Apply to Join

Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda

by Retrak
Play Video
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Rebuilding the lives of street children in Uganda
Salima
Salima

My name is Salima and I have two children. When Retrak came into our community, they showed us how best to interact with our children, and how to nurture them into being responsible people.

I used to be very bitter and couldn’t listen to my children – I wanted the best for them, but I didn’t know the right way to guide them. Retrak showed us how to handle our children – I’ve learned how to draw them closer to me and talk. Retrak also held some sessions just for children. One of my children used to go out collecting scrap and wouldn’t listen when I tried to guide him. It was so worrying seeing him loitering around – but through Retrak’s life skills lessons, he’s a changed person. He listens to me, and tells me where he’s going. And now he’s stopped looking for scrap and is focusing on his studies.

Good parenting skills make such a difference to people’s lives. Thank you for your ongoing support. We are grateful for your continued donation to our project. 

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
Some of the boys in our Lighthouse
Some of the boys in our Lighthouse

What are the hopes of your children? Cherry (name changed to protect child’s identity) didn’t have high hopes for herself. At aged 15 she left school and began working in the family business selling alcohol in the slums in Kampala. She was sexually exploited and abused, and her future looked bleak.

However, her life changed when she found out about Retrak and its Premier Skills Project, which is a girls-only football program.

Cherry says:

“It meant a lot to me. I wasn’t just playing with my peers – I was accepted by them. I was strong and helped the team score lots of goals. The team believed in me! And my social life changed – through football I made good friendships and got back the respect of the community.”

Training at the Premier Skills Project doesn’t only involve football – the coach also teaches the girls life skills, including decision-making and how to protect themselves from dangerous situations, such as trafficking and different forms of exploitation. These sessions changed Cherry’s life. Slowly her outlook on life changed and she was able to focus on her future. It gave her the confidence to apply for an apprenticeship program, where she learned hairdressing and was given equipment to start up a business. 

Now Cherry can live independently and wants to give back to the program that made such a difference to her. Aged 17, she has trained as a community coach to help other vulnerable children out of exploitation, and leads a weekly football club of 18 girls, helping them in the way that she was helped. She is saving part of her money from hairdressing to invest in her future. Her mum is now engaging with Retrak and wants to join a savings club.

In 2018 (to date), in Uganda, Retrak provided shelter in the Lighthouses to 523 children (74 girls and 449 boys), providing them with a safe place to rebuild their lives and start the journey back to family-based care. The work Retrak does is life-changing for children and families and we cannot do this without your generous support. Thank you for supporting our project in Uganda which helps us to work with more children like Cherry!

Links:

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook

Oscar (name changed to protect identity) came to Retrak after experiencing life threatening situations on the streets of Kampala.  He found a caring home at Retrak’s drop-in centre (Lighthouse). The dedication and care of Retrak's project workers and his peers helped him to work through traumatic memories of street life and focus on shaping his future. As soon as Oscar showed signs of improvement during the counselling sessions and group activities, he was supported to make a decision about what to do next given his age and what lay ahead. He agreed to learn a skill in wielding and metal manufacturing. During his vocational training, which lasted four months, Retrak supported him with food, shelter, medical care and counselling. At the same time, he was prepared for independent living in the community.

Oscar was fully employed by his trainer and occasionally received support from Retrak when needed, such as rental deposits, health checks, tools and food. This was to help transition him into independent living.

Oscar has proven to be a focused and determined young man. He told the staff: “I can’t imagine where I am now compared with two years back when food and shelter were my priority concerns. Today I can afford to eat what I choose and have a rented room for my home. Retrak you mean the world to me for without you I would not have had a chance to live again”. He continues narrating his future plans: “I want independence and I want to set up my own work station complete with equipment and probably also employ somebody. I have set myself a target to have this dream realised and I am fully committed to it” he asserts as he thinks big. He also told staff that he’s halfway through his savings target of 2 million shilling (approx. £400/$520), which he saves in the form of mobile credit.

Oscar’s story and our experience time and time again highlights the huge potential that boys like Oscar have. When Retrak meets them on the street, they are in survival mode and have lost confidence in their ability to contribute to society in any positive way. Addressing the trauma they have been through and supporting them at the lighthouse starts their journey to fulfilling their potential. We cannot do this without your support – thank you for giving boys like Oscar a future!

Links:


Attachments: Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
From street child to police officer
From street child to police officer

#InternationalYouthWeek is just around the corner! This annual celebration of young people aims to bring their achievements to the forefront, showcasing the role of young people as partners in change. It also doubles as an opportunity to raise awareness of the challenges faced by the youth of the world.

