Posted in Writing

What’s My Name Doing on a Ugandan School Desk?

photo of children at desk with Debbie Young's name on
Seeing those shy but happy young faces is worth every penny of the £20 donation to sponsor this desk in a Ugandan school.

Sponsoring this desk in a school for Ugandan children made me feel like a million dollars – and cost me just £20.

Read on for more information about this fun scheme and to find out how to get your name on a desk like this to help give impoverished children in Kampala a better start in life.

Martin Brown, one of life’s enthusiasts

When my writer friend Martin Brown told me about the charity he helped set up to fund Ugandan schools, Infancia Uganda, it was with his characteristic energy and enthusiasm, and I couldn’t help be intrigued by what he was doing.

The charity has a Spanish name, because when it was founded, Martin was living in Spain, and the two other founders are Spanish nationals. Martin recently returned to England after several decades as an expat, including a substantial stint in California.

Infancia Uganda – Helping to Educate Ugandan Children

This is how he describes the charity’s work:

“Our mission is very simple and specific. We support several small schools in and around Kampala, Uganda. The public school system in Uganda is broken, and so private schools are everywhere. The only chance that children really have of acquiring an education is to find a place in one of these schools.

“Now when we say private schools, don’t think of it in the same way as we do in the UK or USA. These are not elitist establishments, only for the rich. The cost, for example, to pay for an education for one child for one year in one of our schools is £75! At present, we are paying for 28 children. Our project is small and we want to keep it that way, under control and with 100% of the money collected going directly to the school. We also have appeals from time to time for desks for the schools and also for clean water projects.

“Thank you for taking the time to read this and we hope you will work with us to bring some light into the kids’ worlds.”

How You Can Help

There are various ways in which donors can sponsor the charity, but the particular programme that sparked my imagination was its appeal to sponsor a desk.

Just £20 will pay for a new wooden desk to seat up to four eager pupils, and as you can see from the photo, the desks are built to last!

The charity is pleased to recognise the donor by painting the name of their choice on the front of the desk, and sending a photo of it to the donor.

picture of children at desk with Martin, Hope and Ali painted on it
This photo of Martin’s family’s desk made me want one too!

When I shared the sponsorship opportunity with author friends at the Alliance of Independent Authors, there was a rush of donations, with us all loving the idea of having our pen names on desks. Martin thought the children would be thrilled to know their desks were sponsored by writers.

But you can have whatever names you like inscribed – your family name, your business name, or someone whom you’d like to commemorate.

So if you’d like to sponsor a desk with Infancia Uganda, or to support this delightful charity in any other way, click here for more information.#

Thank you. 

Author:

English author of warm, witty novels including the popular Sophie Sayers Village Mysteries, set in the Cotswolds Founder and director of the Hawkesbury Upton Literature Festival Advisor to the Alliance of Independent Authors Ambassador for the children's reading charity, Read for Good, and the Type 1 Diabetes charity JDRF

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