We at Kirabo Canada believe that education is the way to give the children of Uganda the best help possible. We are committed to assisting the Almond Secondary School in Lira to help provide education for Ugandan teens who wish to complete their high school education but are unable to afford the tuition fees.
Through Kirabo, sponsors are matched with a student. Each student is interviewed to assess his or her commitment to continue with his/her studies. Many of the students have been orphaned due to civil war and may be living with extended families who simply cannot afford to pay tuition fees.
Education is highly prized and is often the only way young people will be able to secure a job that will allow them to earn enough money to live. In addition, the cultural tradition ensures that the students who do complete their own education will financially assist members of their extended family to pursue their studies, essentially “paying it forward” to the community.
Frequently Asked Questions about Sponsorship
1) How do I become a sponsor?
Take a look at our sponsorship profiles on our website at www.kirabocanada.ca/sponsorship. You can look through the different children awaiting help and when you have chosen a child contact us at email@example.com.
The students who are waiting to be sponsored are already attending the school, so we know they are dedicated to their studies. However, the school can only keep them for so long without payment. Without sponsorship they may be asked to leave at the end of the school year.
2) How much does it cost to sponsor a student through Kirabo?
The annual tuition for each student is $400.00 This covers the cost of studies, uniform and accommodation at Almond Secondary School.
It is expected that each sponsor will commit to support the student up to graduation. This generally involves up to 4 years. It is possible to find out how many years a student has left before sponsorship begins, or you can get in touch with us to find out if there are students with a specific amount of time left until graduation. This way you can choose the commitment level which is appropriate for you at this time.
Tuition fees are due in January for the Ugandan school year. If you sponsor a child after January, your money is applied to the current school year, and then the next year’s fees are due the next January. For example, if you sponsor a child in June 2011, those fees are applied to the school year beginning January 2011, and your next payment would be due January 2012.
It is possible to pay in installments. Please contact us to set this up.
3) How will I be able to communicate with the student I sponsor?
Students are eager to write to their sponsors. You can write letters which will be hand delivered when the annual trip is taken, or mail them to the school directly. Many students are also happy to walk into Lira to use internet cafes, and will provide you with their email addresses.
4) How do I know that the student is successful?
Sponsors receive copies of the report card at the end of each school year with teachers’ comments.
Due to the political situation in the region, very occasionally a child must leave school part way through the year, either to return to their homes and families, or to move with the family to another area where there may be a better job or more relations.
The principal of Almond School will let us know if this occurs with a sponsored student. We will then get in touch with the sponsor and discuss the options. Ideally we would like to move the sponsorship to another child in need, but we will consider returning unused funds in the rare instance that this situation arises.
5) Can I send money or gifts?
Since the students at the school do not have many worldly goods, additional money, clothing or individual gifts can set the child apart from their peers. It is possible however, to send gifts that can be shared at the school, such as school supplies, sports equipment and books. If you wish to send any of these items please contact us by May of each year so that we can arrange to bring them to Uganda on the annual trip. This is much safer than placing things in the mail.