STEPS foundation is a non-profitable organization founded in 2014. The organization’s goal is to help orphans, vulnerable and poor children in Uganda, so their lives can be improved. We work to give them a better future through child sponsorship programs, education and family support. We also try to adapt our services to fit every child´s specific needs. Our projects are always on a long-term basis in order to get a sustainable situation that can make a difference in the life of the family.
Street children or children in the slums struggle to survive, and life is filled with defeats day by day only trying to satisfy their hunger. Some kids just walk around all day begging for food or trying to find something in the trashes/garbage that can be sold. Food and other basic needs are their first focus, so having any hope for the future or education is often an unthinkable dream.
STEPS want to be an outstretched hand for these vulnerable children and they need help with food, care, home, family, love, education and safety. We want to be sure that the children get food every day and that they have somewhere to stay . That they can go to school and get an education and even receive medical attention and help when needed.
– Just to see a child’s joy when they go to school and sleep in a bed for the first time, it’s amazing to experience, says Joanna Eliasson. She lives and works in Uganda to help these vulnerble children.
We believe that children should grow up in families, not in orphanages.
A home is the best gift that a child deserves!
We want to help children to be reunited with their family or relatives as far as it’s possible. We want to give children who do not have a home to be reunited with a foster family and a new home they can grow up in.
Needs and challenges
A problem that is very common in Uganda are all the orphanages that are everywhere for thousands of children. Orphanages should be for “orphans”, but over 80% living there are not orphans. Desperate, poor single women hand over their children or abandon them due to lack of food, money or education.
Many of these orphanages are far from well-functioning. Large groups of children, little food, overcrowded dormitories, inadequate buildings, sometimes very poor education and low-skilled teachers. The children are beaten and abused and no one has any insight what happens inside the walls. Unfortually, the parents don’t know how it’ is for their children in these homes.
If a child has it´s mother in life, but poverty and food shortages have forced her to leave her child it’s a better solution if she can receive help in their home instead. A child needs a family, not to grow up in an institution.
Therefore, we work extra hard with children to be reunited with family or relatives. All our children now have a family to stay with. We are also work preventive to support these single moms financially so that they can have a sustainable life situation so that the mother/ child can live together. We have helped many families to move out of the dangerous slums to a better environment.
Many mothers had no job or were very poor earlier. With help with a start capital for a job, many families have become self-sufficient so they now have food every day to their children. We pay for school fees and medical expenses. We also help some very poor families with rent for a room.
In Uganda, many children grow up with inadequate knowledge from school or they have not been attending school at all.
There are many reasons why there are so many children who never have attended school. In Uganda, where so many people suffer from poverty, the lack of money is the main reason why children aren´t in school. Many are single parents and have no money for school fees, school supplies and school uniforms. Some orphans live with relatives who will have many children and whose finances do not allow children to go to school.
Other reasons are that children are forced to work and the family is dependent on the income that the children get. Some children need to help at home like carring water long distances and geting firewood from the bush. They also must take care of younger siblings or elderly, sick relatives. Even long distances to school can be a reason or no school at all in their village.
Education is the foundation for a brighter future. By supporting a child or being a monthly donor you make it possible for a child to go to school. To break the pattern that has been in generations, and give a child the chance to an education. This creates a future with jobs and more stable income.
Reed more under projekt.
We are very excited about all the children that now go to school because of STEPS! Join us now and make a difference, for $28/ month, you can help to change a child’s future!