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Annual Children's Conference - scroll down for photos of latest conference
kids smiling

Each year, the Childrens' Department organise a 5 day residential camp for approximately 70 children.  The purpose is to bring children together from different communities where UWCM work and to allow them to make new friends and share experiences, to have time for fellowship & Bible study and receive teaching on topics such as Bereavement & Loss; Nutrition; Basic Healthcare, Self Esteem and Childrens' Rights and Responsibilities.  The majority of the children have lost one, or both, parents and are often main carers within families, so this is a time for them to simply be children and to have fun.

classroom

Robert Mangaga, Assistant Children Program Officer, is the main organiser of the camps which are held at local schools/colleges with boarding facilities and generally take place during the 2nd week of January each year. 

making T shirts

Uganda Concern UK  funds the annual conference and a small team from the UK go out to help with the teaching and to organise various craft activities including tie-dye T Shirts, painting and other crafts which the children really enjoy. 

play cards

 

 

The team usually take out skipping ropes, balloons, frisbees etc which are always very popular.

SU staff

Local Scripture Union staff lead Bible studies and teaching on the following topics:

 

Family relationships; Decision Making; Exploring the myths and truths about HIV/AIDS; Rights & Responsibilities of Children; Self-Esteem.

 

They use drama, role play, debates and singing to teach these subjects and the feedback from the children is always very positive.

bridget teaching

 

The majority of children who attend the camp have lost one or both parents. Bridget Withell, UCUK Trustee, takes the session on Loss & Bereavement and uses analogies such as the River of Life or the Tree of Life to explore various aspects of loss and bereavement and to encourage the children to share their stories.

food

 

The children also receive 3 good meals a day which is a treat in itself as the majority of the children would normally eat much more simply and so the food is always greatly appreciated and enjoyed.

ladies in kitchen


The ladies work really hard in the kitchen to produce plenty of food and snacks for the children.

group photo

 

On the last day each child is given a gift such as a pair of new bedsheets, together with 12 exercise books which they have to provide each term for their schooling and these are always very gratefully received.

 

colouring sheets

2016 Children's Conference

There were 71 children at this year's conference and the theme was 'I am Special before God'.  There were teaching sessions on topics such as bereavement, stress management, life skills, facts about HIV/AIDS as well as children's rights and responsibilities.  In addition to the various craft activities, The Aids Support Organisation (TASO) performed drama sketches which were very popular with the children.

mirror


The children enjoyed decorating mirrors and making paper flowers, as well as the ever popular loom bands.  

group work


They covered various topics in their group work such as 'Why it is important to learn about HIV/AIDS'

group photo



On the last day, each child was presented with a leaving gift of a set of exercise books, a blanket and a mathematics set.

A letter of appreciation written by one of the young people from the conference:  On behalf of all the children in the conference, I want to take this opportunity to thank all our friends from Uganda Concern UK and Organization of UWCM for organizing such a wonderful conference. We thank all the members of UWCM who were together with us and what you did with us. May the almighty God bless you and add our grand mum Edith Wakumire and Aunt Bridget Neboshe and her members, that thank you so very much. And also we thank Uncle Robert (SU) and Uncle Robert (UWCM) for all your advice to us. And also we thank all uncles and aunts whom we were staying with, we also thank our cooks for the good loving hearts that we were having good meals. Thank you all and may God reward you. Bless! Emma
bridget teaching

2015 Children's Conference


Bridget and Steve Withell were invited to take a session on 'Stress Management'

crafts - classroom

As always, the craft activities were very popular - this year we were decorating folders and we also had lots of different activity sheets for the young people to enjoy.

loom bands


Loom bands proved to be a very popular craft activity with both boys and girls!

drama


The children enjoyed performing short drama sketches to highlight some of the teaching.

staff


UWCM staff were all there for the last day to encourage and thank the children and young people.


2014 ANNUAL CHILDREN'S CONFERENCE

at desks

The 2014 conference took place between 13th - 18th January at St Thomas Senior School, Mbale.  When the 72 children arrived at the beginning of the week, they were quiet and subdued; some looked anxious as it may have been the first time they had stayed away from their home village.

However, after only a few days, the children were full of energy and smiles as they played games, sung, danced and strengthened new friendships.

Treasure boxes


During the craft afternoons, the children expressed their creativity by painting and decorating small treasure boxes with glitter glue, sequins and 'gems'.

painting


Other craft activities this year were painting & colouring with felt pens; making small models out of plasticine to put in their treasure box and making friendship bracelets.


girl pasting paper


The children also enjoyed making a large papier mache replica of Elmer the Elephant from the children's storybook.  Elmer's story highlights that we are all unique and no matter what our colour or appearance, we all have a special role to play in life.

parachute


We took out a parachute to play with which was very popular

painting elmer


All the children - and adults - then  painted different coloured squares onto Elmer

team games



and taught them various team games with balls and balloons

football



Early evening football and netball was always popular with both boys and girls

sitting with abbie


Or sometimes we just enjoyed sitting and talking and learning from each other

board games


We also took out various board games, playing cards etc which the children enjoyed sharing and playing with each other

exercise books


The staff at UWCM chose a set of 12 exercise books plus a pair of bedsheets and a maths set for each child as their leaving gift.

The children also took home their treasure box and paintings, as well as many happy memories.

group photo



Final farewell photo with Elmer

 
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