Branches of life

Branches of life is a children’s orphanage located in Namungoona, Kampala district. Founded in 2007 by Charles Kalunda, Branches of life reaches out to children giving them shelter, feeding, education and teaching them development skills. The orphanage now houses around 50 children, some of whom are living with host families because of the limited capacity of the orphanage.

Branches of life is working on fundraising at this moment, planning to buy land to grow food/build a bigger orphanage. This will increase the self-sufficiency of the organization that is today almost entirely depending on donations and grants. Other ways of increasing the self-sufficiency of the organization are also being explored, e.g. in the form of craft business, to make paper necklaces and sell them here and abroad.

The major objectives of Branches of life are the following:

• To support and encourage orphans and school drop outs to achieve the best level of education, practical life skills and knowledge.

• To initiate and establish community based development projects that will foster and promote development and the welfare of the people.

• To promote environmental conservation.

• Community sensitization among youth about self reliance and HIV Aids awareness

• Christian counseling and guidance, which includes sharing the word of God and giving out Bibles

Branches of life has hosted many UPA volunteers in the past. They have stated that working at the orphanage can be very challenging and heavy when alone, but it is not uncommon that more than one volunteer will be working at the orphanage. In case of working alone, the volunteer’s responsibility for taking care of so many children might feel as a heavy burden. Volunteers have had good experiences in working at Branches of life, and some of them return to Uganda to check on the project.

Although most volunteers work on weekdays, the orphanage can also use some extra hands on the weekends.

For more information on the project you can contact UPA (ugandapioneers22@hotmail.com) or branchesoflife2007@yahoo.com

You can also take a look at their website http://www.branchesoflifeintl.net

BRANCHES OF LIFE INTERNATIONAL ORPHANAGE PROJECT

PROJECT CODE:   UPA/MLTV 017

Background Branches of life was founded in 2007 by Charles Kalunda, a former street kid himself

Branches of life international is home for 50 orphans, aged 4-14 years.

They are former street kids, abandoned, orphans and vulnerable children.

Most of these children had dropped out from school, but now are given the opportunity to rejoin school.

Aim The aim is to provide basic care to the children’s need, to encourage and support them in basic Education and learning skills. Through counseling we make them accept to go to school, give them new hope and confidence to life.
Activities
  • Teaching basic English and Mathematics
  • Giving care and showing love to the children
  • Playing with the children.
  • Helping in their home work
  • House work, preparing food, fetching water, doing dishes etc
  • Counseling and guidance
Volunteer qualities
  • Ready to work with former street children
  • Should be innovative with arranging lessons and games for the children.
  • Should not smoke from the orphanage
  • Be ready for a very fragile community (changing characters)
Rating Low Medium High
Educational x
Practical x
Room for new initiative x
Emotional challenging x
Work load x
Rating by MTVs
Working hours 

 

The orphanage is flexible and therefore allowing the volunteers to be there at the different times (09:00-16:00 hrs).
Transport The home is in Kampala. It takes about 40minutes to get there by public transport and will cost about 1000 Uganda shillings to and from.
Accommodation A volunteer can stay at the UPA guesthouse in Nansana or the orphage may organize accommodation on request.
Comments from UPA It is an interesting project, one where you can see innovations for pupils through trying several vocational activities. It is worth giving a hand although it sometimes maybe challenging to be there as a volunteer at a time when the project funding is down. It may not be easy for you to look at hungry kids…
Communication The children have been living in the streets and therefore most of them don’t speak English, but they are improving.
Past Volunteers Finland, Netherlands, Germany, Israel, and Japan.
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