Currently, Uganda has 2.5 million orphans. Conservative estimates predict this number will grow. The average Ugandan family has 7 children. When parents die, their children are too great a burden for extended families to manage. Relatives already struggle to provide for their own. As a result, children are farmed out to different family members in diverse locations. Therefore, an orphaned child loses not only his parents, but often his siblings as well. Some are treated poorly by resentful relatives. Others try to survive on the streets. In all respects, they are outcasts.
In the north, many children lost their families due to a 20 year war. They lived in internally displaaced persons camps, basically slum cities, initially created by the Ugandan government to protect citizens from the Lord’s Resistance Army , a rebel group led by Joseph Kony. During the war, the LRA pulled young boys from their beds and forced them to be soldiers with a kill-or-be killed mandate. Countless girls were also kidnapped and used as sex slaves. Many have young babies though they themselves were still children. Some kids saw their own parents killed by the rebel army. The war ended, but kids left behind were traumatized beyond belief. Knowing only instability and terror, they were in the depths of despondency.
Uganda Orphans Fund cares for vulnerable children by providing education, stability, and healthcare in order to develop productive, responsible adults who can positively impact their country.
Founded in 2002 by Duncan Hill, originally Uganda Orphans Fund partnered with other relief organizations to build over 30 orphan homes, rescuing over a thousand kids. A typical orphan home costs $35,000 and houses 50-60 children. This includes beds, a latrine and a kitchen. We left the ongoing care of the orphans to local church leaders, and other ministries in the area.
In 2006, Uganda Orphans Fund obtained “non-government organization” status with the Republic of Uganda. This designation allowed us to steward our own vision. Kasozi Village in Kamuli District is a prototype of the projects we hope to multiply. The village has four orphan homes, a primary school, staff housing, a church, a soccer field and a large garden. Nearly 120 orphans live there along with 30 staff members. This diverse community represents three different tribes and has become one loving and cohesive family, with a future and a hope.
We additionally sponsor more than 60 older children, mostly orphans formerly at Kasozi Village, through secondary school.