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2020 Top-Rated Nonprofit

ORPHANS AFRICA

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: International

Mission: Dedicated to the education of orphans in Africa.

Results: We have 3 schools in various stages of construction. There are over 600 students in our schools. Our schools have some of the highest academic scores on national examinations in their respective school districts. We provide medical insurance for the orphans in our schools, some food programs, healthcare education and a permaculture program.

Target demographics: educate orphaned children in Africa

Direct beneficiaries per year: Over 650 orphaned and vulnerable children in Tanzania, East Africa.

Geographic areas served: Tanzania, East Africa

Programs: Constructing and operating self-sustaining schools for orphans that focus on educational excellence and leadership .

Community Stories

36 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Donor

Rating: 5

Orphans Africa serves children in Africa that have lost their parents due to any one of a number of calamities facing the continent: disease, poverty, civil strife, "militia" activity, to name but a few. These children have few options and little hope. Orphans Africa helps to change that narrative, offering education, a place to be, and hope for the future. The OA model of building sustainable schools results in quality education that is not susceptible to shortages in outside funding, or "changes in priorities" . OA provides a commodity that is in short supply: Hope for a better future.

Stephanie A.8

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Orphans Africa is a phenomenal non-profit. Their dedication to supporting and empowering orphans in Tanzania through schools, infrastructure, building business and hands on learning opportunities is truly making a difference in the lives of these orphaned students and their communities. Orphans Africa believes that education is power and I support that.

John C. R.

Donor

Rating: 5

Mallow and I have known Carl and Michele for years. We have seen the commitment, integrity, courage, generosity, persistence, and transparency that animates OA. This inspired energy is the spirit of the organization. The expressions on the faces of the children served, their joy and excitement at learning and hoping for a real future, and the many stories told of their accomplishments, are the reward of OA's tireless work. It is a work worth every cent donated. John and Mallow Robinson

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

We were looking for a nonprofit to get involved in. One that served children. We’ve donated a lot in the past to organizations that feed the hungry, bring medicine to the sick, and educate young people so they can give back to their communities. Then we discovered Orphans Africa, and learned that they do all of the above. But more importantly, they teach the poorest of communities how to improve, manage and grow their own lives through education (they’ve help build schools ) clean water, and growing food. They don’t try to do quick fixes or one time food drops. They help people and villages become self sustaining. They do incredible work and have had much success.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Love this charity. They have a lot of experience and have helped many orphan kids. They know what they are doing.

Donor

Rating: 5

Using the detailed, informative catalogue, I was able to pick out a meaningful contribution of on behalf of my whole family for Christmas. Supporting education and livelihood for people in need was appreciated and enjoyed rather than worrying about holiday shopping or finding gifts for each person, and my family loved being a part of it. The process was easy and I still follow the regular, detailed updates from Orphans Africa on their activities.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I first learned of Orphans Africa when I saw a presentation by their president at my church. Having worked in the non-profit arena for many years, both as a staff member and volunteer, I love their philosophy of empowerment and sustainability. They provide seed money for projects that then become self-sustaining to help orphaned children in Tanzania. For example, a current project is building commercial tanks for aquaculture -- the fish harvested will be sold to hotels, restaurants and community member, with the proceeds being used by the schools.

They also provide education, housing, food, and health care to the children. They are experiencing tremendous results, with kids who wouldn't have access to education actually finishing school. Recently, one of the boys earned the highest score in the government testing (finals) in the entire Mbeya Region of Tanzania! The province has a population over 3,000,000. A female graduate from our college scored second among all girls in the region! She got a really good job, too.

Excellent stewardship of the funds provided. Great energy by all involved. I'm excited to have recently joined as a volunteer and donor through their website, www.orphansafrica.org.

Donor

Rating: 5

My friend Becky Reid introduced me to Orphans Africa a few years ago. She is very active in their fund-raising and has visited the school. They are doing great work in Tanzania. They provide education, health care, housing and nutrition to almost 2,000 orphans. The education at the school is paid for by parents of non-orphan students, while health care, housing and nutrition are paid for by donations. I contribute through the iGive program and also by attending fund-raising activities here in the U.S.

Susan W.7

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I have attended several fundraising events for Orphans Africa and the energy and commitment to make a difference for these children is impressive!

