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What makes us strong

Dear friends

I recently read Anne Frank’s diaries. There she writes “No one has ever become poor through giving.” The sentence gave me humble pause. Anne Frank, who – like a shooting star – gave everything for her neighbours, even her young, innocent life. She was deeply inspired by the power of love, which gives without demanding, which protects, creates and strengthens.

Sometimes – without wishing to draw a comparison with Anne Frank – I sense this strength in our protégés. Let me tell you about some of them.

Secret heroes, artists and life ambassadors


There is Joseph, for example. He is an artist and a role model for many. When he plays the guitar and sings, you can feel his desire to talk about his inner self through music. He often sings about love. By which he doesn’t mean the spring awakening of teenagers, but the power that moves mountains, without which nothing works.

Sometimes a small group of young listeners will suddenly appear. Where does he get it from? From our director, Dorte Budolfsen? All her life she has always had a song on her lips. On Sundays she often plays songs by Joan Baez or folk songs on her veranda. Immediately a small group of children gathers around her, listening, watching and reveling. Magic Moments. Music moves and connects. Those who share it also become richer as a result.

Mary und Ian

Here are two wonderful scholars of ours – Praise Mary and Ian Akumbona. Both experienced hardship, including violence, in their childhood. They are among a total of one thousand scholarship holders who have received a full-time scholarship from us since last year. For all of them, this scholarship has changed their lives. They not only learn reading, writing, arithmetic and language. They consolidate confidence, cultivate friendships, social skills and give a lot back to their environment.

Praise Mary wants to become a nurse. She wants to help other people, just as she tried to help her parents and siblings. What she received from us in the form of a scholarship, she has already passed on many times over. How? In the form of active love, care, support. And all that, has made Mary richer. That’s what it’s all about.

Ian Akumbona has many siblings and only one grandmother who looked after him and his siblings before his scholarship. Ian is also a humble young man with a strong, inner motor. He works because he wants to give back. He knows existential hardship. Now your support will help him to help himself and others. And he will succeed. He works with diligence, empathy and a willingness to perform. He is a role model. And thus also supports his teachers, school, friends and family.

Ian Akumbona is a “giver”. One who gives because you, dear friends, have given him much – despite a bad start in life. We know this. One who gives more than he receives. One who creates positive cycles, whom giving has made richer – never poor. That’s what it’s all about.

Scholarships for the poorest of the poor

Since the near-collapse of Uganda’s school system, we at Kids of Africa have offered scholarships to about a thousand students in need. We support the most vulnerable of the poor – and more than 60 rural schools. Each scholarship makes a difference – like a stone thrown into water.

Financially, this is an enormous challenge. But the success proves her right. Every scholarship makes a lasting difference to a life. Every franc makes a difference. That’s what it’s all about. I vouch for that.

Attack on a Ugandan school

Recently, you may have read about a terrible attack on a school in Uganda. The attackers came and disappeared again into the neighbouring Republic of Congo. Life there has not been calm for years. Also because proxy conflicts support terrorists. While we were not directly affected, we were deeply shaken by the attack.

We know the region well and also support a school and scholarship holders there. Should we therefore stop our work? No. That would be the wrong answer. Especially today, the most vulnerable of the poor need love, strength and support. Even if much is out of our hands. We thank you for your help.

I wish you a good summer. With warm greetings from over 1000 protégés in Uganda.

Yours sincerely

Burkhard Varnholt

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Kids of Africa guarantees that one hundred per cent of every franc donated reaches our many protégés.

Because we believe in each of them! Thank you for your help!

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