Our Father’s House Ministries has worked hard to create a positive environment where children are safe and respected. Special attention has been given to child rights, positive discipline, safeguarding children against abuse and holistic care and development.
We recognise that beyond us there are still many issues that affect children in their homes, schools and communities and here are some of the complex causes that affect them:
- Food security
- Social exclusion
- Age of caregivers
- Access to health care
- Gender discrimination
- Violence against children
- Economic security/unemployment
- Ongoing Illness of breadwinners (HIV / AIDs)
Every family you meet has already developed their own ways of dealing with these issues using their own understanding. As each household is unique, they deal with these issues differently, so there is always a need to pray that God guides and gives a proper direction on how to apply the skills needed to understand the individual circumstances of each household and to support them in ways that are appropriate and welcome.
Employment is scarce.
Vulnerable Women and Children
Women and children struggle mostly with how to survive, they are the most vulnerable people.
It is the most heart-breaking thing to go to a home and find that a 10 year old child is the head of the family but this is common.
Add to that the fact that children whose parents died, are in most cases abused, thought of as thieves, dirty and not trusted, so they go hungry.
When we get the opportunity to sponsor any of them, we do our best to make sure they feel the love, respect, understanding and appreciation from us and their sponsors as parents or friends sent by God.
The current population of Uganda comprises 77% of people below the age of 35 years.
Government of Uganda is strongly challenged with the delivery of services to this population most of which is not productive because they are either too young, still in school or just graduated and unemployed. In fact, the unemployment in Uganda for young people (aged 15-24 years) stands at 83%.
The unemployment rate is even higher among the youth who have formal degrees and live in urban areas. This is due to the disconnect between the degrees achieved and the vocational skills needed for the jobs that are in demand for workers. This is partly the reason Uganda is ranked the most entrepreneurial country in the world because the youthful graduates have nowhere to find gainful employment and have to scratch to start their own income generating enterprises which, because of the poor business history of the country, rarely succeed in reaching the end of a first year in operation.
Percentage of Ugandans aged 35 years old or less.
Unemployment in Uganda for young people aged 15-24 years.
Percentage of children we support who were picked from a garbage dump / abandoned.
Spiralling Family Poverty
Society in Uganda is in such a way that the progress of a single family will be highly dependent on success of the formally employed members of the family.
Therefore without employment of the graduates, families turn into a negative spiral of vulnerability and inability to break out of poverty after the family resources are spent to finance education of the family members who never get employed and never successfully establish their own income generating activities.
With this high dependency rate, the very young ones in families, particularly children in pre-school age and early primary school level, are more vulnerable to dropping out of school and straying out of their homes, ending up in day children hospitality centres for help or becoming street children.
As child hospitality centres are rare in Uganda, most children end up as street children or homeless, roaming around villages.
Basic Services are Minimal
The availability of basic amenities for a decent living standard including shelter, food, health care and communication is limited.
Elites commonly exit the village lifestyle and move to trading centres leaving little possibility of modern knowledge infusion into the rural communities for the rural socio-economic progress.
Water supply is erratic due to rough mountainous terrain, while people live uphill due to extreme population pressure on land. The volcanic soils don’t retain water and thus there are no mountain water springs. For example in Kisoro District where we are building a school, water is fetched from streams at the foot of mount Muhabura. With help from well wishers, Our Father’s House Ministries has helped provide rain roof water harvesting tanks to some families and water filters to all families.
Communities do not have enough of even the essential drugs from the government health centres in the region due to limited deliveries. People have resorted to self-medication because they cannot afford private services.
Abandoned and Homeless Children
Due to extremely low family incomes and limited understanding on the means to raise family income, families with low incomes in the region cannot keep up with the cash needs of their families and remain critically unable to afford basics in life and in particular maintaining their children in school.
This has resulted in high cases of school dropouts, wandering village children, street kids and homeless children roaming into villages or seeking shelter at churches and good willed people’s homes.
Limited parenting skills among rural village parents stifles achievement of holistic early childhood development. We see a high number of child / teen mothers, failed child / teen mother families and child / teen mother send-a ways from homes, risky abortions, dumped babies which further escalates the gravity of the problem of poor early child care and development.
120 of the children being supported by Our Father’s House Ministries were either picked from a garbage dump or brought in by their grandmothers as they had been abandoned by their child / teen mothers. Children picked from garbage dumps are given a host sponsor mother (usually a woman who has not had children of her own) for a small upkeep fee.
HIV AIDS has affected children in Uganda – it has left many children living alone. Not only are these children growing up alone, they are growing up with a stigma associated with having parents die from AIDS.
This stigma sadly keeps them alone and isolated from extended family and their communities. They usually drop out of school as there is no one to provide care, meals, school fees and the necessary school supplies.
“The stress of living as a child with parents who have AIDS in Uganda is challenging.”Martin Duhimbaze – Founder & Director
These children also have to cope with the added traumatic event of watching parents die of this disease. We are privileged to be involved in this humble task and we know it is a task we could never accomplish without the helping hands of friends like you.
We pray that you will be encouraged to join us to give these children the future they deserve.
Sponsor a Child
Every child is precious to God.
His desire is for each child to grow up in a safe, caring environment, blessed with an education where they can learn that they matter, they belong, and they have potential. Our Father’s House Ministries provides a sponsorship scheme to help others step in and care for vulnerable children, to be a family for them and to help them escape the suffering of poverty.
We are extremely grateful for all physical aid offered to us. If you would like to donate in this way please contact us using the below details.
PO Box 392, Rukungiri, Uganda.
Quick £10 Donation
A £10 donation will go a long way to support these children with their physical and spiritual needs. We thank you very much for your support.
God Bless You and thank you for your support.