Previous Stories

Donor

Rating: 5

This is a great organization doing great things! I attended a fundraiser last year and very impressed with the passion and dedication so many volunteers committed to helping Orphans Africa.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This nonprofit has amazing volunteers who are dedicated to education and what it can do for the youth in TZ. Our daughter taught Science at their High school in Bujela one year as a volunteer, and was impressed with the students' dedication to learning, as well as the teachers to help students succeed. We continue to support this group because they strive toward sustainable models, allowing them to further branch out their goal of educating orphans from preschool through a post high school technical program.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As an educator, I marvel at the skill and planning that has guided Orphans Africa. They use local resources and technologies in building construction. They use local talent in staffing the educational environment. OA is not transplanting the American educational environment into a Tanzania environment, They use local customs so that the OA school is a model of best practices for the Tanzania Educational System. Orphans Africa is a de facto leader of Tanzania Education.

OA provides not only K-12 educational opportunities but also board and room and health insurance to hundreds of Tanzanian orphans. In addition to an outstanding educational environment, OA provides clean toilets, clean water, kitchens, and dormitories for orphans. OA is providing a 21st century educational environment; i.e., computer labs, driver ed. courses, college prep courses, etc., and, best of all, a safe living environment.

Not to be overlooked is the overarching plan that OA has adopted. OA is preparing the schools to be totally independent of outside aid. The children and staff have their own food crops and are raising their own livestock. There is a clear attempt to cause the schools to be financially independent.

An overt positive benefit is the effect Orphans Africa is having on the villages where the schools are located. For instance, citizens are now able to get clean water without walking to an open source. This is positive for all.

I totally support Orphans Africa.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Orphans Africa is a fantastic organization! I have attended their benefit auction multiple times and am impressed with how the contributions made, make a difference. Their goal is to create a self sustaining environment for children through education, agriculture, and resource development. By teaching the children these skills it gives them the best possible outlook for their futures! I would highly recommend OA if you are looking for an organization to get involved with!

Stacie Simmons B.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Orphans Africa (OA) began as a grassroots effort to improve the lives of orphans in Tanzania through education. Along the way OA has built positive relationships with the communities they serve in Africa as well as with communities of caring, generous people throughout the world who support OA.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I have given in small ways towards the fundraisers, in this organization.
Am so impressed with how the efforts in monies and donations have helped and encouraged so many of the children. Education, food, and clean water are just a few things that can give these children a positive outlook on their lives and future.
Service and volunteering with our local children has given me the support to reach out to others and other countries.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I was introduced to Orphans Africa by some close friends who have attended their fundraising events and was very intrigued. When I learned more about it, and then attended one of their gala fundraising events, i was so moved, I decided to start volunteering in their office one day a week. This organization is amazing in its ability to help children in Tanzania with a small amount of funds and they manage their donor funds with great care. I highly recommend looking at this nonprofit and giving it some support!!

Amy W.1

Donor

Rating: 5

I recently found Orphans Africa and was surprised to see it was located in the city where I live. I attended an event this summer - their annual summer fundraiser and it was excellent. Great fun and the founder, Carl Gann told an amazing story about one the the orphan children they have helped to educate. After learning more about the organization, it was amazing to find out how much work they are able to do on such a small budget. They have a great team of volunteers, and board members who are active participants in the organization. I hope to one day travel to Africa to see their work in action! I will donate again!!

Leslie Nadelle S.

Donor

Rating: 5

Orphans Africa has been able to accomplish much for the children at its project schools. The donations are efficiently used to help build up the school's infrastructure (buildings, clean water, schools supplies, etc.) to enable wonderful learning environments for the students. OA works with the local population to understand the needs and partner on projects and programs. OA has been subsidizing health insurance costs for several years to provide basic medical care for the students whose families cannot afford to provide. This primarily true for our orphaned students. Acquired health insurance and sources of fresh, clean water supplies (deep bore wells) has helped to address and practically eliminate some of health concerns that are common in the areas where its project schools reside.
OA board members and volunteers travel at least annually to personally check on the operations of the schools and their programs, to consult with the local population, school board members and students as to the accomplishments that have been made and the needs that are to be addressed. The organization's aim is to enable each school to be self-sufficient so as to allow more non-paying orphans to attend. OA accomplishments on behalf of the students are only obtainable via the generous support of its donors. It is their desire (both OA and its donors) to bring a sense of hope for a positive future for the students it serves.

