Spend One or Two Life Changing Weeks in the Heart of Africa building new relationships, life empowering buildings such as classrooms, medical facilities, wells, latrines, or teaching in a classroom, tutoring and much more.
There are about 800,000 visitors a year that come to Uganda. 5000,000 of them are not the usual kind of tourist but are coming here for short-term work trips. They come from all over the world on short term mission trips, they are medical volunteers, church outreach trips, people from civic organizations, but they all come with a heart to give, to do something that matters to impact their world, to touch Africa, to make a difference in lives of those who need in Uganda.
The most unique thing about a volunteer work trip is that those who come benefit more than those whom they come to assist, empower, or create a project for. Life-changing are the word one hears when speaking to different individuals from work trip teams that come to Uganda.
Who Qualifies as a Volunteer Team?
The answer is simple. One person alone with a heart that is open makes a team. We get many individuals from all over the world including from Africa that come to Uganda and give of themselves to those who lack so much. On the other hand we get teams from churches who are interested in short term mission projects from a vacation Bible School to a group of friends who come teach children and adults how to read. There are also University Teams, Civic Groups who send a team, a group of friends who form a medical team, the possibilities are endless.
It simply takes a heart, a will to do something, and some financial investment. No special skills are required in most cases, except the desire to impact someone's life and leaving them richer within because of your investment of yourself and your time, the rewards are immeasurable and you will find yourself changed.
What kind of Opportunities are Presently Available?
There are many schools in Uganda, the problem is student to teacher ratio which can be one teacher to 100 pupils. Meaning that there are lots of opportunities for you and come and assist in teaching in various schools. We have an organization that we cooperate with that runs catch-up schools for children, empowering children who have not attended school, or have dropped out with a basic education. Much of the curriculum is taught in English, so the opportunity is there for you and the rewards are there awaiting your visit to Uganda. Classroom situations in Uganda are quite different and the teacher receives a lot of respect from the students and the students will be quite attentive. A most rewarding experience all around.
Since children are often in large classrooms they do not receive the personal input of a teacher, you can assist a child by your personal input in areas such as math, English, reading, writing and other basics and everyone would be most grateful, from guardians or parents to the children who receive your personal input.
• Libraries and Reading:
Ugandans normally do not read literature of any kind except textbooks in order to pass exams, reading for pleasure is not something that is done here. There are not many bookstores and or lending libraries available to the people of Uganda. If a school does have a library, books are protected by a teacher under lock and key. Children do not grow up with children books that expand the imagination and the inner horizon, though you read of efforts to change that, the reality is that most children do not read just for fun. Some people and or teams have brought suitcases of books for children and thereby enriching their lives. This can be done by most anyone who then can distribute the books but also teach how to enjoy them and even have readings of stories in a classroom as their volunteer work project.
• Sports of all kinds:
Ugandan Children love sports, but the opportunities are not often available in schools outside of football (soccer). Every boy will know the star players of British Premier Football but at the same time has never experience a simple game of fun such as volleyball, dodge ball. A sports clinic of some kind is most appreciated and the opportunities abound. It just takes some basic equipment such as net and balls and you are off. A soccer clinic of a week or two, organizing a sports day with training and some prizes will make some wonderful impact in the lives of children.
• Community Projects:
Such opportunities abound both in rural Uganda and in the slums of Kampala or Jinja affecting at times a whole community. Personal hygiene, HIV-AIDS prevention, Malaria Prevention projects, parenting skills, breastfeeding, first-aid training, family planning, nutrition and much more, growing a garden in a slum in a plastic containers with soil inside and slits allowing plants to grow, farming and livestock training in a hands on manner, business skills, ethical training, teaching English, literacy projects, resume writing, small business empowerment of women, the sky is the limit depending on you and your background, education and life-skills.
• Medical Volunteers of all kinds:
Doctors and nurses make little money here and the result is drain of them to other countries such as the UK, South Africa and other countries that accept their degrees from Uganda. The result is that there is a lack of trained medical personnel in this country and medical care costs money that Ugandans cannot afford to pay. From diabetes screening, blood pressure checks to some basic dental care are all needed. Medical teams have assisted thousands of Ugandans and often simple procedures have alleviated much suffering. If you can give just a few days of your year to Ugandans the results would be measurable and quite astounding. No matter what your medical skills might be, you can be of use here and your input would by most appreciated and a team of medical professionals or a solitary person's work in the medical field would be most appreciated and you would receive many a thank you.
• Slum Children Projects:
Assisting children and women in breaking the cycle of poverty and entering Ugandan life by giving them life-skills, business skills, child sponsorship, educational opportunities, building an inner esteem that will allow them to face the otherwise insurmountable obstacles in their way to break out of a slum into main-stream Uganda.
• Vocational Training:
From cooking and food preparation, hospitality training, auto mechanics, carpentry, plumbing, electrical, small appliance repair, customer service, computer skills, specific computer program training, computer repair, cell phone repair, solar power and one could go on and on. Just write to me and ask.
• Vacation Bible Schools:
A combination of the spiritual with fund for children. Puppets are most appreciated and children will learn. Faith is a part of Ugandan life, but understanding their faith from a biblical perspective is often based on sermons and teachings of another. Teaching children how to enjoy the Bible and reading it has long term consequences for the good of the children and are simply to organize.
• Fire Prevention Training:
Each year many school building dormitories burn up, in some cases children are killed as in recent fire where over 20 were killed, such fires can be prevented and the deaths also through proper training, fire drills, knowledge in the extinguishment of different fires and evacuation plans.
• Construction Work and Building:
New building construction, repair work, roofing, which is tile or corrugated iron sheets, plumbing repair, building of pit latrines, classrooms, dormitories, kitchen facilities and more are all there awaiting you.