Here are some of our frequently asked questions. We tried to explain and answer everything to the best of our ability but, as always, if you have any further questions please don't hesitate to reach out to us.
“Can I talk to my sponsor kid?”
Yes! We encourage all sponsors to have communication with their sponsor kid. The only thing we require is you make your boundaries and relationship with said child clear before you first have communication. Will you be able to communicate through emails / photos a couple times a year? Would you like to facetime with the child every month? etc. These boys thrive off consistency and stable support, and we do our best to ensure the boys receive that. We are more than happy to have a discussion with you first and answer any questions you may have and help find a schedule, form of communication, and any other factors that best work for you.
“Why were the boys homeless?”
We do our best to ensure the boys safety and dignity, with that always at the forefront, we don’t share individual stories of the boys. What we will say is most of the boys were brought to the streets due to financial struggles, death of family, or abuse. We encourage you all looking to help or currently helping Streets To Success Foundation to focus on the boys shining personalities and bright futures. We take their past and their experiences very seriously, that is part of the reason we are firm believers in therapy and mental health. The boys are witty, smart, curious, creative, and so much more. We are so excited to see these boys grow emotionally and mentally as well as expand their knowledge through school and other various art forms. These boys are so much more than their past and Kisenyi; our goal is to always show that side of them and show the world who they are and how bright their future can be instead of focusing on their past.
“Why don't you help girls?”
There are a few reasons why we primarily help boys. For starters, at our outreach anyone from the community is allowed to join regardless of - gender, religion, sexuality, age, or any other deciding factors, they are all allowed to join us at outreach. Majority of the time, it’s only boys that join us at outreach, we have only had girls join us a handful of times. More recently, we have begun connecting and working with the young women (ages 17-20) that live in Kisenyi. While, they aren’t experiencing homelessness themselves, they are living in Kisenyi and we do our best to provide the girls with free medical care, sex education, and clothes.
With the large majority of the children experiencing homelessness being boys and with the large majority of our outreach being attended by boys- our main demographic is the boys. As much as we would like to help the girls we also recognize the fact that we should not house both girls and boys in our sponsorship program, so sadly for the time being our help for the girls is dedicated exclusively to outreach.
In addition to all that, we also recognize the stigma against the boys, even at a young age they are seen as ‘men’ and should be able to care for themselves. Even boys as young as 7 years old, the stigma against them is they are ‘thieves’ they are ‘bad people’ and so on, we recognize the stigma the boys have, and how hard it is to leave that past behind. With all this is mind, our primary focus will be the boys in Kisenyi and how we can best support them.
By providing the best care we can for these boys, and constantly working with them and teaching them about equality for women, safe sex, boundaries and consent, and overall the idea and understanding that no one - age, sex, religion, sexuality or anything else makes someone more or less worthy of respect and a good life. With this work, we hope they will all grow up to be respectful and honest young men who will be kind and respectful to everyone - regardless of any differences.
“Why is the cost so high?”
We want to give the best shot at a successful future for the boys. We take both their education and their mental health very seriously. We want to ensure that they are given the best quality care on both fronts, that is why we paired up with amazing schools and psychologists within the area.
We are also a small organization right now where 100% of the sponsorship cost goes directly into the boys education - school fees, school requirements, school field trips etc. We are happy to provide full accountability of the cost of any donations - whether you sponsor a child, or donate for a specific cause.
Although most shops here don't provide typical receipts - we do our best to provide photos, the cost, and receipts when applicable.
“How do I know where the money is going?”
If you request a specific donation (IE: I want to donate money for shoes etc.) or for a sponsor child we always do our best to keep you completely comfortable and in charge of your donation.
When you sponsor a child, we are more than willing to send you the official letter and requirements from the school, our cost / prices / accountability, and photos when everything is bought and the boy is in school. As a sponsor you are paying 100% of the child's schools needs, all the money you donate goes directly to your sponsor kid, their schooling and nothing else.
If you donate for a specific cause (IE: shoes, outreach, haircuts etc.) we will more definitely follow up with you regarding your donation. While it's very common here for most shops or ‘street food’ stands to not distribute receipts, we are always honest and forthcoming with our costs. We are more than happy to deliver our own receipts and send photos of all things bought. With your donation covering the entirety of your choosing, we do our best to ensure the best prices available.
If you have sent a general donation with no intended cause, 100% of the money goes directly into the boy's care. Currently, no foreign staff makes any profit or wage from Streets To Success Foundation. All donations may go into; food for the boys, food or rent for outreach, wages for our 5 local staff members, therapy for the boys, various upkeep of the boys for their safety (security guard, rent, water bill etc.) and general needs for the boys - medical, haircuts, clothes etc. And with holidays being a big deal here Christmas, Easter, Independence day and so on are always celebrated with a big meal and various events or games.
“Can I volunteer with Streets To Success Foundation”
First, thank you so much in expressing your interest in wanting to help with Streets To Success Foundation!
We don't currently offer any volunteer programs. However, we do offer volunteers to join us at outreach. Medical volunteers primarily as some days we can have up to 40 children in need of wound care in a 2-3 hour period.
We don’t offer any volunteer programs within our sponsorship program, as the boys thrive off of consistency and stability and having volunteers coming and going can further hurt their attachments with others. Our only ‘volunteers’ to the sponsorship program are long term, committed, and trained individuals that work closely with the organization both on the ground and from their respecting country. That being said, we do allow various professionals to come meet the boys at our sponsorship program and volunteer with a specific goal in mind that aligns with their profession - this may include; teaching a football class, educating about drug abuse, teaching an art class etc. We allow this as the boys view this person as a ‘teacher’ that will come once or maybe a handful of times, and the boys aren’t trying to build an emotional relationship with the teacher as they may try to with a general volunteer.
If you would like to volunteer your time or efforts to help further Streets To Success Foundation, you may consider helping us in other ways such as; volunteering your knowledge with web design, writing grant letters, graphic design, if you work with children you can offer us advice on games etc to help keep the kids engaged and having fun, video / photo editing, creating a fundraising event for STSF, or anything else you have in mind