Meeting our sponsored child after 16 years~
Sixteen years ago, Laurie Kroll, my sister, and Founder of Village2Village Project, asked if I would sponsor a little girl in Uganda named Esther. Since then we have enjoyed choosing special gifts and writing letters to our sponsored child. Over time I have collected a boxful of beautiful letters she has written to us. Last summer’s letter to us however, reduced me to tears. Esther, who is now in her 20’s wrote, “I remember the first day I got photos and dolls from you, the smile I had on my face is the same big smile I have today. My heart is full of love, my mind at peace and I am filled with joy. I graduated with an honors degree on 5th July, 2019 and it was the happiest day of my life.”
Our Village2Village Project daughter, Inebe Esther, had graduated from Uganda Christian University with an honors degree in development! After reading her letter, I knew that I wanted to give her a hug…in person.
My daughter Jocelyn and I booked our flights to join the team for their January 2020 trip. It was amazing to see Uganda for the first time after years hearing my sister’s stories. Keeping our travel plans a secret from everyone was hard, but so worth it. Our arrival day was full of hugs and big happy tears. It was so special to spend more than a week really getting to know Esther, who was also hired as the newest caseworker with the Village2Village Project staff! Spending time with all the sponsored children and the amazing staff of Village2Village Project far exceeded our imaginations. Each morning the Ugandan staff started our days with sports and silly games and big belly laughs. Following all the games and sports were beautiful worship songs and lessons. The younger children loved being with the older teens as they happily joined to help. We watched in amazement as nutritious meals for more than 100 children were cooked over only a wood burning fire. Breakfast and lunch felt like huge family gatherings with brothers and sisters of all ages. There was such genuine love between the children and the incredibly dedicated and hardworking staff. The joy was contagious, and we were blessed to be a part of it all.
In the evenings our team spent time traveling to the remote homes of orphaned and at-risk children being considered for Village2Village Project sponsorship. Seeing the living conditions was distressing and it was heart wrenching to learn their stories. Days later when the children and their guardians came to the V2V site to join the group, we watched these fragile children transform. Healthy meals and a chance to play and sing with all the other children brought them to life. We happily watched as new friendships formed.
It was a stark reminder that each of our sponsored children’s lives began with a heart wrenching story… but with the love, education, and medical support that sponsors provide, along with the special gifts and letters, each child gets a chance to rewrite their story.
I am thrilled to say we have come full circle. Our daughter, Jocelyn, is sponsor to Aguyo Anna Grace. Our son, Ryan, is sponsor to Opio James. My husband and I now sponsor a little girl named Igonu Florence. And, after all these years of exchanging letters, Inebe Esther and I are exchanging texts and emails as we work together with Village2Village Project.
Village2Village Project is a nonprofit that is truly changing lives.
I have been connect with V2V for a few years now. This is a great organization run by dedicated individuals. Being able to sponsor two children and be able to see and hear from them is life altering. I am the one being blessed by seeing how they are being taken care of.
Village2Village Project continues its essential mission to change the lives of the children in its program and the surrounding community with care and compassion. The children in the village learn respect, confidence, and that they have an important place in the world. The children then can then become engaged participants in their communities. This year I became a sponsor of a smart, thoughtful young lady who writes eloquent letters telling me of her days and her dreams. Our children are our future! Could there be anything more important than to nurture our children?
Laurie started this non-profit with a few hundred dollars and conviction! V2V now serves well over 100 children - providing education and love. This growth and success are directly attributable to Laurie's vision -- and much hard work. My family have contributed to V2V for many years, and collect donations from our annual holiday party to support V2V. V2V is a model for caring and effective non-profits. This organization directly improves the lives of members of the village of Serere - both the children who are served and the associated families. V2V Project is a GREAT non-profit!
I have been a supporter of this exceptional organization for about 4 years. The Village2Village Team invests their hearts and souls into young man and women that have tremendous needs. I have had opportunities to see and hear first hand from Children that have been apart of the program, have gone through it and are now advocates of the organization and give back themselves. I’ll continue to be a raving fan of V2V.
