Bulungi means: ‘I am doing fine’. A great name for our foundation.
If you ask in Luganda or Lusogo (the two most common languages spoken near Jinja and Kampala, Uganda) ‘Oli otya?’ (How are you?) You will always get the answer, ‘Bulungi’ (I’m doing well).
Development Aid on a small scale
Bulungi, is the perfect name for a foundation that gives children (with disability’s) in Uganda a helping hand. Our focus is our house in Kampala: Merette’s House. Before 2018 the seven children with multiple disabilities lived in an independent house in Kampala. In the summer of 2018 the Children moved and they have been living in a house with a Ugandan foundation (Special Children, Special People) ever since. They receive healthy food and the right treatment. But most important the get the love and attention they deserve.
By accommodating ‘Merette’s House’ at Special Children, Special People we are able to offer the children all the help they need to develop and have a good quality of live: there are more children (to play with) during the day and there is more staff (trained according to Ugandan standards) available. By joining forces we can buy in the needed knowledge and care.
The children’s experiences are extremely positive. There are many activities available for the children and they enjoy the presence of other children during the day. There also is a physiotherapist available who treats our children on a regular basis.
In addition, Bulungi supports children in other places. For example in special classes at regular schools or individually.
Small-scaled, without interference of the government or large organizations, but with local people within local communities. Of course we also try to help adults with a disability if possible, but our focus is on children.
Having a disability in Uganda
In Uganda, children with a (intellectual) disability have no chance to develop themselves. Uganda is poor, people have difficulties in their day to day lives. Children with disabilities are seen as scary, bewitched or punished by God. Parents often have (many) more children. That’s why it’s no wonder that children with a disability are literally ‘neglected’ children.
Bulungi tries to make a difference for Fahad, Federes, Mariam, Maria, Emma, Yosephina and many more children by offering the a safe, warm and loving home. By offering them opportunities to develop, no matter how small the steps may be. By giving them proper (medical) care, but most important by letting them know that they are perfect just the way they are.
This lovely lady is Merette: she is the main source of inspiration for Bulungi. She has Down syndrome.
Merette grew up as the middle sister between Renate and Roosmarijn. She functions at the level of a five year old, but has over 30 years of life experience, what sometimes makes quite an extraordinary and wonderful combination. She lives in her ‘own house’ with 24 hour care and she works in a craft shop where she makes beautiful paintings, ceramics and paper Mache dishes. She sports on a regular basis, goes to concerts and musicals, participates in the Special Olympics and travels around the globe. She’s been travelling by caravan in Europa, hanging out in Paris and went to Turkey and Tunisia by plane.
She also travelled to Indonesia (her grandfather’s country) with her entire family and last but not least: she went to Uganda to see what Renate was up to. In short, a woman of the world.
Thinking in possibilities
We have learned not to look at what Merette cannot do, but at what she can do! She has learned so much: with baby steps, patience but above all with a lot of love. People around Merette have shown her that she can be who she is. That despite the intellectual disability she had, is no less than other people.
We want to share Merette’s experience in Uganda.
How can I help?
Taking care of the children is expensive. We need money for housing, food, (medical) care and clothing, but above all for the actual caretakers of the children. Bulungi is completely depending on donations to take care of the children.
Would you like to help Bulungi? That’s great! You can help us in various ways. For example by becoming a volunteer in the Netherlands, for campaigning, fundraising or making your online purchases through Sponsorkliks. You can donate money once, or become one of our regular donors.
Would you like to help Bulungi or do you want receive more information? Please send an e-mail to email@example.com