I would like to send you a big thank you from the bottom my heart for your vital support, encouragement and prayers for the on-going life changing works of re-building the lives of children and communities in Northern Uganda badly damaged by over 20 years of war between the LRA rebels and Ugandan government soldiers.
Various international organisations including the United Nations documented over 25,000 children abducted and up to half a million people in Northern Uganda perished during the insurgency period between January 1986 and February 2006. The aftermath of the war left tens of thousand of orphans, created the highest rate of HIV/Aids infection in Uganda, brought acute poverty and Northern Uganda remains the most neglected part of the country up to now.
Your tremendous support in various ways made sure the work which begun by caring for 30 orphan children in 2007 has now expanded to take care of over 200 HIV positive children and other orphan vulnerable children mainly in the five Sub-Counties of Patongo, Lira Palwo, Omot, Adilang and Lukole in Agago District, Northern Uganda. At the beginning of our programme, most children affected by the disease were avoided and not allowed to mix freely with other children. However, through the determined efforts of the board, staff and courage shown by the children, we managed to overcome stigmatisation and ignorance of the disease through education, community sensitisation, psychosocial support and counselling. The result is that there are now over 400 children (healthy and affected together) attending nursery and primary education at our main centre in Patongo Sub-County. The centre the centre has become popular and leading in various disciplines in the district such as academic, sports, music and drama and it has become an institution where notable community members now send their children for education.
The holistic approach being carried out by the centre is also giving support to the affected families through the women group, sending effective and practical message to the younger generation and the community through sports (the centre is pioneering Agago Marathon and football competition every year) and playing vital part in restoring community’s dignity and hope for a better future.
One of the biggest challenges now is the urgent need for more funding (donors) to support the expanding work. For the last seven years, the Humanitarian Aid Relief Trust (HART) being directed by the Baroness Cox has contributed significantly to the foundation and success of the programme but other donors are now urgently needed to join hands and help maintain the tremendous works achieved so far. Through the vital advice and help from my friend Joshua Bwami, we have now completed the work on the website which we believe will help attract more supporters and donors. Please visit our website on www.paorin.org and register your participation, advice, prayers and connect to friends and organisation who you think can be of help.
Paorinher Children Centre
Patongo, Agago District