The life-changing work that Village2Village Project accomplishes in the lives of children and families in eastern Uganda grabbed hold of my heart from the first moment I learned about it. My family signed on to sponsor a little boy within the first year of V2V's existence, and have gone on to also sponsor a girl we have been blessed to watch grow into a lovely young woman with a bright future before her. V2V's thoughtful approach to grow slowly enough to truly invest the time and resources into nurturing the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of each child in its program allowed us to feel deeply involved and connected to the children we sponsored. It was joyful and humbling to have such detailed awareness of the difference our sponsorship was making in their lives!
This also encouraged me to get involved with Village2Village Project as a volunteer early on, and I have been able to help out in a number of ways that gave me a front row seat into how this organization conducts itself. I quickly came to admire and respect the absolute integrity with which Director Laurie Kroll and V2V's board members approached every aspect of the organization's work. Coupled with thoughtful sensitivity towards the culture of the country in which it serves, the result has earned V2V a position of deep trust and high regard in Uganda. V2V is known for its many efforts to reach beyond just the children and families in its programs to benefit the general community both during times of crisis and in ways that make a difference in the day-to-day quality of life for so many (such as providing a well for an entire village area).
These days I serve on Village2Village's Board and continue to be so impressed with the passion and commitment of the people who are dedicated to growing Village2Village's impact in creating changed futures for children and families who formerly lived without hope. I'm so excited to see what Village2Village accomplishes in Serere, Uganda, in the days to come!
I have been involved with Village2Village Project for more than 10 years now. My family has sponsored two children in the program and I have helped with sponsor communications and administrative tasks over the years, as well as recently joining the Board. It has been an immense privilege to be part of an organization that from its beginning has been committed to absolute integrity and transparency. I love the way the staff invests so much time and caring into each child in the program as well as their family members- they come to truly know and love these kids and support them spiritually and emotionally as well as meeting their physical needs. This kind of compassionate care is raising up young adults who have been enabled to reach their full potential and serve as leaders and role models in their communities.
I've been associated with Village2Village Project for many years. Throughout that time, I have seen them consistently work to bring life-changing improvement to children. V2V kids receive the training needed to become self-sustaining adults, to pursue a deep and genuine faith, and to understand the importance of using what they've been given to benefit others; they become emissaries of hope. It has been extremely encouraging to see how the V2V staff have stepped up during the pandemic, working together and thinking creatively about ways to continue to provide meals and home schooling supplies, not only to sponsored children, but also to a great many others in the area. I love this organization!
For 16 years Village2Village Project has been making a lasting impact on the lives of children in Uganda and on the communities in which they live.
V2V provides so much more than the bare necessities of food, clothing and schooling - each child is given individual guidance and mentoring, the warmth of belonging to a caring community, and an understanding of the redeeming love of Jesus.
Because V2V continues to support sponsored children through vocational training or a university education, they are able to reach their full potential, not only becoming self-sufficient, but having the capacity to give back to their families and community.
This is an organization I am honored to be a part of!
Village2Village Project is an organization that I feel confident is doing the type of work that I want to support, without the bloated overhead or politics that consume a great amount of donated funds in other nonprofits. I know that the support that I'm able to contribute to is really helping the children, specifically the child I have sponsored and her family. While I wish I could meet our sponsored child in person, I love getting the handwritten notes, pictures, and status updates from her. We have snapshot pictures from her on our refrigerator door and drawings she has sent to us. Also, Village2Village employees staff on site in Uganda, who are heavily invested in the project's mission. You can see all of this and more by checking out their social media channels. They provide holistic support for their health, education, and spiritual life. Of special note, I know the Covid outbreak has been rather difficult on the children and their families in Uganda, but I also know that the local staff and the generosity of people across the world have provided food, salt and soap, and even home-school curriculum to the sponsored children and families during the pandemic. There so much more to say and much more to do. If you're looking for a group that is out being the hands, feet, and voice of Jesus for the vulnerable, those who need your help, Village2Village Project is it.
I have always wanted to sponsor a child but never felt a connection with any of the large scale programs I always wondered how much of my support actually went to the benefit of the child. With Village2village, I feel certain that my sponsorship directly impacts our child with food, education, and the preaching of the gospel. Plus, the organization is small and directed by volunteers just like me.
I have spent my career working for nonprofits, and I can say with certainty that Village2Village Project is one of the most authentic nonprofits that I have ever worked with. By that I mean that the staff and volunteers care deeply about the wellbeing of the children served and the overall project's success. Any funds donated to the project are thoughtfully and wisely spent. To so say that the project is "changing lives" is not a cliché- it is a reality.
