Wednesday, 14 October 2009


In October 2008 Trevor, a trustee, and Keith who sponsors 2 children, travelled to Lira with me for 3 weeks.

I was able to stay in our office accompanied by some our lovely children. It was an emotional experience to see the developments since I worked in a field giving the children just a bowl of porridge each day and had to send them back to sleep on the street.

In just 6 months the office and routine was established, the team were working well together, our 4 goats were growing under the care of our ‘trainee goatherds’, the new motor bike was being used to such good effect, beans were growing on my land and 20+ children were attending school/training daily. The sight of these ‘previous street children’ standing proud in school uniform, with some flesh on their bones telling stories of their family and learning, was rewarding and I knew that we were heading in the right direction.

We visited all the schools attended by our children and the reports were good, some exceptional. Kenneth who lost both parents and lived on the street for several years, had always seemed worried.

He told me it was because he felt he would never have the opportunity to return to school. After just 6 weeks in boarding school, thanks to his sponsor, he took exams and came 7th in a class of 200+.

On the other end of the scale, Winnie, 8, who lived a very dysfunctional life with old grandparents, struggled to settle in a structured school environment and was asked to leave because of her behaviour. She was upset but with counselling she has realised that school is so important. She is now coming to the office, staying with the housekeeper during the day, getting love and being valued. Staff are working to rebuild her relationship with her mother and to get her back to live there and to attend the local school in the Summer term.

Trevor and Keith were welcomed and loved by the children. Their DIY skills were soon in demand as they built a huge storage unit and Keith balanced on the roof to set up a pulley washing line.

Trevor soon became the doctor of the house and took children to the clinics for malaria tests and treatment. They visited the homes of children and witnessed the way they lived. Trevor and I visited one of our boys in prison because he had been part of the gang when a lady was robbed and stabbed in the street. The conditions were upsetting and I was also upset as I had to leave him there. He was only 16 and should not have been in an adult prison, his papers had been changed by the authorities. Don’t ask...... this is Africa!! With the support of his sponsor and hard work of the staff he has now been released and is showing us his gratitude by living with us and working to support the other children and the organisation.