Establishing Compassion. Transforming lives.
About Kitenge Africa Foundation
Kitenge Africa Foundation (KAF) is a registered grass root, Non-Governmental Organization; Reg. (Cert. No.CEN/430) based in Kampala, Uganda, East Africa. Kitenge Africa Foundation aims to assisting the disadvantaged, primarily vulnerable children and women by improving their livelihoods and empowering them with life skills mostly through education and sensitization programs.
Why Kitenge for a Name?
Kitenge is a Swahili word for the bright and colorful African textile mostly preferred by African woman and mothers. Their biggest preference in line with child care is to use it as a bed sheet, towel and most of all, wrapping their babies so as to carry them on their backs. In this case, Kitenge cloth herein natures children hence represents parental security, comfort and warmth yet is still bold and innovative which is why it was chosen as the name.
1.1 Organizational Background
As a 19 year old, Mr. Koojo Justus Kojax founded the charity in 2008 with the initial objective to improve street children’s health, sanitation and personal hygiene through regular donation of clothing and sanitation material. The charity began by moving door-to-door collecting donated clothes which were eventually brought together and given out to the homeless on the streets and to organized groups in desperate need, like orphanages. Besides, voluntarily the team treated skin infectious diseases and provided training in preventive measures and at some point the charity referred to as ‘The clothing-NGO’ and since their efforts were to protect little ones affording them something warm to protect from harsh weather and helping them have a better life.
It is from there, that the name Kitenge Africa Foundation was derived.” By the end of the year 2009, there was a team of ten volunteers working with the organization and seeing positive results. The health and hygiene of all the 52 street children the team worked with had greatly improved they all understood and practiced basic personal hygiene, endeavored to keep their hair and nails shorter, were more positive about the bathing and washing opportunities we gave them. In the long run however these improvements were not enough to transform the lives of street children who were still malnourished, uneducated, homeless and vulnerable to abuse. And as a team, as much as they were willing to go the extra mile and reach out to all the street children, due to limited resources, the team only looked on helpless at the plight the children suffered overall. It was however time for the next step. And as advised by the Community Development Officer, Kampala City Council Authority, Ms. Akello Molly, and the KAF Board of Directors, the team resolved to expand objectives as an organization from just providing clothing, health and sanitation services to feeding, providing shelter and educational opportunities and championing the rights of the “Voiceless” children. Based on these new goals, new programs were designed and implementation began in the communities
- Child Protection & Well-being
- Love, Care &Compassion
- Family Re-integration
- Accountability and Transparency
- Team Work
- Networking & Partnerships
1. Current Programs and Projects
1.1 Street Child Outreach Program
Currently, this program benefits hundreds of homeless children who are met weekly to share love, knowledge and time. Particular groups of homeless children are met on particular days in different locations. They are given the opportunity to wash and bathe, have their hair cut, eat a nourishing meal, receive one on one counseling, basic medical care and donations to meet their basic needs i.e. clothes and shoes. Better minor medical access has also left the children relieved of minor health problems. However, the organization is not prepared to deal with major health problems and many of these are, unfortunately, not seen. The programs are conducted in safe and conducive environments hence allowing room for learning, counseling, opening up and bonding with each other’s. A variety of activities are conducted with these children including art, crafts, relational talks, guidance, counseling, music, dance and drama, concluding with religious education, although the charity is fully committed to assisting those in need regardless of belief.
This program is about building relationships, and targeted to get the children fully open up and discuss what exactly goes on in their lives and why they are on the streets. This is a very good platform to get to know them and address their needs accordingly. This program is therefore a backbone to all the others.
1.2 Educational & Learning Program
Homeless and vulnerable community children interested in learning and studying are given the opportunity to have basic lessons in English, mathematics, science, social studies, reading and writing. On the average, we have over 200 Orphans and Vulnerable Children benefiting from this program. Classes are taught from incomplete structures down the slums although they are fair enough to accommodate the kids and have them concentrate, learn and study. The curriculum taught has been tailored and subjects prioritized in relation to the lifestyles these vulnerable children live. For instance, topics like fast aid, personal hygiene and sanitation. In their daily lives, they are now able to apply all that is taught and it helps them trade life on a safer side since they are very exposed to risks and stakes. This is in preparation for starting, or a return to school in the future for those interested in further education and studies. Of the over 200 children in the education and learning programs, about 40% of them positively respond to simple reading and writing and for those children that have proved a keen interest to learning, they have been moved to our children’s base in Mpigi Busomba Village where they fully live and attend school.
1.3 Family Reunion Program
This program helps homeless children to be resettled and reunited with their families or relatives. Children often end up on the streets due to a lack of love, family crisis and breakdowns. Reuniting them with loving family members or caregivers is important. Not all the homeless are totally orphaned or can’t trace their homes – and number at least a single parent, guardian, sibling, or a concerned relative. They have become homeless due: poverty, mistreatment, high death rates, high birth rates, civil wars and due to a belief that they will have a better life and freedom on the streets. In discussions with them, volunteers hope to discover why they are homeless and demonstrate the importance of family in growing up. While deepening their appreciation of families – regardless of status – a visit to their homes and relatives is paid to hear firsthand why their children left home in the first place. If they are willing to be reunited as families, reconciliation is conducted. This is only the beginning, however and regular follow ups and frequent visits are still made to ensure that all is normal and that the broken family is once again complete and happy. Speaking from experience, this is the most strategic way to reduce the number of homeless children in Africa.
