Change A Life has made a immeasurable difference in the children and families they support. What they have accomplished in a few short years is both amazing and inspiring. As a classroom teacher and advisor to our school's student council, I appreciate the opportunity for our students to be able to work with such a wonderful organization and for them to be able to directly impact the lives of other children.
This organization is really making a difference in the lives of the people they serve. Years ago they chose Migerya, Uganda and have continued to return to the same location which has allowed them to concentrate their efforts and chose education as their main focus. During the time period they have been there, they have built a school which now educates and houses nearly 600 children, raised their test scores to some of the highest in the country, brought fresh water in abundant supply to child who never had fresh readily available water, built a health clinic and have helped the parents of the children at the school with microfinance projects that allow them to earn money in a sustainable way. The health portion of their project is just beginning but has now raised funds to assist in building a healthier, safer place for women to give birth. I have traveled with other organizations in a volunteer capacity but ChangeALife Uganda is by far the most organized and focus of all the groups with which I have had the privilege to work.
Last summer I traveled to Uganda with the ChangeALife Uganda team. While there we dedicated a new health clinic that we were able to complete construction on, equip and staff. At the ceremony many important locals spoke about the value of the clinic. Finally, the last person to speak was a man from the village, representing the people who would benefit from the clinic. On a hot equatorial afternoon, dressed in a suit, white shirt and tie, he took the microphone. He said the people of Migyera were grateful to have the clinic so desperately need by the families there. Then he said: "We don't know why some people in a place called New Jersey would do this for us. Please tell them thank you."
For what was really not much money by U.S. standards, we were able to make a major difference in the lives of the happy, beautiful people in Migyera. That's what ChangeALife Uganda does: focused, meaningful help to those who need it. I'm hooked!
I have been a part of Change A Life Uganda since it's inception. I have watched it flourish and expand under the direction and dedication of Jean Semler and Dave Thelan. The original concept was to support the education 10 Ugandan children. Now CALU has 300 children enrolled in school based programs from primary level all the way to university! AND...there are additional programs for the families so that they too can see life changes. Income generating and health care initiatives for the families is growing every day! And the water project is almost completed! What a feat!
To see pictures in the newsletters or on the website are one thing , but to see the smiling faces of the people who have been touched by CALU is another! I was there in 2010 to witness this change! I was able to see the programs in action and to share the enthusiasm of Jean and Dave.
If you wish to make a difference in someone's life I urge you to join CALU and be part of this amazing organization!
This Summer I visited Uganda with CALU to teach Chess to the students there. I made great friends who welcomed me into their hearts in Uganda. Even though I was there to teach them, they taught me so much I will never forget them. I miss them so much already. I loved interacting with all the girls and experiencing what it is like to live in Uganda. Washing your own clothes, going to the bathroom, eating different foods. I stayed in the dorms with them a few nights. i also attended one of their study classes where they did math and I helped them solve the math puzzle. They said that I was very smart. It was an interesting and extravagant experience. I wish I could go back sooner to see them all again. They were very sad when I said I was leaving. My best friend was Gorette and I miss her so much that it is painful.... My favorite part of the trip was getting to change children's lives by teaching them chess and making new friends. I learned so much from this experience and was lucky enough to go with such a wonderful team, which made my trip the best they could.
I visited Uganda this year with Change A Life Uganda to help teach Chess to the students at the St. Lawrence Primary School in a village called Migeera. It was a great experience as my sister Judy and I not only taught Chess at the St. Lawrence School, but we were able to teach students from St. Joseph's Primary School in Nabbingo and a group of high school age students joined us at St. Lawrence's for some lessons as well. It was GREAT!! The students and teachers were very nice and I was able to make a lot of new friends during my time in Uganda. We also saw a lot of people who still need help, and I hope people will help them. Please help Change A Life Uganda in their efforts to help the Children of Uganda make a better life for themselves.
Change a Life Uganda is an outstanding organization that I whole heartedly support and endorse. I became aware of of CALU in late 2011, and began volunteering with in early 2012. They are doing Tremendous work in an area of the world that badly needs all the help that can be provided. My family sponsors a child at the St. Lawrence Primary School and has recently been updated on her progress via letter and e-mail. It is GREAT feeling to know that you can help so much by giving so little. Thanks to Change A Life Uganda my family and I have been able to help those less fortunate get a step up out of poverty. Please support this wonderful organization!!
I became involved in Change a Life Uganda in 2008 when I accompanied Jean & Dave to Uganda along with my daughter and several others. I learned first-hand what living in a third world country was really like. I got to meet both children whom I sponsored -- a girl who was orphaned as a result of AIDS and a boy who was from a single parent home. What this organization has accomplished in the few short years of its existence is phenomenal. All people involved in Change a Life Uganda deserve kudos for their tireless efforts on behalf of the clients they serve.
In 2012, I was invited by Change A Life Uganda to visit the medical clinic they were funding. July 4 was opening day! I was there to assess the clinic's needs. It was a rewarding trip and I was impressed by how much can get accomplished by a small group of dedicated individuals. I was hooked. In fact I have committed myself to helping the people of Mygeera and am now the medical chair of CALU :)
I look forward to going back in 2014. There is so much more that has to be done.
Visiting Uganda with change A Life Uganda was definitely a Life Changing experience for me. I look forward to returning in the future.
I had the pleasure of accompanying Jean, Dave and the CALU team to Uganda this summer. My wife, Dr. Evelyn R. Wells, was making her 3rd trip to Uganda while Judith, Timmy and I were making our first visit to the "Pearl of Africa". While my wife worked with the clinical staff and teachers my children and I were given the opportunity to teach Chess to the students of St. Joseph's Primary School in Nabbingo and St. Lawrence Primary School in Migyera. We also had a group of local Secondary School students in Migyera stop by to join us for a few lessons at St. Lawrence to bring our Student population to 33 Learners (Plus 7 Teachers) from 3 different Schools participating in our "Change for Chess/Chess for Change" Program. It FAR exceeded my expectations, and I am very proud of everyone involved with the Program. We also had the opportunity to meet our "Sponsored Daughter", Sylvia and members of her family at their home. It was an eye-opening experience to see the distance she had to walk each day to and from school. This led to our decision to board her at school both for her safety and her school standing.
To say that this was a life-changing experience would be an UNDERSTATEMENT!! Our time with the Students, especially Sylvia & those in our Chess Classes, and visits to their homes gave my family and I a look into how the people of Uganda live in comparison to what we see here in US. It was amazing to see how happy people with so little can be. The kids were all happy and outgoing and so interested in everything we did. I can't wait to return and see how everyone is doing. I HIGHLY recommend Change A Life Uganda as an organization you trust and work with to help the Children of Uganda!!