Friday, August 31, 2012

One by One: Doing My Part to Change the World

This summer I had the amazing opportunity to spend eight weeks as an intern for The Nyaka AIDS Orphans Project.  

When I started my internship, I expected to work the necessary hours to earn college credit while doing something to make the world a better place. What I did not expect, was how passionate I would become working for this organization or how my heart would be touched and my outlook on life changed by the children of this project. 
As I continued to work for The NAOP, I found myself striving to do my part to raise awareness and money for the students of Nyaka & Kutamba Primary Schools.  These children want nothing more than the opportunity to attend school - a gift many of us here in the United States, myself included, take for granted.  

The children at Nyaka and Kutamba do not have much.  They live in devastating poverty.  For many of the children of Uganda it means that they may never get to attend school. Girls are forced to marry at a young age. AIDS is transmitted between partners and basic medical care is often unavailable. 
Many of the students at Nyaka and Kutamba have lost one or both of their parents as a result of the AIDS pandemic and most are now being raised by elderly grandmothers.   For children who have so little, they are incredibly grateful for the opportunity to attend school. They all strive to do well on their exams and learn anything they can. Some students have dreams of moving on and becoming doctors and nurses, or even teachers someday. 

When I was their age I had no idea what I wanted to do and very rarely was I grateful to attend school. Now as I enter my final year of college, I still do not know what I want to do with my life. However, I know that I will be grateful for every opportunity that comes my way and continue to do what I can to help the students at Nyaka and Kutamba. 

In fact, I am now sponsoring a little girl from the Kutamba Nursery school named Precious Maria. I picked her for three reasons; the smile on her face in her picture, her goals to learn how to read and write in school this year (two of my favorite things to do), and because she is a nursery student. The students need financial support from loyal donors to attend school every year. I chose a nursery student because I wanted a student to sponsor through all their years in school. It is my gift to a student who is grateful for the opportunity to learn.

There are still many more students that need sponsored, and I encourage you to pick your own student to sponsor. We cannot change the world all at once, but the good news is that we don’t have to. All we have to do is change it one by one; one child, one life, at a time and slowly the world itself will feel the effects of the change. Learn more about sponsoring a child in Rubber Hits the Road.

Christina Duzan
Nyaka Communications Intern
Senior at William Jewell College
Major: Communications

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Vote for Janati!

Meet Janati!

Janati is a little girl with a big heart and even bigger dreams. For the next two weeks, she will be the face of our community as her photo is one of 75 finalists in Global Giving’s Photo Contest.  She needs your help!

You are one of our most important supporters, and we’re asking you today to act as Janati’s champion.  You can see in her face the determination with which she undertakes her studies at Nyaka Primary School. When you vote for Janati, you are voting for all 584 students of The Nyaka AIDS Orphans Project. You are bringing them one step closer to achieving their goals.

The organization whose photo has the highest number of votes by August 15th will be featured on Global Giving's homepage for a day AND win a $1,000 bonus. This is HUGE, and we need YOUR help to secure the win for our students!

$1,000 is enough for four primary students to attend school for one full year!

Voting starts at 12:00pm EST on August 1st, and ends 12:00pm EST on August 15th.
Itching for ways to help? Here are three simple things you can do!
1.       LIKE our Facebook page to keep up with the contest
2.       VOTE for this picture between August 1st and August 15th here:
3.       SHARE this information with you friends and family by forwarding this blog post OR inviting them to our Facebook event “Vote for Your Star Students

We can't wait to see your support of Janati in the form of hundreds (and thousands!) of votes!
In the meantime, we will be posting ideas to spur your creativity daily on Facebook.

Let’s GO!