Village2Village Project has been around long enough that we are now seeing incredible results. Children who were unlikely to finish primary school are now graduating and becoming doctors, lawyers, business men and women, and social workers. They are finding ways to give back to Ugandans in need; creating lasting sustainable change from the grassroots level.
I am so impressed with VIllage2Village Project. I am humbled and grateful to be a small part in this incredible project; it certainly has changed my life.
I have been a Village2Village Project board member, sponsor, and donor for over a decade. I could not be more passionate about this organization that is transforming the lives of children, which is in turn transforming an entire village! Children who would have starved are now well fed, clothed, and going to school. Girls who would have been child brides are now going to University. Children who grew up in the program are now doctors, lawyers, businesswomen; they are now going back to their village to help transform more lives there. It is incredible.
I highly recommend that anyone interested in being a part of this change get involved; you will find your own life deeply enriched.
Village2Village is an extraordinary example of how relationships can change a community. Over the past 17 years, Village2Village has invested in people, one child at a time, and in doing so, has brought incredible change to hundreds of families in a small village in Uganda. We have been involved since 2006 and have been privileged to sponsor several children as well as several adults who are medically fragile. It has been awe inspiring to see the way that the organization shifted gears during the pandemic to make sure the children and their families have enough food to eat as well as educational materials and teachers to provide small group instruction while schools are closed. We are so thankful for Village2Village!
Village2Village takes a young child in a vulnerable situation and supports them all the way through the completion of their academic career. This is so rare in child sponsorship programs and sets Village2Village apart from other organizations. I have chosen to be part of this nonprofit because of the lives that are changed. Not only are the lives of the individual children improved, but the family and the entire community are impacted by the fiscally responsible support of this ministry.
Want to have a direct impact on a poor child in Uganda? Then Village2Village is for you!! They have children of all ages, including helping a young adult finish university so they can be self supportive in a worthwhile career. I sponsor 2 children, one 9 year old boy and one 20 year old boy. I enjoy receiving their letters as well as sending letters and other items of need, such as clothing, toiletries and toys directly to the children. If the family has an urgent need of something specific and you want to help out, that can be arranged by the Village2Village staff. These children are truly loved and cared for!!
I have adopted 4 children through Village2village. I like how every dollar I donate to the children actually goes to the children. I also like the personal contact I have established through V2V with these children and how I have become part of their lives. Not just financial but able to act as a parent they don't have anymore. Thanks Village2village for your dedication and support all of these years and making a difference in the lives of these children.
Village 2 village is the only charity besides church I give to. I know every dollar will reach this children in need.
I love partnering with Village2Village. It has such a family feel and each child, sponsor and partner is valued by the leadership team. The pictures and updates of each of the children are detailed and getting letters back from the children makes my day every time. You always know exactly where your money is going and what it is being used for and it is so rewarding to see the difference Village2Village is making.
We have supported Village2Village for almost 12 years, when we started sponsoring a child. We have been able to watch our sponsored daughter grow into a beautiful young woman who is now at university and will graduate next year. We feel that we have really made a difference in her life. It has been wonderful to communicate with her and learn of her progress. There are many ways to help the children in this program and we have been blessed to make a difference in the lives of other children in the program through other opportunities to help through Village2Village.
I became a sponsor for a V2V child this year. It makes me very happy to be part of this fine organization and see the improvements in the life of my beautiful child. One-by-one, lives are being changed.
I've been involved with Village2Village Project since it's beginnings in 2003 as a sponsor and a volunteer, and also for the last year or so as a board member. Sponsoring a child with V2V has been a joy- because V2V has chosen to grow slowly and thoughtfully, it has been possible for us to have a very real and personal relationship with our Ugandan daughter. Over the years we have seen her grow from a shy, withdrawn young girl into an amazing young woman who is excelling at university and thriving spiritually, emotionally, and physically. This was possible because Village2Village made sure she had opportunities to develop her faith in God, nutritious food to eat, regular medical care, and everything she needed to reach her potential academically. I’m so thrilled to be part of an organization that has made such a deep, long term commitment to the children and families it serves. Village 2Village Project makes a very real difference in transforming lives and positively impacting an entire region of Uganda!
