Ukids was established in 2008 to meet the needs of two rapidly growing orphanages in Seeta (Eastern Uganda) and Lira (Northern Uganda). Over the years, Ukids has continued to organize funding, donated goods, and projects to help the children in these orphanages.
Through the projects we have undertaken, we have given the children an infrastructure and environment so they can thrive; including a home, a school, a church, a playground, electricity, and water. Ukids has not only built projects, we have built lasting relationships, encouraged them in their faith and given them hope for the future.
All of our projects have been made possible by professionals who donate their time and resources. They give abundantly with love, and we are so grateful for them. Many whom have joined us in Uganda. From electricians, builders, plumbers, musicians, and doctors etc. But a special thank you to our many photographers who make it possible for you to see the smiles on the faces of those we serve. Several of our team members captured the sweet moments you see on this website and Sweet Be Photography and Searatz Media captured our aerial photos of the orphanage and race photos. Without them, we would not be able to show you what we do.
A VIDEO STORY
2006-2007: The Beginning
In 2006, Pastor Jackson Senyonga came to visit Abundant Life Church in Happy Valley, Oregon, where he told his life story of abandonment and poverty. A story of heartache and heroism, he overcame the odds with God's help. Today, Pastor Jackson and his wife, Eve, raise and educate hundreds of children to be the future leaders of Uganda.
After hearing his story, Dr. Bruce Douglas and his wife, Debbie felt called to visit Uganda. They left Oregon with a medical team equipped to care for the children at the Senyonga Orphan Villages. One in Seeta, Eastern Uganda and the other in Lira, Northern Uganda.
In 2007, the first team went to build a main hall in the Seeta orphanages. This would act as a central gathering spot for 160 children.
2008: Ukids Is Established, Water Filtration System Installed & Infrastructure Projects Begin In Seeta, Uganda
Ukids was officially established in 2008, and joined with Christian Life Ministries (CLM) to love and raise what is now over 300 children. Ukids visited Uganda with its second team of volunteers. This time to begin setting the infrastructure that will be able to provide better living conditions for the orphans and vulnerable children as they continue to grow. Their focus was:
Obtaining a water filtration system to provide clean drinking water to the orphan village
Adding a ventilated kitchen, gutters and downspouts to the main community hall
Adding the first cistern to store filtered water
In 2009, the orphanages grew to more than double in size from the previous year; from 300 to 800 children. Ukids began to see the challenges of providing for so many children. The needs were immense. In preparation for the annual trip, the team collected goods and sent the first shipping container to the Seeta Orphanage. Supplies and projects included:
Digging a well
Adding additional cisterns for water storage
Installing electricity in the main community hall and homes
VBS for the children
2010-2011: Groundbreaking For New School in Seeta, Uganda,
The original school house, with its modest accommodations and dirt floors, was full to capacity. With nearly 1,000 children in 2010, the need for a new school was now undeniable. Ukids shipped its second container full of clothing and supplies. With multiple partnerships, sponsorships and fundraising events, Ukids went to Uganda equipped to begin the first stages of Life Academy.
In 2011, the third container was shipped to Uganda. This time it was filled with school supplies and clothing. The first level of the school was finished and class began for primary levels. This would also be the first year the orphanages would have children old enough to send to secondary school. Sponsorship needs increased with the additional cost of sending these children to private secondary schools, where they live while they attend school at some of the best schools Uganda has to offer.
2012-2014: With Infrastructure Projects Nearly Complete, Ukids Focuses On The Heart Of The Children
Evangelism Explosion and Memory Books for Children International joined Ukids. Evangelism Explosion is a fun way to tell the children about God's Love, His Grace, His Protection, and His Salvation. Memory Books for Children International takes it even further and really helps the children begin to piece their life together in a story as it encourages healing and recovery from past heartache. Many of these children do not even know their birthday or how old they are. Without an adult to pass down their heritage, many of them are left without the core knowledge of who they are or where they come from.
In 2012 and 2013, construction continued on the four story school building and Ukids sent its fourth container. The roof was finally put on the school building in 2014. That same year, a team also traveled to Lira to build a security wall around the orphanage and paint a mural. In the Seeta orphanage, Ukids hosted a race for the children.
2015: Ukids Leadership Team Hosts A Conference At Secondary Schools
With so many of the children going off to Secondary Schools, they are faced with the struggles and challenges of young adults. Ukids felt called to host conferences at the schools to allow them the opportunity to open up and hopefully provide them with knowledge and resources necessary for them to make good choices. We were excited by their response and willingness to speak candidly with us.
"For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me ..."