Barry R.

Donor

Rating: 5

Orphans Africa works with a "Self-Sustaining" model. They do NOT want to have the people that they help, constantly needing more money. Their approach is to help people be able to support themselves and even do well enough that they can help others.

Board Member

Rating: 5

Orphans Africa does so much good for children in Africa, and we do it on a shoestring.• For just $0.79 per month we feed one nursery school child one meal per day. For many of these children, this meal is their food that day. Clean water, healthy food, dormitories for both boys and girls and education are the tangible items we provide, but more than that we provide hope for more than 500 children. Help us break the cycle of poverty and change the world, one child at a time. Thanks!

Donor

Rating: 5

Orphans Africa (OA) is a non-profit charitable organization that we can be proud to support. The approach employed by OA is one of fostering sustainability through education, healthcare, and housing. When you donate to OA you can be assured that your money is used responsibly and the results speak for themselves! The organization is effectively helping orphans find a way out of extreme poverty, giving them a chance they would never otherwise have. At a time when many Americans are "looking inward", it also helps to remember that we need to be leaders globally in fighting poverty, disease, and those left on the margins of life. OA presents an excellent opportunity to do just that. I will continue to support Orphans Africa.

Donor

Rating: 5

A grassroots charity that not only utilizes resources from western nations but, manages to get 40% of their financial support directly to their school projects from Africans! Hundreds of orphan children are educated each year along with other destitute children by this organization. Workers from the West pay their own way to Africa and all of their own expenses. Reports of graduates from their schools and employment following education are often reported. The self-sustaining model is amazing and shows how people in very poor countries can partner with the West to develop and overcome extreme poverty. Great organization! Impact is what it is all about!

Board Member

Rating: 5

This organization does amazing work in Tanzania Africa. They have six school programs in place for advancing the education of Orphans in this very poverty stricken part of the world. I love the fact that they have a model that is designed to make the school self sufficient and not totally dependent in the future on continuing donations. Their horticulture program, the dorm facilities, libraries, driving school, technology lab and much more are making life better every day for these hungry thirsty kids. They do so much with so little and are literally changing the world.

Donor

Rating: 5

I recently attended a fundraiser for Orphans Africa. What impressed me is the life-saving work they’re championing, such as building wells and educating youth. After a few minutes with the team it was evident that leadership puts their heart into their actions. And, they walk the delicate balance of doing whatever needs to be done with fiscal responsibility. I do not hesitate to recommend this fine organization.

TDeam

Board Member

Rating: 5

My husband and I have supported Orphans Africa (OA) for many years. We have attended the Gala Benefit Auction on numerous occasions and have been very excited to hear the Presidents report each year to see how our, and other contributor monies are educating the orphans in Tanzania. OA funds build classrooms, libraries, science labs, provide technology equipment, health insurance and nutritional needs for students, as well as water wells and toilets helping to improve the living conditions in their communities. After volunteering at several events, I have agreed to serve as a Board Member and am excited to be of service to this great organization.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

In the past ten years since Orphans Africa was established there has been amazing growth along with considerable development in Tanzania. Orphans Africa was begun to serve the needs of orphans and widows in Tanzania. Three school have been established--one preschool, one elementary school and one secondary school, which also offers boarding for girls. For some of the children these school offer the only food of the day. Several years ago a system was also developed to provide for sanitary drinking water. Also, many of the children are provided with the only shoes they may have. In the regions in which the Orphans Africa schools are located the schools have received some of the highest ranking as far as the students scores when evaluated. These children are receiving a quality education. By supporting widows Orphans Africa is helping to provide the women with a means to be self-sufficient. As a volunteer for Orphans Africa I have seen the dedication and commitment of the founders and other volunteers. I have enjoyed working with and supporting the fundraising events of Orphans Africa. This is a very significant and worthwhile organization that is truly making an important and life-changing difference in the lives of orphaned children and widows in Tanzania. I will continue to support the endeavors of Orphans Africa as I am able.

