The population of the Karamoja Region in Uganda has grown considerably in the past 20 years. At the same time the population of the wild elephants has also grown much quicker than expected. This is causing a real disaster because these elephants choose to raid these remote villages’ gardens and crops.

There has been a lot of contention between the people and the elephants. Some farmers’ retaliation have gone as far as killing these elephants. At the same time the elephants during their raidings, have mutilated, injured, and killed villagers trying to protect their necessary food to sustain their lives in the most humblest of ways.

Another factor is reluctancy of the government to intervene on behalf of the people, because of conflict of interest in favor of preserving wild life. Tourism is very important in the national economy and Uganda’s wildlife protection is highly regarded.

Elephants have seasons they trek from one region to another even across country borders to Sudan, Kenya and or Ethiopia. Two of the villages RABS serves are in Kaabong and they are close to the national park and along the corridor that elephants pass through. In Moroto it’s mainly one village, Musaasi, that is disturbed by these animals.

This is a known problem and there are experts who have been trying in different ways to stop these elephants from raiding the gardens and the crops of the nearby remote villages. They have used planting crops that the elephants do not desire along the borders of the farmers’ fields. National parks where the population of elephants have quadrupled have some fencing, but hungry elephants do not respect boundaries.

Another attempt that’s being practiced is digging deep ditches around the fields of the farmers. It’s a good idea but what has been found is that it is the farmers who have to do the laborious work of digging these deep ditches, not only is it time consuming it is also very expensive. Some of the cost has been covered by different associations, but in reality most of these ditches do not deter the determined wild elephants. In fact there have been some elephants who have become injured and trapped in these ditches which is inhumane.

Until we find a solution where there can be cohabitation between man and elephant we must do our very best to take care of the villagers and most especially the thousands and thousands of small children in these remote and rural areas.

In the past there has been International associations and nonprofits that have come to the aid of the Karamoja region to assist through Medical Care and food for these that are in desperate situations. As I said there have been International associations in the past who have helped, but unfortunately many of them no longer come to the region because it is a dangerous area. Until that perfect day comes where the solution has been found and put into practice, we must do our very best for the future of these beloved children.

There is very little policing in these areas and a lot of humans who are also raiders plague the region. Cattle raiding has become a very popular crime in this area and sadly many lives have been lost. At times when Run Away Brides International Ministries missionaries have traveled there, we have had to request soldiers to go with the missionaries to keep them safe.

What can we do at this time? All that we can do is come together and as a force against starvation, let us put our funds together and make sure food is making it into the Karamoja Region of Uganda.

God bless you and I thank you for the help and the connection that you and I have together in our heart of hearts to not allow another child to die from starvation or malnutrition.

Thank you,

Pastor Cindy Higgins

Pastor Denis Muwanguzi

RABS International Director

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I am a missionary pastor to pastors on the mission field in East Africa. I began ministerial studies in 2007 and completed them in 2011 and I was then ordained by two international ministries, Free International Ministries and MCWE Ministries. Run Away Brides International Ministries used to be under the umbrella of Barefoot Gardens Fellowship beginning in 2010. In 2018 RABS International Ministries became an independent registered ministry in 2018. My volunteer role is the International Director of RABS. RABS brings runaway brides of Christ back to Him through conferences held in many areas in Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania. RABS also does humanitarian work in these nations.