i spent 4 weeks in the summer of 2010 in a place i never in my wildest dreams, would have thought to go. A woman i worked with wrote a piece about SEW FOR HOPE and FOUNT OF MERCY in our local newsletter. It spoke of doing something with our talents - making costumes for TV, FILM, BROADWAY and concerts- in a whole new way. We could take our sewing skills and TEACH people to sew so they could make a living for themselves. Now, i am used to creature comforts of home... talk about culture shock... but in a good way! The Ugandans were so happy to learn what I knew.I taught a bit of sewing, some basic jewelry making, and a little embroidery. It was something that made me feel like i was making a great contribution to a few peoples lives. Fount of Mercy set everything up for my travel and accommodations! It was the true trip of a lifetime!!!
I volunteered in Uganda with Fount of Mercy teaching sewing and design skills to AIDS widows and other vulnerable women. It was an amazing experience. We traveled to different towns and villages, located near Jinja and Kampala to teach and help at various organizations. I love that Fount of Mercy is boots-on-the-ground-grassroots. They have direct experience and relationships with every orphanage and organization that they seek to help and support. Uganda itself and its people are beautiful. In addition to the hands-on volunteering which was very rewarding, we also got to have some free time for side-trips and activities to experience the country. (There's no where else more challenging and rewarding to go white water rafting than on the Nile!) I highly recommend volunteering with Fount of Mercy.
My wife and I toured this operation in Uganda and continue to support it in the States. We love what they are doing overseas and the innovative ways (fashion shows, etc.) that they raise money at home.
This is by far one on of the most amazing charities I have ever worked with. Not only was I given the chance to travel and work in Africa in the country of Uganda, but I was able to become a major part in making the lives of the blind and deaf community better. I taught sports to the kids while on the trip and to many people, sports would be something that all kids do for the most part. But most people have never really considered that teaching kickball to kids and young adults who are blind or deaf is not just a game to them, its something much more. For these kids learning to play kickball or running races and throwing balls was a stepping stone into their lives and the job training that the other members of my team provided. Once these kids learned that being able to play sports like the normal kids was something they also could do, then possibilities were endless of what they could achieve. Through Fount of Mercy I was given the chance to change someones life forever., while in turn it also changed mine and made me into a better person.
During July 2012 I went with 7 others to Jinja, Uganda to participate in a Leadership Conference which Fount of Mercy sponsored. The entire experience was rewarding and would not have been so without the top notch organization skills of FOM. FOM helped in preparing us state side before we even left and when we arrived FOM assisted us to acclimate to Jinja quickly to increase our participation and effectiveness. Due to airline difficulties we arrived a day late and began teaching the morning after we arrived and was able to do so with little difficulty. FOM is dedicated to the Ugandans and it is apparent in all they do.
Fount of Mercy is excellent in matching up volunteer's experience and skills with the appropriate projects. So they utilize volunteer's gifts to the maximum. This takes careful and excellent planning.
Fount of Mercy is a forward thinking and innovative non profit working to further African grass roots organizations. It is a small but powerful organization that worked with me and my skill set to help local village women. I was able to create and edit business curriculum lessons that were taught to women in villages near Jinja, Uganda. In addition, I also researched and developed prototypes to determine the most viable solution for a sanitary pad project. Fount of Mercy realizes that all women have the right to privacy, health, and dignity and that creating innovative solutions can improve lives.
Volunteering with Found of Mercy was an amazing opportunity. The majority of our time and energy was focused on the work we did with HODASSU, which was a really great, and really challenging experience. I was given the chance to teach a photography class to some of the children there, starting a basic foundation for future photography classes to build upon. Investing in the kids' lives was awesome. And learning to connect with people from a different culture, especially those with impaired hearing, was a beautiful experience. The Fount of Mercy staff I worked with before and during the trip to Uganda were all a huge support and encouragement. FOM really is such an organized, well-prepared and knowledgeable organization; and because of this, I felt very confident and comfortable in the traveling process, as well as in the various activities we took part in while In Uganda. Volunteering with Fount was awesome. And because of their deeply-rooted passion to help empower those in need in Africa, Fount of Mercy continues to bring about inspiration, growth, and hope for the future.
I interned with Fount of Mercy in Uganda for 6 months and it was honestly the best 6 months I've had in a long time. I grew a tremendous amount, not just because of the new culture, but because of the work Fount does. While in country I helped develop a new vocational program, a beginning sewing class. The basis behind this curriculum was to give students the basic sewing skills they need to start their own tailoring businesses. I trained two local tailors to as teachers for the future class. During the training I saw how how the class really will be something that can help people, as tailors will always be in demand. I think the teacher training would have been more beneficial had there been more time (it was a bit condensed in order to finish before my departure). Regardless of the time restraint the vocational classes Fount of Mercy offers provide not only skills but a personal satisfaction and pride in every student who completes them. Fount realizes what an accomplishment completing a skills course is and they recognize this achievement (and the students) with a graduation ceremony. This is just a small example of the incredible work Fount does and one of the few ways they continue to help others help themselves.
I have worked with Fount of Mercy in Jinga Uganda. Our team ran a Leadership conference to build the capacity for the leaders of indigenous NGO's to give the leaders business skills and and other educational support. Many of the local NGO's are run by women and all of them are focused on helping orphans and their caregivers which are almost all women. The work they do is extremely impactful. I am already planning this years trip for another leadership conference as well as working with some of the other organizations that they partner with in country. Another facet of Fount of Mercy's work in Uganda is health education for women and girls to help them understand the threat of AIDS and unplanned pregnancy as well as how their bodies work. They are a fantasic organization and I recommend working with them in any capacity whether here at home or in Uganda.