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ChildFund receives USAID grant to assist orphaned and homeless children in Uganda

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Contact: Betsy Edwards



ChildFund receives USAID grant to assist orphaned and homeless children in Uganda

RICHMOND, Va.- Aug. 13, 2014 - Ugandan children living in child care institutions or on the street will soon be reunited with their biological families or placed with other families through a ChildFund International pilot program funded by a three-year, $4.4 million grant from United States Agency for International Development (USAID) through the Advancing Partners & Communities (APC) Project. ChildFund is partnering with the Displaced Children and Orphans Fund (DCOF) and APC to develop programs addressing a growing number of children living outside of family care.

With guidance from DCOF, JSI Research & Training Institute, Inc. and ChildFund International, ChildFund’s Uganda office will improve existing institutions, strengthen family-based care and implement the National Alternative Care Framework, developed by the government of Uganda to ensure family-based care is prioritized for all children.

Nearly 57,000 children in Uganda (out of a national population of 37.5 million) live in child care institutions, and an additional 10,000 children live on the streets. Orphanages specifically for babies multiplied from an estimated 35 in the mid-1990s to more than 500 in 2012.

“This project will strengthen informal child protection mechanisms, mobilize communities to monitor children’s well-being and strengthen household finances and parenting skills,” says Gregory Kearns, director, strategic partnerships & grants for ChildFund. “The project will train and engage the community, including role models, community leaders and faith-based organizations to support family-based care.”

Some of the major factors that result in children living in the streets or the over-reliance on child care institutions include violence and abuse within the home, family breakdown, poverty, high prevalence of alcoholism and substance abuse, psychosocial distress, gender-based violence and harmful cultural practices that precipitate child abandonment. These conditions are often more severe in war-affected Northern Uganda, where post-traumatic stress disorder, trauma and depression are common and poverty is widespread.

During the three years of the project, ChildFund Uganda and its consortium partners, Transcultural Psychosocial Organization (TPO) Uganda and Retrak, will improve the overall well-being – nutrition, shelter and access to healthcare – for 43,000 vulnerable children through their enrollment in the project and reunite more than 2,000 children living in institutional care or on the streets with their biological families or be placed into alternative family-based care.


About ChildFund

ChildFund International is a global child development and protection agency serving more than 18.1 million children and family members in 30 countries. For 75 years, we have helped the world's deprived, excluded and vulnerable children survive and thrive to reach their full potential and become leaders of enduring change. As a member of ChildFund Alliance, we create supportive environments in which children can flourish. To learn more about ChildFund, visit

About Retrak

Retrak is a UK-based international charity that has been working with street children for 20 years. Our vision is a world where no child is forced to live on the street. We work to transform highly vulnerable children’s lives, preserve families, empower communities and give each of them a voice. Today, Retrak provides support to children and families in Uganda, Ethiopia, Kenya and Malawi. In 2013, Retrak worked with over 18,000 beneficiaries in Africa, providing children living on the streets with food, shelter, education and training, legal support, psychosocial support, family tracing, supported reunification, income generation activities and follow-up care. To prevent children coming to the streets in the first place, we support families, caregivers and communities. Parenting training, child protection education and self-help groups help address the root causes of why children are on the streets. For more information on Retrak, please visit the website

About TPO Uganda

TPO Uganda is a Ugandan national non-governmental organization that is operating in over 20 districts in Uganda. Throughout its 20-year existence, TPO Uganda has reached out to communities in the most remote parts of the country and in the great lakes region as well as to families affected by conflict, displacement and other disasters with essential interventions covering psychosocial support and trauma healing, child protection and community systems strengthening. See also

Advancing Partners & Communities (APC) is a five-year cooperative agreement funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development under Agreement No. AID-OAA-A-12-00047, beginning October 1, 2012. APC is implemented by JSI Research & Training Institute, Inc., in collaboration with FHI 360. The project focuses on advancing and supporting community programs that seek to improve the overall health of communities and achieve other health-related impacts, especially in relationship to family planning. APC provides global leadership for community-based programming, executes and manages small- and medium-sized sub-awards, supports procurement reform by preparing awards for execution by USAID, and builds technical capacity of organizations to implement effective programs.