A charity organisation is proposing an overhaul of Uganda’s orphanages, which are estimated to host 50,000 children, by replacing them with community hubs that would provide education and health services to the wider population.
Instead of looking after 60 children in an orphanage the services could be accessed by up to 5,000 in a community, Child’s I Foundation Chief Executive Christopher Muwanguzi told BBC Newsday.
The charity’s boss says a majority of children in orphanages have families or close relations they can live with:
“Our research has shown us that 80% of children in orphanages actually have families. The reason they are in orphanages is because of poverty, access to education, access to health services and often discrimination – particularly where there are children with disabilities,” he said.
Child’s I Foundation works to reunite those children with families where possible, and help orphanages provide services to prevent family separation in the first place.
Mr Muwanguzi said poor families opt to have their children raised in orphanages after struggling to cope to fend for them, but added “it’s cheaper to look after children in their families, in their homes, than in an orphanage”.