Great Hour gifts helped keep this from happening.
In Uganda and around the world, Presbyterians are being faithful to the biblical mandate to care
for people who live on the margins. Through your One Great Hour of Sharing gifts, Christ’s concern for “the least of these” is being expressed and lives are being transformed.
Let Us Pray:
We pray for the widows in Africa who struggle to provide for their families. We give thanks that you walk with them in their quest for justice, and we hear your call to come alongside people who live on the margins. May we be faithful to your summons. Amen.
For more information and resources related to the One Great Hour of Sharing offering, visit presbyterianmission.org/oghs .
This post is based on the minute for mission script which can be found on our website as a script.
Please give generously to the Offering:
- Through your congregation
- Text OGHS to 20222 to give $10