The KidsUganda Youth Board was established in the spring of 2010 after ten Woodlands Academy and Lake Forest High School students returned from a service trip to the Maranatha Schools and Orphanage in Mityana, Uganda. Driven by their passion to 1) stay connected with the school and its students, 2) educate more people about the challenges these innocent children face every day, and 3) raise money to improve their quality of life, they formed the KidsUganda Youth Board. The Youth Board is composed of high school students from three schools in Lake Forest, Illinois.
The mission of the Youth Board is to bring together local youth who are committed to helping the children of Maranatha by supporting the fundraising and educational efforts of KidsUganda. Particular focus is on projects that directly impact the education and quality of life of the students at the Maranatha Schools and Orphanage.
As their initial project, the Youth Board undertook the challenge of raising $50,000 for the construction of a boys' dormitory. They were motivated to provide the boys with a new home after seeing that they lived in a converted storeroom without adequate light or ventilation and little room to walk among bunk beds stacked three high. The Youth were further inspired as they witnessed the new girls dormitory that was built in 2009 with funds raised by KidsUganda following the 2008 Adventures In Service Trip.
In nine short months the Youth Board reached their fundraising goal and construction of the boys' dorm commenced. The boys moved into their new home on October 29, 2011.
With the guidance of the KidsUganda Adult Board and CROYA, the Youth Board members plan, organize and run various fundraising projects from school bake sales and car washes to large community-wide events such as Drumming Up A Dream which was held at CROYA in November 2010 and raised over $18,000 for the boys' dormitory. The Youth Board continues to raise funds to meet the ongoing needs of the students at the Maranatha Schools. In 2011, they raised funds to purchase new mattresses and mattress covers for all of the boys living in the dorm. In 2012, they raised funds to purchase desks for the boys to support their studying while at the dorm.
Membership in the KidsUganda Youth Board is open to all high school students. Students meet weekly either at CROYA (400 Hastings Road, Lake Forest, IL) or in someone's home. Meetings typically last 60 to 90 minutes and are generally either Thursday at 7p.m. at CROYA or Sunday at 3p.m. at someone's home. Meetings are communicated via email and on the KUYB Facebook page.
Mary Andersen is the adult coordinator. Please contact her for additional information at 847-295-0005.