We have supported Village2Village for many years, specifically a medically fragile adult guardian through the Hope ministry program. This allows the guardian to get good medical care and plenty of good food so they can care for their families. Village2Village does so many great things for the people there in Serere. They deserve a 5 star rating.
Because of Village2Village, Ugandan children and families who scrambled for water and lived on termites now are educated, productive, healthy -- the first batch are graduating medical school, law school and university! From poverty and helplessness to providing bright futures for their families, communities, and all of Uganda, it's been an amazing ride that started in a tiny village in Vermont reaching out to a tiny village in Uganda. My family is proud to support Village2Village and so incredibly blessed by being a small part of this amazing organization.
Village2Village is such a personal charity in that you get to participate in a child’s life more ways than just financially. You interact through letters, pictures, gifts and updates by the staff. It is so nice knowing what your donation is buying for the children to improve their circumstances and to have the opportunity to encourage them along the way.
I sponsor 3 kids from 3 different organizations. V2V is, BY FAR, my favorite. I feel so in touch with my sponsored child. It has a very personal feel to it and they are so transparent. We know exactly what our money is doing to help these kids. They are really making a difference in the lives of these children AND on the face of Uganda.
I rated Village2Village five stars because it has exceeded everyone's expectation. Without a doubt, God's hand is with this mission. It's come from packing a few backpacks filled with clothing, health supplies and toys to an international mission relief project in a short time. I am blessed to be a part of a church that saw Laurie Kroll's vision and with her took action to help relieve suffering in the small village of Serere Uganda.
After church one Sunday Laurie and I were talking about how the village of Bristol V.T. was being called to aid another village in Uganda Africa. Help from one village to another became Village2Village.
Each time Laurie and Michael came home from a visit to Serere, Laurie would give us an up date and tell the story on each new child found and brought into the V2V fold. God would call sponsors for each child and over the years, we now have two university graduates one practicing law and the other is a doctor, serving in their communities.
I have had the privilege of corresponding with James Mutaka's mom (Momma Hellen), a matriarch in Serere who has many times taken in orphans, grown vegetables, raising chickens to feed the children and for profit. She is an asset to Village2Village. I'm looking forward to meeting her face to face one day.
Our church family at Bristol Baptist hosts a Village2Village fundraiser every year. Old Bones Gospel Blue Grass Band puts on a concert for the community to raise money to help keep Village 2Village moving forward.
I love Village2Village because it truly takes into account the culture of the children in Uganda, and what is best for them: empowering extended family members to care for the kids, having sponsors truly being a part of their lives, and for my sponsored child: seeing her take a step into higher education! Truly life changing...my 'few' American dollars make such an impact on her life! But more than that, we have gotten to KNOW her!
We have been donors in support of a V2V child for many years. The person we currently support is now attending college. V2V has done a great job in facilitating communication about the program in general and specifically enabling us to have direct communication with our sponsored person.
We have been impressed and encouraged by V2V's vision to continue to have 'adult' children sponsored beyond 18 years of age to enable them to complete college and have a self-sustaining career. Without this step, an 18 year old just graduating high school may not be equipped to successfully enter the job market and be self-sustaining. The ability to sponsor someone through college appears to put V2V in a class above must child-sponsorship programs.
V2V has wisely setup 2 boards: one USA based for fundraising and communication, another board of advisor that reside in Uganda and can see 1st hand on a regular basis the work being done as well as the needs. This is important to us a donors so that it is not an 'american' point of view in the administration of the resources.
Many charity provide 'toxic charity' in that they only provide funds that enable children to have their immediate physical needs meet. V2V is intentional at providing support that is life changing and enabling for the children / adults to take ownership of their future.
From an accounting perspective, we have always received clear year-end tax information from V2V.
We hare happy with our relationship with V2V.
Becoming a sponsor through Village2Village has been life changing. We have the honor of journeying with our child and his family and see how our small monthly contribution is enriching their life. Because of V2V he is able to stay with his family, go to school, get regular meals (even during 2 years of famine) and medical care if needed. We communicate with each other through personal letters from our child, regular updates and online photos of village life and special events. Because of V2V he has hope for a bright future and my life is enriched by becoming connected with a culture different than my own and actually making a difference!
