Who knew that by walking 467-kilometers, lives of vulnerable street children would be forever changed? Well, we got wind of an initiative by Dwelling Places, an organization that rescues, rehabilitates, reconciles and resettles street-connected children in Uganda. The said walk from Kampala to Karamoja is a bid to raise funds to support their programs.
Codenamed, ‘Journey of Hope’, the walk which will start on Monday July 31 is expected to last 18 days.
According to Rita Nkemba, the organisation’s Founding Director, the walk aims to raise awareness on child trafficking and mobilise funds to resettle 20 street kids with their families.
She said the organization will also use some of the funds to construct a classroom block in Lomaratoit Primary School in Napak.
Napak District is said to be the lead contributor to the skyrocketing numbers of street kids in Kampala.
Why Journey of Hope.
During her visit to Napak District in 2014, Nkemba visited Lomaratoit village where government had just constructed a new school.
She was shocked by the meagre numbers of children who were attending despite the school being for free.
“Only 30 pupils out of the registered 93 were on site when we visited in the middle of the term while many others were loitering in the village. We came to learn that while the school was for free, parents were required to pay Ush 2,000 every term,” Nkemba said.
“It is this need that led to the very first ‘Journey of Hope’ in 2015 which raised money to enroll up to 200 children in school in Lomaratoit village,” she added.
Since its inception, 15 years ago, Dwelling Places has rescued and reintegrated over 1,455 street children.
It is currently caring for 535 children and 96 families.
“We’ve supported these children by putting them back to school and 84.5%% of these have stayed in school. It is therefore tested that if children in Karamoja are supported to get education, they will stay off the streets,” she added, asking the public to donate towards the cause.
How to be a part of the campaign
You can be a part of the campaign physically by participating in the 18-day journey that will end in Karamoja.
Intending participants can get involved full time up to Karamoja or partially by walking a few days or hours.
Alternatively, one can support the campaign financially by donating money to support the scheduled activities.
You can make your donations via Mobile Money: 0781-161072; 0757-012762 and through Dwelling Places Account.
Account: Dwelling Places; 0102012442002; Standard Chartered Bank; Speke Road.
Remember to call or email Dwelling Places when you donate (Call/ email +256 (0) 757 012762; email: firstname.lastname@example.org).