News from Lesotho and the Yes we care! e.V. Child Sponsorship Program, September 2020


As everywhere in the world, the numbers of coronavirus infections is increasing in Lesotho. These numbers only give an idea of ​​the rising trend, as there are major health problems in Lesotho, which are now particularly evident in Corona times. Only a few selected people are tested for a corona infection. After the first corona case was confirmed only in May 2020, 1085 cases are now known. Out of 528 have recovered and 31 have died. The number of unreported cases is certainly much higher! At the moment there are only 2 intensive care beds for the admission and treatment of patients with a severe course of the disease! Health workers have waited for months for protective clothing and eventually went on strike to put pressure on the government and prevent transmission between patients receiving treatment. The funds urgently needed and approved for this purpose are misappropriated. The people of Lesotho are largely left to their own devices in this crisis.


There are the economic consequences of the lockdown and the ongoing closure of the border with neighbouring South Africa. The already immensely high unemployment rate continues to rise and a rapidly growing part of Lesotho's population is starving. Many people still keep themselves afloat with the food harvested in their own gardens in autumn 2020 (spring 2020 in Germany). But slowly it is no longer enough, more and more people find themselves in a serious crisis with the risk of starvation.



This hardship particularly affects our sponsored children, who all come from difficult social circumstances. As all schools in Lesotho remain closed, there is no way to feed the students at school.



Our carers, Makabelo and Mpho, with the support of the carer of the boys' boarding facilities, Thabiso Paku, are currently driving for the second time through the Maluti Mountains to the small mountain villages, transporting essential food to each and every sponsored child.



Each sponsored student receives a large bag of millie meal (corn) as well as eggs, oil, salt, dried beans, peas and soup and matches to light a fire.



Where possible, the food is distributed to small groups of sponsored children, who each come with a wheelbarrow in which the goods are then transported away.



But many of the students live so far apart that the distribution extends over many days and into the nights.



Thanks to this hunger relief not only our sponsored children survive, often also their numerous relatives.



During the summer months in Germany, it is winter in Lesotho. This winter 2020 was very cold and hard. The Basotho heat with and cook on wood fires. A few days ago one of our sponsored children had to have an eye operation because a large wood splinter got into his eye while he was chopping wood.


On 1st September 20 we were informed that the schools may be reopened from 6th October 2020. This also applies to Pitseng High School, but only for the tenth and twelfth grades. The students will be taught continuously until March 2021 - without the usual summer holidays which fall during the German Christmas holidays - and then write their important exams, the Junior Certificate Exam and Matric. There is still hope for our sponsored students in these grades of being able to successfully complete this school year at least by March 2021.


For all eighth, ninth and eleventh grade students, classes are not expected to start again until March 2021. Until then, they will be supported by us through food aid. For them this school year 2020 will be a lost school year. In 2020, lessons have only taken place for 6 weeks, and that after classes had been cancelled for months in 2019 due to the national teachers' strike. And digital learning is unfortunately not an option in Lesotho.


Yes we care! e.V. has financially supported Pitseng High School and Pontmain Primary School in getting ready for the opening of the schools. Thousands of face masks have been purchased and hundreds of them have already been distributed to all sponsored children – during the food distribution.



Disinfectants for hands and surfaces as well as dispensers for both schools and the associated boarding facilities were financed and purchased.



Each students will receive their own disinfectant bottle when school starts up again.



The project to improve the study situation in the girls' boarding facility is now making great strides. A large room that was in disrepair could be renovated and was divided into three smaller rooms.



The school furniture is being made and almost ready.



There are still finances left for further improvements, e.g. the acquisition of PCs. Sister Germina, who belongs to the order of the Sisters of Charity of Ottawa, proceeds with the project with great enthusiasm. Unfortunately, more and more of her fellow sisters, with whom she lives in the convent in Pitseng, are dying. Seven - mostly older - sisters have already died in the last three weeks (it has been shown that Corona played a role in this). This is a bitter blow to them and we think of and pray for the Sisters.


We now have to wait and see how the situation in Lesotho will develop. At the moment, all of our sponsored children are doing well and they can't wait to get back to school! For 64 sponsored children who are in the ninth and eleventh grades, there will be no other option: they will need an extra school year. For 53 sponsored children who are in the tenth and twelfth grades, there is still the possibility of successfully completing this school year.


We would like to thank everyone, sponsors and donors, who stand by us in this extremely difficult time - especially in a country like Lesotho - and help us to keep children in need alive and to help them get back to school as quickly as possible!

Kea leboha!



Mr. Thabiso Paku (right) helps distribute the food aid. Tlotliso Maboee (left) is a former sponsored student who is now studying. Thanks to the Yes we care! e.V. Sponsorship Program, his twin sister (not in the picture) has also written her matric and is now studying. His younger sister (middle) is currently in the program. The whole family is very grateful for the help from Germany