Starting at 9:00am EDT on Monday, August 7th, and running until 11:59pm EDT on International Youth Day, Saturday, August 12th, donations to Retrak are being matched dollar for dollar on GlobalGiving!

By supporting Retrak during #InternationalYouthWeek, you will be helping young people just like Absolom:

Absolom left home when his parents separated and his mother could no longer fend for them. Wishing to pursue his education, he travelled to Kampala city in hope of finding work so that he would be able to go back to school. Unfortunately, life in the city was not at all what he expected. Absolom joined the Tigers Club Project (Retrak Uganda) after living on the street for more than one year, over the course of which he experienced much suffering. While at the drop-in centre, Absolom was able to access catch-up education. Following his reintegration into a family environment, he completed secondary school and enrolled at Ssesse Farm School for a two year certificate course in tropical agriculture, before studying animal production and management of Busitema University. Thanks to his hard work and resolve, Absolom eventually became self-employed, something he had never expected to be possible. Now, Absolom is an officer in the Ugandan Police Force. He says that he was inspired to join the Force because of the way that it guides people and helps to keep society in order. Most importantly, however, Absolom saw this as an opportunity to show young people that their circumstances can change for the better, and to help them along this path to a better life.

“I would like to thank Retrak in a very special way for all the support extended to me, to see that I am now a serving police officer in this country; and I request that Retrak continue to provide this kind of support for other young people of this nation who are still trapped in street life, so that they too can find an opportunity to come out of a life of hopelessness in crime and find a better future, full of hope and productivity. Long live Retrak, God bless you.”

Please donate to Retrak this #InternationalYouthWeek!

Don’t forget to share the event with your friends and family, letting them know why supporting Retrak’s work with street children in Africa is so important to you!

Thank you for being a part of our success! We couldn't do it without you. Please know it is making a real difference in the lives of these children.

To stay up-to-date and engaged with Retrak’s #InternationalYouthWeek Campaign, connect with us on:

Retrak America
Retrak America
@RetrakAmerica 

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
The Learning Centre
The Learning Centre

'Thank you Retrak for supporting me in school!'

One of our key aims here at Retrak is to encourage children to embrace education in order for them to be better prepared for adult life. In order to do so, we facilitate life skills training and catch-up lessons in order to inspire children to rejoin formal education once they are reintegrated into a family environment.

The life principles imparted during the life skills training are centered on the 3 Cs: challenges, choices, and consequences. The 3 Cs aim at equipping young people with the necessary skills for them to understand who they are, where they are going, what challenges they might face along the way, and how to adopt positive behaviours when faced with these challenges in order to enable them to find joy in their lives as they mature. Using this approach, the children discover how to think critically before making decisions about critical issues in life such as staying in school.

The catch-up lessons have made a great change in the lives of children. Last year, a good number of reintegrated children passed their Primary Leaving Exam. Upon returning to visit Retrak, Nico, a former beneficiary who now attends one of the best secondary schools in Uganda, said the following: 'Retrak rescued me from rubbish and instilled good behaviours in me that enabled me to return to school. I am doing well in school because I have stuck to the life principles I received while I stayed here.'

This is the kind of strategic, long-term investment in young people made by our many wonderful donors that is now really paying off for these children and the community as a whole. None of this would be possible without you, so we extend our sincere gratitude. Thank you for making a difference!

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
 

About Project Reports

Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to globalgiving.org by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.

If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you will get an e-mail when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports via e-mail without donating.

Get Reports via Email

We'll only email you new reports and updates about this project.

Organization Information

Retrak

Location: Cheadle - United Kingdom
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @retrak_charity?lang=en
Project Leader:
Priyanka Zacharias
Cheadle Hulme, United Kingdom
$78,424 raised of $100,000 goal
 
492 donations
$21,576 to go
Donate Now Add Project to Favorites

Help raise money!

Support this important cause by creating a personalized fundraising page.

Start a Fundraiser

Learn more about GlobalGiving

Teenage Science Students
Vetting +
Due Diligence

Snorkeler
Our
Impact

Woman Holding a Gift Card
Give
Gift Cards

Young Girl with a Bicycle
GlobalGiving
Guarantee

Sign up for the GlobalGiving Newsletter

WARNING: Javascript is currently disabled or is not available in your browser. GlobalGiving makes extensive use of Javascript and will not function properly with Javascript disabled. Please enable Javascript and refresh this page.