African Hearts Community Organization (African Hearts) is a Christian, non-governmental organization (NGO) operating in Uganda, East Africa. A grassroots charity, African Hearts was established in 2001 to help address the growing numbers of children and youth living on the streets of Kampala. Forced to the streets by the death of parents, family abandonment, violence, or hardship at home, street life leaves children exposed to exploitation, abuse, addiction, and extreme poverty.
In 2010, African Hearts became the first Engage Hope ministry partner in Uganda. Since that time, Engage Hope and its generous donors have been able to partner with African Hearts in many areas of their ministry. Following are some of the programs and projects run by African Hearts that Engage Hope has participated in to help them further their mission:
Transition Home - African Hearts currently operates a residential children’s home, the Transition Home, in Ssenge (approximately 30kms outside of Kampala). Children who reside in this home are provided with shelter, food, love, education, and the other necessities of life, as well as programs to re-integrate them into society. The home usually houses 16 former street boys who were rescued from the Kisenyi Slums. They are home-schooled, discipled, and then transitioned into the African Hearts Junior School. Engage Hope provides funding for the monthly operation of the home.
Daily Slum Feeding – African Hearts has a slum ministry where they feed about 80-120 slum boys daily in Kisenyi Slum. They teach them the gospel of Christ, basic literacy skills, and provide minor medical care. Some of these boys are taken from the slum to the African Hearts Transition Home to start a new life. Engage Hope provides funding for the food used to feed the boys daily as well as for hernia surgeries and other minor medical and dental procedures for the boys in the Kisenyi Slum.
African Hearts Junior School – African Hearts Junior School offers a holistic educational program, which provides over 500 students (boarding and day pupils) with spiritual support, two meals per day, school supplies, and health care. Extracurricular activities for the students include dance, debate, chess, music, and sports. Engage Hope provided funds for various projects and initiatives at the school, including:
• daily feeding of the children attending the school
• construction of the medical clinic, purchase of medications, and the nurse’s salary
• drilled a well to provide the children with fresh water
• construction of a new dormitory
• funding for a new generator
• completed construction of the Early Childhood Education Building
Pastor’s Conference – African Hearts and Engage Hope joined forces to coordinate and hold a pastor’s conference for pastors in the area. Engage Hope provided funding for the conference.
Youth Business Fellowship – African Hearts began this program to help young new business owners obtain small business loans to start new business ventures. The program also helps young new business owners create a savings plan. Engage Hope provided seed money for the first small business loans offered by the Youth Business Fellowship program.
Hummingbird House - Girls who find themselves in the slums or grow up in the slums are often exploited sexually from as young as 12 years old. Many are ‘lured’ to a life of prostitution with the ‘reward’ that they may be able to have a place to sleep and occasionally get something to eat. Hummingbird House is a ministry to rescue these young girls living in the slums. Girls are given the opportunity to move into the Hummingbird House where they can attend school and learn skills to help them become self-sufficient. Engage Hope provides monthly rent and funding for the operation of the Hummingbird House.
Kyerima School – Engage Hope raised funds to repair the damaged roof at the school in the African Heart’s Village of Hope project in Kyerima, Uganda.
In addition to helping African Hearts with their programs, Engage Hope has initiatives that offer assistance in the following ways:
Sponsor-a-Child – Through Engage Hope, generous individuals from the United States sponsor children in the African Hearts program to provide them with a Christian education, minor medical care, a daily meal, and the teaching of life skills to enable self-sufficiency.
Short-Term Mission Trips – Each March Engage Hope sponsors a team of students from Prestonwood Christian Academy (PCA) on a short-term mission trip to Uganda. African Hearts is always on their itinerary. The PCA students visit the African Hearts Junior School and share the gospel with the children through Bible stories and arts and crafts. They also share and interact with the children from the Transition Home and have a yearly soccer match with the boys from the Kisenyi Slum Ministry.
In June and July, Engage Hope coordinates trips for two to three teams traveling to Uganda. These teams visit African Hearts Junior School in addition to interacting with the children from the Transition Home, Hummingbird House, and Kisenyi Slum Ministry. The teams also provide medical clinics, teacher training, discipleship training, door-to-door evangelism, and a special meal for the boys in the Kisenyi Slum that includes meat, fruit, and soda. The goal of each Engage Hope trip is to share the gospel of Christ and make disciples by meeting physical needs which opens the door to meeting spiritual needs.
Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI) – ACSI is an international accreditation organization that sets high standards and offers quality training and support for teachers in both academics and biblical integration to increase the quality of Christian education. Engage Hope paid for African Hearts Junior School’s membership in ASCI and for the headmaster and all teachers to attend the ACSI Transformational Teacher Training.
COVID Relief Fund – To prevent the spread of COVID, the Ugandan government locked down the country, including closing schools and prohibiting public and private transportation. Engage Hope raised funds to send to Ministry Partners to help them purchase food for families of sponsored children as well as other families in their ministries who were going hungry. Also, Engage Hope partnered with Prestonwood Baptist Church to send monetary gifts to the teachers in each of our ministries’ schools to help the teachers who were not getting full pay during the COVID lockdown.
Yearly Meet the Need Campaign – Every summer, Engage Hope raises funds for our ministry partners that allow them to meet the greatest needs of the students in their programs. Ministry Partners have distributed mosquito nets, mattresses, blankets, shoes, school supplies, soap, and many other necessities from funding provided by our Meet the Need Campaign.
Yearly Christmas Party – For years, Engage Hope has raised funds to give to each of our ministry partners to allow them to provide a Christmas party for the children in their programs. The parties include a meal for the children, fun activities, and sharing the Christmas story of Jesus’ birth. Children look forward to these parties all year long!
If you would like to sponsor-a-child an African Hearts' child, please click here to be redirected to the Central Baptist Church sponsor page.