The Abandoned Children’s Fund team has just returned from its journey to Kampala, Uganda. During the team’s visit to our “Street Children Program” we were delighted to spend some extended time with our program director Caleb, who manages the operation of our partner Children’s Homes and Feeding Program in and around the capital city, Kampala. Caleb is a former orphan himself and a shining example of the good that can come from programs like those ACF offers to the impoverished people of Uganda!
Caleb was one of twelve children growing up in a poor family in Kampala. His father was rarely around and his mother had an extremely difficult time raising such a large family on her own with out a source of reliable income. At the young age of 8 years old Caleb and one of his siblings were abandoned on the streets of Kampala. Caleb says this often happens because parents believe that the children may have “a better chance out on their own” since their family could not afford to support them. Caleb’s brother eventually found his way back to the family, but Caleb never returned. For five years he lived on the streets, begging, and doing anything necessary to survive. He said that the most painful aspect of being abandoned was the feeling of being alone in the world; the idea that there was literally no one who loved or cared about him. Caleb said during that time he had little care for consequences, “it felt like I wasn’t even really alive, just kind of a blank feeling of being”.
When he was 12 years old, Caleb was picked up off the streets and brought in to a local orphanage. At the orphanage he had a chance to recover in a secure, safe environment that allowed him to go to school and to learn the love of God. He lived at the home for all of his teenage years before going off to university in Kampala. He said the feelings of love and compassion he felt in the home truly transformed the scope of his life forever. It was that transformation that inspires him to help children facing these difficult situations to this day. He is a dreamer, a truly compassionate individual who does not want to see children go through the terrors of being abandoned or left to fend for themselves on the streets.
For a few years he worked with the orphanage that had cared for him. He was thankful for the opportunities that God had afforded him there, but had larger dreams. So in the early 2000’s with the help and partnership of Abandoned Children’s Fund we established a brand new street children program, one that has blossomed into the massive program that exists today! Caleb said that many people have asked why he never tried to go to the US or another Western country to “have a better life or make better money”. Caleb says he couldn’t handle the thought of leaving behind the place he loves, the children he is so passionate about. He understands that helping others has always been his true calling in life!
Today Caleb continues to dream, he dreams of expansion in our programs and having an even larger impact on the lives of street children! With your help, we can continue to dream bigger together! We hope to provide lifesaving homes and care for even more street children in Uganda during the year 2016! It is truly the love and compassion of individuals like you that allows us to make an impact in the world! Thank you for your continued support of ACF!