The DeCesare family could never have imagined how greatly their lives would be impacted when they agreed to host kids from Uganda on tour with the Destiny Aftrica choir last year. By the end of their stay the family had fallen in love, and gained new insights into how different the kids lives back home in Uganda were. Today they find themselves spearheading an effort to raise $70,000.00 to establish a medical center for the kids at their home in the Kampala Children’s Center. The members of the Destiny Africa choir were all orphans adopted into a unique village called the Kampala Children’s Center.
The DeCesare’s mission began when they heard the news that one of the children in the choir, Martine, had died unnecessarily from preventable causes back home in Uganda. She simply could not get the healthcare she needed or be transported to a medical facility quickly enough to be saved. This was a heartbreaking event that highlighted the fact that clearly a community filled with so many children needed access to medical care on hand. The Kampala Children’s Center also serves as a school to the broader surrounding villages and their children. In Uganda, Malaria, respiratory infections, and diarrhea are the primary causes of death among children. The highest percentage of kids who die from these causes are under the age of five. This is an area of the world where more than 940,000 Ugandans have HIV/AIDS, leaving more than 1.2 million children who have lost one or both parents to this disease. The value of a quality medical facility providing much-needed health services to the Kampala Children’s Centre, and its surrounding communities, can not be emphasized enough.
The DeCesare’s quickly assembled a team of volunteers and set their goal to raise $70,000 by June of 2014 so that construction on the medical facility could begin right away. As of today, through fundraising efforts and tickets sold to an upcoming Gala Event on May 15, 2014 at The Newport Yachting Center, ground on the facility has been broken, and they are a third of the way to their fundraising goal. They are a truly incredible couple, dynamically talented, and a testament to what can be achieved by just two people when they set their mind to it.
The Kampala Children’s Center was founded by Arnold Muwonge and his wife after initially taking in several local children who had been left orphans by the AIDs epidemic in Uganda. When more and more kids began to show up on their doorstep needing food and shelter, he knew that he had to establish a place for them. Children are adopted by the Kampala Children’s Center to live in group homes on campus with a den mother. In this way they become part of the greater family of the center. The Destiny Africa choir began with the children routinely singing with their den mothers, and coming to realize that others might want to hear their music too. Through music, dance and the art of choir the kids share their story of hope and the ability to change lives. Through their musical tour the Destiny Africa children have captured the hearts of many along the way. This is how they came into the DeCesare’s life, impacting a change to their lives for sure.
The rebel war in northen Uganda left over 1.5 million displaced people. Meanwhile, HIV/AIDS claims the lives of thousands, leaving many children orphaned and struggling for survival. Desperate poverty traps many living in the city centre slums. Children are suffering from malnutrition and are left vulnerable to child labour and violent physical and sexual abuse. These are the children we are reaching out to help.-Kampala Children’s Center
If you would like to be part of this incredible project to improve the lives of children who have been through so much, here are some ways you can help:
Click here to buy tickets to the event in Newport Rhode Island
Click here to donate to the Kampala Children’s Center For hope & Wellness
Click here to learn more and see the beautiful website Nick DeCesare built