Action Centre Volunteer

Volunteers who are willing to help with the work of the Orphans Project will be warmly welcomed in Utange – there is always plenty to be done!  If this might be you, please read on! - or watch the video.

IMPORTANT NOTICE
It is important that all volunteers and visitors to the Orphans Project in Utange understand that they do so entirely at their own risk and must make their own travel and insurance arrangements. 
The Utange Orphans Charity (UK Registered Charity no 1160637) is not involved in any way with arranging or managing trips to the Orphans Project.  
Volunteers and Visitors must make all arrangements direct with the Kenya based charity, The Sure Foundation Home for Orphans Project.  Information is available from info@utangeorphans.org.

VOLUNTEERS
The Orphans Project in Utange, Kenya, has the full use of the Utange Baptist Church Action Centre in the heart of the village, close to the Orphanage. 

It provides an ideal place for groups of volunteers to stay whilst helping in the local community..

The following are examples of how volunteers can help:

  • teaching or assisting at the School
  • running a Holiday Club for the village children
  • helping with the FEED500 weekly feeding programme
  • repair and decoration of the Orphanage, Casuarina House
  • farming the land
  • and lots of other ways tooAction Centre 2

Accommodation
Sleeping is in bunks in youth hostel style accommodation on a ‘full board’ African style, basis.  The Centre is equipped with showers and toilets, although cold water only. Visitors need to take their own sheets, pillow cases and towels. 
 
 
This is not a trip for the faint-hearted.  The African day begins very early and it can be very hot whilst working – but a 2 week (or more) trip can be a truly life changing experience.
Volunteers will also make a real difference to the lives of these orphan children.  The generous giving of time and energy will be so appreciated.
 
Leisure
The team in Utange will seek to tailor each trip to the skills and objectives of the individual groups, and this includes leisure time.  So, for example, a safari can be incorporated as well as a day at the beach with the orphans – which is such a treat for them!  There can also be plenty of time for sports and crafts with the children at Casuarina House.
 Volunteers
Student Groups
Many students cannot afford to take a Gap Year these days but nevertheless want to have a "world experience”; somewhere they can go to volunteer and come away feeling they have made a difference. Volunteering at the Utange Orphans Project will enable students to invest their time and skills into a needy place in Africa.
The experience can help give a wider perspective on the world’s neediest people and could broaden their understanding of how help can be provided.
Students have already found that their time in Utange has also proved helpful for writing personal statements and CV’s.
  
Mission Groups
Utange Baptist Church also encourage the use of their Action Centre as a Christian mission base.
Young and old are welcome to experience all of the above as well as embarking on Christian outreach in the locality. There can be opportunities to witness door to door, to teach and preach, lead Bible studies and organise specific outreach Gospel events.
YWAM (the Christian organisation, Youth With A Mission) have stayed previously and several have gone from different churches in the UK..
Utange is a good place to practise putting one's faith into action. There are many poor, needy and suffering people who appreciate being prayed for. Experienced evangelists as well as those dipping their toe in the water for the first time have found the trips encouraging, rewarding and faith building.
 

Individual volunteers
There are three rooms at the Orphanage, Casuarina House, for any individuals wanting to help in the Orphans Project for a longer period.
This can be truly beneficial to the running of the orphanage where there are always opportunities to serve and to give relief to the staff.


Guidelines
Casuarina House is in Utange which is not part of the tourist trail.  It is a typical African village with the majority living a hand-to-mouth existence.  Whilst most people are friendly and welcoming, it is for your own safety and for the well being of the children that all volunteers will be asked to adhere to the following Guidelines.  Doing so will enable volunteers to make the most of their experience.   Print Guidelines here.

  1. Appropriate behaviour, language and dress sense is expected at all times.
  2. Minimum stay is normally 1 month.
  3. Volunteers are asked to work 5 days with 2 days off.
  4. The African day starts at 6.00 a m
  5. Un-married couples are expected to stay in separate rooms
  6. Socializing with the neighbours or other locals is not advisable.
  7. The security gate is locked at 6.00 p m by our night watchman so it is best to be back at Casuarina House by this time.
  8. No drugs, alcohol or smoking is permitted in Casuarina House or the compound.
  9. Meals are cooked and served African style. If not liked please inform cook and he will make other arrangements to accommodate you.
  10. When away from Casuarina House please check in and out with House Mum or Dad and let them know where you are going.
  11. Please keep valuables to a minimum. Money can be kept in the safe. Lap tops are not advised.
  12. Confidentiality: conversations/ discussions regarding the children, items inside the home etc should not be disclosed to outsiders.
  13. House Dad/Manager is in charge of our home. If you have any grievances / problems please speak to him in the first instance; if not resolved then please speak to Pastor John Kahindi, pastor of Utange Baptist Church.
  14. All volunteers must be DBS checked.
  15. Minimum age is 18.

Costs
Volunteers contribute locally for food and accommodation with a low minimum contribution.
 

WHAT TO DO NEXT . . .
Fopr those who would like to know more about making a visit to the Utange Orphans Project as a volunteer or to organise a group trip, and about the costs, please write in the first instance to info@utangeorphans.org so that an introduction can be made to the loval Kenyan Charity.

Orphanage Tourism
We are opposed to "Orphanage Tourism".
The care and upbringing of the orphans at Casuarina House is the responsibility of local Kenyan full time professional staff who take the role of parents  under the direction of ‘The Sure Foundation Home for Orphans Project, Utange’, a charity registered and operating in Kenya. Their ethos is that the children grow up in a loving and nurturing family environment provided by their staff through Christian values and education. Volunteers do not at any time take the place of the House Parents or staff and are never left alone or un-supervised with the children.  The Feed500 orphans feeding programme is also under the direction of the Kenyan charity and volunteers may assist with this under their supervision.
 
The roles of the volunteers are varied such as: carrying out recreational activities with the children, assisting qualified teachers in the school which the children attend, helping cook and serve with the Feed500 programme or doing practical jobs in the house and garden. Having volunteers at Casuarina House has proved mutually beneficial for both the children and volunteers, giving a greater understanding of each other’s cultures and widening their knowledge and experience of people from different countries.


Volunteers make their own travel arrangements and pay locally for their accommodation in the Utange Baptist Church Action Centre.