Fitzgerald (Civil Engineer Contractors)

New Beginnings – Children’s Village, Nakasangola, Uganda

Written by Paul Cartwright – Procurement Manager for Fitzgerald Contractors Ltd

Having been selected as part of a 36 strong team to visit the New Beginnings Children’s Village from 19th January – 3rd February 2018. I have been asked to write a few words about the planned trip and our planned work whilst there.

What is New Beginnings Children’s Village?

New beginnings Children’s Village is a place that seeks to provide the resources to allow the development and maintenance of secure housing, educational and medical facilities for underprivileged and orphaned children in Uganda.

New Beginnings Charitable Trust is a Christian based charity and welcomes children from all backgrounds in the hope that one day they will become responsible caring adults in their chosen communities and that all will come to know Jesus Christ as Saviour and Lord.
Village

Who is it for?

Children are selected generally from one of the following backgrounds:
AIDS Orphans from the Nakasongola district.
• Direct from those sleeping rough on the streets.
• National Rehabilitation Centre; for captured street children, abandoned children and young offenders.
• Domestic Violence Victims — some communities in Africa still use harsh disciplinary methods towards children and some need to be rescued.
• Those orphaned due to war — many children have lost both parents due to the war in Northern Uganda and need help and support.
• Abandoned babies —babies who have simply been abandoned and on the streets.
Uganda has a population of circa 30,000,000 people in which there is an estimated 2,300,000 orphans below the age of seventeen.

How do they help:

NBCF aims to offer care, protection and love through the establishment of the Children’s Villages in which:
• House parents will be a mother/father figure to approx. eight children accommodated in a traditional African style village. The development was started with the construction of three larger homes, cooking area and toilet facilities followed by a number of smaller traditional homes.
• Children will be encouraged in academic, vocational and basic life skills, to enable them to become productive and self-sustainable members of the community.
• Each child’s medical needs will be monitored, and catered for.
• Counselling will be offered to each child. It is hoped that some of the children, with short-term problems, will eventually be reunited with their families.

We plan to work with local authorities and local communities to ensure that this work done in a way that does not alienate the people of the area, but rather involves them in the project. We want to encourage community ownership and support.

What are we planning to do during our time in the village?

Our trip is to follow on from an earlier trip at the end of 2017 during which the team will have prepared the ground & placed the foundations for two new School Room Buildings within the village.
Our works will be to fully construct and finish ready for use these two buildings – working closely with the local people and with many of the young adults that have benefitted from the support of the village teaching them many life skills that they can use in the future.

We will also spend our down time supporting the children and the existing staff with activities and sharing in our daily meal times and social times – encouraging them and sharing Gods love for each one.
It is also likely that supplementary works will be carried out in the local villages where specific needs have been highlighted. We will only know the details of these works when we arrive and will be subject to available resources at the time.

Our team is made up of people from all walks of life and with a broad set of skills including:
Bricklayers, Plasterers, Joiners and other roles including Mechanics, Painters, Labourers, a Cook, a Doctor, a Nurse and a Chaplain, oh – and a Procurement Manager who likes to think he can turn his hand to most things!!!

How can you support:

Below is a website address for NBCF where you can find a much more detailed overview of the Foundation and of Village Life:
http://newbeginningscharity.org/about-us/

I have also included my Just Giving page where you might donate – this was from my 10 km run that I completed earlier in the year – any financial support you might afford no matter how small will be greatly put to good use and will go straight to the Village:

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/paul-cartwright13

I will be collecting some of the following items of clothing to take with me highlighted as a current need if you feel you would like to support in a different way:

Girls:
New Pants age 5 – 18 up to ladies size 14.
T Shirts age 4 – 18 – not white
Summer Skirts age 4 – 18 – must be knee length
Summer Dresses age 4 – 18 – must be knee length

Boys:
New Pants / Boxers age 5 – 18 up to mens size medium
T Shirts age 4 – 18 – not white
Shorts age 4 – 18

On my return, I will post an update with some pictures of what we managed to achieve and how this whole visit has affected me and the people for whom I am going!

I take this opportunity to thank Fitzgerald Contractors Ltd and the various members of staff for all your support both financially and in so many other ways!

Thanks to you all!

Carty