Adam Dennis Puts the Work We Do Into Numbers
Our finance volunteer Adam Dennis puts the work we do in Uganda into numbers:
“After three months at Childs i Foundation, I am convinced how important the work done here is.”
“I didn’t choose to come here, I came by accident. My wife was offered a job in Kampala, and I needed something to do. So Lucy [Buck] asked if I’d like to help in the Finance Department.
I was impressed by what I found. There are many safeguards in place that ensure the funds raised in the UK are spent effectively in Uganda.
I hope I have improved reporting to the board, and helped improve the knowledge in the team. We’ve put in place a finance manual, and now have a three year business plan. So you can be sure that every pound raised is put to best use.
As an accountant, it is not surprising that sometimes I view things in terms of numbers. For example, it costs just over £10 a night to support a child in our babies home. Uganda is landlocked country, so anything imported is expensive. This year formula milk became very expensive with the global shortages. Items like nappies are probably cheaper back home.
But some things cost very little indeed.
Child’s i Foundation believes in keeping children with families. The best way to do this is to keep them there, by preventing the child from being abandoned in the first place. This can be as simple as giving the mother enough food to last the week.
Trust me, that can be cheap. If you buy from the right places you can buy a few days worth of fruit and vegetables for only a couple of pounds.
Once the baby is here, we try to return them to their family. An advert including a photo is placed in the newspaper (that costs £10 for the week). A social worker visits the area where the baby was abandoned, trying to trace the family (typically that would be £5 on public transport).
Often the baby is resettled with extended family. Sometimes the families didn’t even know the child existed. It is lovely to see the happiness on the faces of families when the baby returns.
Of course this is not always possible to locate the family. In this case, the baby is then hopefully adopted or fostered into a Ugandan family.
One of my favourite pictures is seeing Simon with his new family. There were 13 smiling faces in that photo. That’s priceless.
There are other benefits too. Child’s i Foundation employs around 50 people in a country with massive unemployment. It trains all staff, in all departments, leaving them with valuable skills. It spends money locally, benefiting the local economy. It shares knowledge with other organisations, and encourages them to consider family care.
This truly is a charity that makes a difference. To children, families, staff and to the the local community. And, through TV appearances and Facebook campaigns, to the whole of Uganda.”