My family and I have been sponsoring a beautiful girl in Uganda through Village2Village Project for many years now. We can honestly say that it is one of the most rewarding things that we have ever done! The correspondence we have with our child is wonderful! We receive regular updates from Laurie and Katie at Village2Village that keep us well informed about what is happening in Uganda. Thank you Village2Village for allowing my family and I to make a difference in the life of a child :)
My family has been involved with supporting the work of Village2VillageProject in Serere, Uganda since 2004 as it was evolving. We began by sponsoring a 9 year old boy. That boy is now in University, making us proud and having a brighter future than he ever would have had in his impoverished circumstances. During these years we have been fortunate to be able to visit the village and meet the staff and children. Our most recent trip was in February 2018 and it was so emotional to see how the program has prospered with staff, children, goals, and outcomes. We now support the village with donations and have connected other friends and family of ours to become sponsors, changing the lives of people who otherwise would have limited opportunities with education. We see how far a small amount of money goes to a program such as this and it has been inspiring to connect with this quality program. For our most recent trip we took suitcases filled with donations including clothes, eyeglasses, soccer shoes, sanitary napkins, a volleyball net, children's games, crayons, and sutures! It was an opportunity of a lifetime and while the needs are tremendous, the gratitude is beyond heartwarming. Our personal lives have been improved by being a part of this organization. Lastly, our 24-year old son has grown up knowing our sponsored child and others in the program through letters and volunteering in the village when he was in high school. Now, as a young adult, he understands the value of changing the lives of others.
Our family has been involved with Village2Village since 2007. I am very impressed with the way the staff care for the families of the children in Uganda. They also care for the guardians and make sure the ones who are HIV+ receive extra food and medicine. Theya re changing the world one family at at time
I like Village2Village because it makes real differences in people’s lives that you can connect with.
Laurie and the staff at Village2Village all love the children they serve as if they were their own children. What they provide for the families is simply immeasurable in how it changes lives, helps children to thrive, teaches them to succeed. They forever impact the lives of every family they work with for the better.
This nonprofit is unique because they aim to partner with the community, rather than replace it. Village2Village works with a Ugandan board, so that the children and families that they assist see how community works, rather than simply depending on an outside source of income. These kids have the opportunity to study, learn, play, lead, and grow with the support of people who are invested in their happiness, development, and success. It’s been a privilege to partner with this project and see it yield young men and women who, in turn, contribute to their community. What an empowering project.
The connection that my wife and I have attained with our sponsored child Solomon has been life changing. To hear from him how is progressing in school and as a young boy has been a joyful addition in our lives. He is so grateful for what Village 2 Village has done for him and others.
I am so thankful that Laurie and the V2V staff has the compassion for them and allows us to help in this great endeavor of Love.
Rusty and Thelma Webb
As a family we have supported V2V since I was young. My mom had the opportunity to go and meet the young man she was sponsoring last year. After seeing the pictures, videos and hearing the stories of how sponsoring a child can truly change their lives. I knew I wanted to sponsor a child as well. Village 2 Village gives these children opportunities to learn and grow into amazing young adults! Village 2 Village is an amazing organization!
35 For I was hungry, and you gave me food; I was thirsty and you gave me a drink; he was a stranger, and you took me in; 36 I was naked, and you clothed me; I was sick and you visited me; I was in prison and you came to see me. 37 Then the righteous shall say to him, Lord, when did we see thee hungry, and did we feed thee? or thirsty, and give thee drink? 38 When did we see thee a stranger, and take thee in? or naked, and we clothe you? 39 When did we see thee sick or in prison, and came to visit thee? 40 And the king said unto them, Verily I say unto you, Whenever ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
Having been a sponsor for about 10 years and involved with many non profits of many sizes, I confidently stand behind Village2Village. The organization is focused on vulnerable people ina specific village in Uganda and governed with both transparency and integrity. They offer a very personal connection from the sponsor to recipient, with bond formed through email updates, newsletters, and transportation of personalized letters from sponsored people to sponsors. Sponsors can tell exactly where their sponsorship or donations go and the impact of a contribution. This is very different from donating to a large and difuse organization where donor is among a pool of many and recipients are anonymous, distant blurs.
I support Village2Village being recognized as a well run and effective organization.