Build with Us
Founder of Angel’s Centre, Rose with her Son Abryl
Centre for Children with Special Needs (ACCSN) was formed by parents of
children with disabilities. The main aim in forming this centre was to
find a place where children with special needs could come to learn and
interact; be supported in their physical, emotional and social
development. It is also to bring parents together to share how they are
coping with raising children with disabilities, in addition to
supporting each with practical information and advice on how to access
services and resources. Often parents can be left with very little
information about disabilities.
Angels Center was founded by Rose and Alfred, a couple that is raising a child with Down syndrome. The organization was established in July, 2012 when the founders held a fundraising event in IVCA in Antwerp, Belgium.
Core programs areas include
Early learning for children with special needs.
Provision of integrated therapy services such as occupational, speech & language therapy, hydro therapy and physiotherapy.
Counselling and guidance for parents /guardians.
Access to health care and nutrition and Income generating to households.
Inclusive education and Community Based Rehabilitation.
In Africa, with specific reference to Uganda, children with mental &
developmental problems are mostly denied access to basic needs such as
education, shelter, clothing, food and health care. Most families hide
them in their houses because they are regarded as an “ancestral curse or
punishment for wrong doings”. These children with disabilities come
from very vulnerable households who constantly struggle to cope with
disability. First and foremost, these children need access to basic
health care, especially at an early age where their disability can cause
many health complications. Secondly, these children need access to
basic education and care.
Lack of access to better health care services has caused high levels of child mortality in children under 5 years old – these children have a higher risk of death due to common childhood illness such as diarrhoea, pneumonia, malaria and low immunity. These children also need to be supported with improved nutrition and dietary needs. For the most vulnerable families of children with special needs, it is a great challenge to address the nutrition requirements for these children. This is very important in the development process of the child and with building their immunity. Physical and material support such as providing assistive devices like wheelchairs, walking frames, cerebral palsy chairs and various other therapeutic aids is very important for providing the proper care of these children.
Due to the Angel’s Centre being one of a small number of centres providing special needs care, in a country of approximately 40 million, we simply do not have the capacity to care for all those who need our help. At the small space we rent in Nansana, overcrowding has become an issue, and sadly a lot of special needs children have been turned away from the centre due to capacity issues. At this moment we only have the space to help around 20 children on a daily base. To address this, we as Angel’s Centre for Children with Special Needs, have bought 3 hectares of land in Wakiso, Kampala. We are planning to build a new centre that can cater for over 100 children with special needs. In the centre, there will be different classrooms to categorize the children by their level of ability to work on their own skills and by their own capabilities. These classrooms will also have their own hygiene facilities. The kids will have both an inside and an outside playground that are safe and appropriate for them to play on. We are also building a general room for recreational use and for the kids to relax after their lessons or their playtime. The kids also need special therapy and therefore we are building a specialized therapy room. We are planning on building specialized rooms for the older (teenage) children where they can learn a specific skill such as sewing, carpentry and gardening, to become more independent.
Why is this cause so important for you?
Raising a child with disability is heart-breaking, especially in a country like Uganda where it is still associated with witchcraft and discrimination. By raising this money, we want to be accessible for children from all social classes in the community, and to reach as many children as possible. Lack of social services and absence of clear policies and guidelines on inclusion of such children makes the situation difficult for most families. Your financial support will contribute to the expansion of our new centre, improving the quality of life for these children, providing basic health care and helping us reduce the social stigma associated with disability in the community. We surely hope that our proposal “Build with Us” will meet your kind expectations and we thank you for your generosity towards our great cause.