Fenna Tujjune, a recently formed nonprofit has been making great strides and impacting change in various communities across Uganda.
The Fenna Tujjune Initiative was formed in 2014 by a group of orphans whose aim was to motivate fellow orphans to work hard and not to live with self pity. However, they recently realized the need to help those living with disabilities after one of their members was amputated and became disabled.
It was from his experience with stigma and later being fired from his job due to his disability that Fenna Tujjune decided to focus their attention on people living with disabilities.
The organisation has taken on several projects like educating parents about the children’s rights and how to empower them to live independently, offering support to those with visual and hearing impairments including beneficially homes for those with cancer, autism and also the children born in prisons. The nonprofit also advocates for social inclusion for PWDs (People with Disabilities).
In Uganda alone, 1 in 5 persons over the age of 5 years has a disability according to the Demographic and Health Survey done in 2006. The country is still facing a harsh reality when it comes to dealing with PWDs.
The same can be said for the rest that are dealing with autistic children and those with terminal illnesses like cancer.
Fenna Tujjune has launched a number of fund raising projects that have seen them collect basic materials from clothing, shoes and much more so as to help community’s allover. In July, they launched a charity event at the Mulago Hospital Guest House to help bring a smile to the kids who are physically challenged as well as fight the stigma in society.
They also recently collaborated with Draw a Smile Uganda on the 5th August to donate scholastic materials and other basic needs to the Uganda School for The Deaf, Ntinda which offers primary and pre – vocational training to deaf people.
During the event, Fenna Tujjune dressed the children in the new clothes that were received at the donation launch and also handed them clocks for time keeping and other scholastic materials.
The nonprofit focuses on gaining the community’s trust through fund raising runs that encourage people to donate anything from clothing, blankets, shoes and much more without asking for money.
“We believe we can make a huge impact to communities through physical donations as opposed to cash since people are more willing to trust us with them other than money. Many have had negative experiences with nonprofits and we want to change that’’ according to one of the members.
Fenna Tujjune is looking to the future and plans to run more fundraising community projects that can help make a difference and to change the nation’s perception towards the disabled.
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Allan Bangirana is a freelance writer for Newslibre and Spur Magazine. He is also the co-founder of the Innovware project and a freelance consultant passionate about tech, programming, games and entertainment.