The First Uganda’s children foundation in ‘Birra’ in the offing.
By Abubakar Sematimba
A Ugandan US based David Ssejinja is the founder of The Ssejinja Children's Foundation in Uganda, narrates to our reporter Abubakar Sematimba who gave him a courtesy visit at his home village, BirraWakiso district Uganda, revealing why he started this project.
Mr. David started this project basically to give back to his country of origin Uganda, where he was born, and also to give the children an opportunity to explore what they missed while growing up.
The foundation is a home to 950 plus orphans and widows, many of them disadvantaged by HIV/AIDS scourge and past civil wars. The areas of service are Gulu in northern part of the country, Kampala, Masaka and Mukono.
David's mission has extended beyond a personal love for the children, and embarked on a noble duty of awareness and educating the young ones about the dangers of HIV/AIDS and how to prevent it, such that they remain healthy and more useful to the society.
The foundation is on a campaign of spreading this message throughout the country.
Beside giving shelter and feeding these orphans, they also provide for quality education, and they have as well established a fully equipped children clinic.
The peasants can now access free medical treatment, first Aid, and where possible a referral to big hospitals.
The economic recession that hit many of the developed worlds did not spare African nations Uganda in particular.
The prices of essential commodities like food and fuel increased, yet the incomes of many Ugandans remained the same.
Majority of Ugandans are peasants living in the villages, and do practice subsistence farming.
The Ssejinja foundation is entirely based on donations from well wishers, for that matter the management encourages the community to give out whatever it can, and the response has been good.
Widows who run small businesses around the village where the foundation is also do contribute.
The Ssejinja Children's Foundation is a non-racial, religious organization, believing in religious values of honest, integrity and service to humanity, supported by a diverse team of dedicated, warm-hearted volunteers and friends.
The organization reaches out in compassion, to helping those who are in crisis and need, within their communities and localities, it also do counseling and fundamental education.
According to David Ssejinja, Lack of quality education remains a major problem in Africa and Uganda can not be spared.
The children, who have been orphaned by HIV/AIDS and civil wars, are in need of basic services and materials to learn.
David recalls how he came to the USA 10 years ago, attained quality education and looked back to helping those he left in absolute and massive poverty.
'I left behind a war-torn and desecrated society, burdened by poverty and deeply uprooted by HIV/AIDS
The memories of children who were so dear to me kept coming back, it is very hard to be an orphan, you have no guardian, you are starving and you have no hope for the future' ssejinja recalls'.
He disclosed how he donates half of his salary, to his home village, especially the children, such that they can acquire quality educationfor the better future.
According to Ssejinja, the community now has access to pure drinking water, made possible by a team of engineers from Utah State University, and the Engineers without Borders program in collaboration with hisSsejinja Foundation.
The foundation also sends volunteers to Africa every year, with intension of increasing awareness, and raising funds for the orphaned children, who have never even stepped at any school in their entire life.
According to David, these children do not only lack funds for school, but there is also a shortage of buildings and facilities where to study from.
'We therefore ask our sponsors, and those who are reading this article, to donate tirelessly to us. All the funds collected in this campaign goes directly to medical, buying scholastic materials and construction of schools for the communities in the villages. Our focus now is on building a kindergarten'.
The foundation is also looking at empowering elderly and middle aged people with skills, such that they can start small scale businesses in their localities, this will encourage and induce parents to seek for quality education for their children, especially the orphans in both primary and secondary level and beyond.
I envision a village that's is self-sustained in development, a village that educates its younger ones, a village that collectively and independently develops its self, once it is given opportunities to thrive and reach its own potential.
I envision villages were its children are the pillars of hope to make the world a better place through education and training.
I envision a village where there is access to clean water, nutritious food, safe shelter, education, and medical care for all widows, especially those who are alone and without advocacy.
1. To promote primary education especially to orphans and vulnerable children.
2. Supporting the government policy on universal primary education.
3. Boosting orphanage care programmes in communities.
4. Reducing on the school drop out rate which has led to increased levels of unemployment and high crime rate.
Other objectives for 2014-2015
1-installing water piping and Reclamation system in the Community of Ggenda village, we are also looking for Water Treatment and Purification mechanism for the school.
2- Building a primary school with fabricated materials, solar Energy installations, and Setting up a computer lab with 24 hours internet connectivity. Distance Learning services and teacher training center will also be provided.
3-Purchasing medical equipments and HIV Aids testing kits.
4-Purchasing a medical van/Ambulance,
5- Building a village clinic and, to provide free transportation to referral hospitals for HIV/ Aids dying patients.
The Ssejinja Children Foundation therefore urges a call to action to extend a hand of friendship and partnership, to these needy children of Africa, to find at least good life with basic needs.
Your donations will help the smooth running of our programs which will result in improved live hood of our African Children, Uganda in particular.
Contributions from well wishers, organizations, corporate and individuals are highly awaited as the work is already in progress.
For those who wish to donate in monetary form, you are also welcome. Remember all donations are tax-deductible.
Please remember to visit our website on: www.ssejinja.org