ElderTreks builds Orphange in Uganda
2012 marks the 25th Anniversary for Eldertreks and we wanted to do something a little extra special. While we're extremely fortunate to be able to travel the world, there are many others who aren't as priveleged. While traveling the world and experiencing lifestyles and culture is incredible, you also have your eyes opened to some of the harsh realities that others less fortunate count as their daily way of living. Building an orphanage seemed like the perfect way to 'give back' to a few of those who have not been dealt as fortunate a hand in life. Although we had good intentions to build an orphange, one big question remained: "Who would run the orphange?". ElderTreks' president Gary Murtagh was introduced to a remarkable woman, Carli Travers, whose vision and goals worked perfectly with that of ElderTreks.
Uganda orphanage, Abetavu Children's Village
ElderTreks is proud to be working with a young Canadian woman, Carli Travers, who has made Uganda her home. At the young age of 24, Carli became determined and dedicated towards helping those in need of assistance. In this case, it is orphans who have no income, no home, no caregiver, virtually no food and often no love.
"Something stopped 22-year-old Carli Travers from passing six street children huddled together, begging on the busy streets of Kampala three years ago. On this day, she just couldn’t keep walking by them, and instead took the children back to her one-room apartment and made a promise to raise them. And so began Carli’s journey. While this was certainly the undertaking of her life, the Coquitlam, British Columbia-native has always had a need to give back".
"It was in January 2007 when Carli went back to Uganda to resume her relationship with Robert when she came across the six street children, and her family started from there."
To date Carli and Robert have 14 orphaned children in their growing family, offering them some of life’s basic necessities which most of us take for granted; shelter, food and love. In addition to our help with the construction of the main house, their project will eventually house 100 children in total within the main home and a further 8 satellite homes. A school, library, community hall, soccer pitch and garden for supplying a large portion of their food, is all on the horizon with completion of stage 1 to be completed this September.
"An alarming number of young children in Uganda are surviving on Kampala’s cruel streets; foraging for scraps of food, begging, stealing or doing the most menial of jobs. Many arrived here because they were simply abandoned by their families who either couldn’t or wouldn’t look after them: many more because they were orphaned through AIDS. What they all have in common is that they are abused, often despised and in extreme danger."
"There is a huge need for Uganda's abandoned and orphaned children to be provided with a safe and loving family to care for them. Carli and Robert are constantly getting requests to take in more children, but due to a lack of space and funding, they can only take in children on an emergency basis."
At ElderTreks, we are happy that we can assist in this beautiful dream by building the main orphanage that will house Carli, her Ugandan husband Robert and the children. We will not only continue to support this amazing project well into the future, we would also like to share the benefits with our travelers. ElderTreks will be making a visit to the orphange on all future ElderTreks Uganda adventures and to allow our travelers to witness first-hand the changes we can make to people’s lives
To find out more about Carli and her project, click here.