Margie E.1

Donor

Rating: 5

I have been a donor to Orphans Africa for several years and have been to some very fun and unique fundraisers in Tacoma and Fox Island, Washington. When I see and hear beautiful stories of children in Tanzania whose lives have been transformed, I have hope for a better world, and hope is what we all need. I have immense respect for Carl Gann and Michele Torrey and the phenomenal work they are doing on behalf of Orphans Africa in Tanzania. Thank you!

Donor

Rating: 5

I have volunteered or sat on several non-profit boards and Orphan’s Africa is the best run organization I have encountered. The integrity, enthusiasm, and efficient use of resources is the highest I’ve seen. I’m amazed at the accomplishments they’ve achieved. OA inspires others to recognize that all children belong to “us” and deserve the support of our broad community. OA makes dreams come true and I’m grateful to be able to help them in the journey towards creating a verdant, sustainable, peaceful and progressive global society.

Donor

Rating: 5

Orphans Africa and it's volunteers have worked very hard to establish a school and a place for kids to live while going to school. They are doing their part to make this a better world and to give those children a chance to make their country better. This is an ongoing project and they have not wasted my donations. They will need our support for years to come.

Donor

Rating: 5

Their unwavering focus on empowering "the least of these" - orphans in Africa - is just one of many reasons I support them.
Personally knowing the integrity of the founders is another major reason - I know all donations are put to the very best use.
By building schools and ensuring an education to these children Orphans Africa is truly changing not only individuals but their villages and country as well. God bless their efforts!!!!!

Bernadette P.1

Donor

Rating: 5

What a compassionate dedicated group of people. Full of love.

Jerry R.2

Board Member

Rating: 5

Everything about the organization is wonderful. They are having real impact on children that have no other hope. They are very efficient and nearly all the money goes to the children. They have huge hearts and huge impact!

Board Member

Rating: 5

Clean fresh water makes a huge difference for a child in Tanzania. Before we built our deep bore well, children walked to the river with 5 gallon buckets and 2 bucks of muddy river water served 40 children for the day. Now, we have fresh water for drinking, bathing, washing and irrigation. Now they have more food as well. Saving lives, one drop at a time!

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

This organization can accomplish so much for so little to bring education and hope to ophans and others in need of a basic education. Your support helps with school infrastructure, books, teachers, equipment and health care. Please consider how far your support can improve the lives of those needing to break the chains of abject poverty to give these children a hope and a future.

5

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am currently finishing my Masters in Nonprofit Studies and although I have lots of volunteer experience, I had never worked for a nonprofit organization. I found Orphans Africa through GuideStar; what they were doing matched my interests. I e-mailed Michele Torrey, OA's Executive Director, to see if they had any internships available and fortunately a few months later I was interning with them. I interned for Orphans Africa for three months this past summer. When I first started I was immersed in Orphans Africa and everything they did. Once I was confortable enough Michele gave me small tasks that later grew larger ones. Michele gave me numerous tasks from grant and newsletter writing, research on building chicken coops and growing crops in Tanzania. I not only loved what I was doing everyday, I felt like I was truly helping Orphans Africa and furthering their mission of helping to educate orphans in Tanzania. I had an amazing experience with Orphans Africa and learned a lot about what it takes to run a nonprofit organization. I am thankful for the opportunity I had to work for Orphans Africa.

I saw everyday what Michele, Ethan, Carl, and other volunteers were doing to further Orphans Africa's mission. I will continue to volunteer even though I am no longer in Washington. Orphans Africa is changing the lives of many vulnerable children in Tanzania. Orphans Africa is making a difference, a positive, visible difference.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I really enjoyed working for Orphans Africa. Michele Torrey (the Executive Director) really has a passion and love for helping others that comes through in the work that she does. She went out of her way to help me understand the process of grant writing, fund-raising, and creating web pages. I was given the task of writing and researching a grant which helped me learn so much about their non-profit, as well as expanding my knowledge of the problems Africa faces. During my time there, I feel that I learned a lot for an intern, and gained skills that I feel will help in my future career. My knowledge of Tanzania and the work that Orphans Africa is doing there grew immensely, and the staff's passion for their work had an impact on me.