1.4 . KAF-Child Care Program
Kitenge Africa Foundation adopts orphans and vulnerable children off the streets, slums and vulnerable communities to eventually resettle them into the KAF-Children base in Busomba Village-Mpigi district. Here the children are given first priorities into feeding, shelter, education, medical access, and clothing among other basic needs. So far, this program benefits 30 children who are taken care of fulltime and 13 partially. The children are resettled in such a calm, green
and very specious environment that gives them time to be children yet reflect upon their lives leaving their minds nourished, freed of the past hard times and trauma lived. This hence gives them time to grow well and catch up with their future dreams. We have them enrolled at our community school (which serves about 300 poor household children) in Mpigi where all their basic necessities for survival are met. However, through it all, family re-integration is one of the biggest ambitions we front for it is very important the child grows up with in their own family. This has helped as long as the child has completed all their rehabilitation modules and the family has also been trained on how to handle the child.
1.5 Family Based Care Program
Under this program, the basic needs of children and the elderly from very poor and disadvantaged back grounds are identified and supported. For instance, with households whose children successfully reunited but yet families cannot sustain their basic needs; we then do the family based care program initiate to support the children ensuring that they do not return to the streets Regular monitoring and evaluation of the general welfare of these children is made by making the
families of the children directly accountable for their welfare through regular visits. Children and the elderly supported under this program are basically aided with food, clothing, education, basic medical assistances, other possible basic needs, and outstanding aid if the need arises.
1.6 Life Skills & Micro Finance Program
This program is designed to equip the youth and vulnerable women with life skills and economic empowerment. Skills in weaving, tailoring, bricklaying, agriculture, farming, barbering, hair dressing, metal welding, carpentry and entrepreneurial knowledge are taught. However, the organization is still very interested in receiving further training on more life skills to pass on the same way. This program mostly targets women living with HIV, single mothers, and the youth. KAF believes in teaching how to fish than rather giving fish. Later, where need is realized, small micro finance loans are given to empower these vulnerable groups of people. So far, this program benefits over 100 youth and vulnerable mothers. Future plan is to set up KAF-SACCOs to which these peasants can save and from which borrow finances.
1.7 Community Outreach & Sensitization Program
This is a community-relational program that helps get to know communities even more so as to better evaluate the impact made. Different groups of people are interacted with so KAF learns how to serve the people and react in accordance to their needs. Most people are vulnerable and require sensitive care and attention therefore KAF does community service in areas like; visiting the sick, bringing them food, visitation to community schools and faith-based organizations to
share knowledge, skills and experiences. Under this program, free guidance and counseling to communities, sensitization programs, training in self-developmental and sustainability skills are shared, donations of basic materials i.e. books, clothes, and basic needs of the children met. KAF so far works with three very big and vulnerable communities in Uganda. i.e. Kivulu Slum in central Uganda, Bupala Village in the far eastern part of Uganda and Busomba Village in Mpigi district.
Kitenge Africa Foundation currently partners with Government of Uganda-Ministry of Education, Children At Risk Action Network-CRANE, Kampala Capital City Authority, Kuchanga Travel & Foundation-U.S.A, 1000 Shades of Green Tour and Safari Company Ltd, Prunes Café, Swangz Avenue Production Company. The organization plans to sign MOUs with relevant government institutions and stakeholders like, the Ugandan Police and other child-focused NGOs to strengthen
partnerships and help the organization realize its mission and vision.
3. Volunteer/Membership/Sponsorship & Friendship Opportunities
Should you feel impressed to become a part of this growing noble cause to transform the world, you could be an advocate, a sponsor, mentor, friend or well-wisher to Kitenge Africa Foundation. You could get positioned in a child’s life that all together we achieve total transformation and a secured future for them. We are also looking for volunteers in all areas, teaching, counselors, social workers, builders, water and sanitation expertize physical fitness and education, life skills, music-dance and drama etc. Please feel free to contact KAF at email@example.com or the above listed telephone numbers. Take an Impactful Safari 1000 Shades of Green Tour and Safari Co. Ltd and Kitenge Africa Foundation are sister organizations working together to make a remarkable difference with in their communities of operation. Therefore, by booking a safari, accommodation arranging, car renting or hiring, air ticketing, mountain climbing, trekking and tracking, airport picking or doing any interactive tour and travel activity with 1000 Shades of Green Tour and Safari Co. Ltd- www.gogreensafari.com you are indirectly supporting community development. This is due to up to 40% of the proceeds coming back to community impacting activity through Kitenge Africa Foundation. So make your booking with us today or in future at firstname.lastname@example.org
Koojo Justus Kojax
Founder-Kitenge Africa Foundation
4. Board of Directors
- Koojo Justus Kojax-Uganda, Founder Kitenge Africa Foundation
- Mark Thomas Jones-United Kingdom, C.E.O-Horn of Africa Business Assn.
- Janet White-U.S.A, Global Health Fellow, Pfizer Pharmaceuticals
- Vanessa Champion-United Kingdom, C.E.O- Dragonfly Communications
- Charles Morgan Kisiitu-Uganda, C.E.O, 1000 Shades of Green Tour & Travel
Sanyu Simon Roberts.
Project Co-ordinator, Kitenge Africa Foundation
Office: Plot 11, Portal Avenue Makerere Kivulu Slum Busomba Village Adam House. Central Division Bujjo Primary School Opp. Christ The King Church Kampala Uganda Mpigi District
P.O.Box 21142, Kampala Uganda
Website: (Temporarily down) www.kitengeafrica.org