In 2003 Peter and Jane founded the Mfangano Island Orphan and Vulnerable Support Center. At this time, the problem of deaths from HIV/AIDS arose more and more, caused mainly by the involvement of commercial sex with the fishing industry along the lake shore. As a result, this left in turn many children parentless, hopeless and with no place to stay. This made Peter and Jane to take a step to save some children from the situation. They provided them with some food, clothes and even payed the school fees for 10 children, while they stayed with relatives of them. The number of children increased to 13 - 8 boys and 5 girls. Step by step, this number increased to 18 and in addition 4 total orphans stay at Peter and Jane's house.
Over the years, more and more children got help from the Mfangano Island Orphan and Vulnerable Support Center. At the moment, around 40 to 50 children are supported by this project.
Shelter: The first and one of the most important points is to provide the children with shelter. Often, when they loose their parents, or when their family is really poor and needy, they don't have a proper home. Either they live in a cow-dung hut which is in bad condition or they don't have a anything, which means living under the trees or in an open place.
Food: What holds for the shelter, is the same for food. Everybody needs it. Before being supported, some children even have to steal food to survive. No child should be forced to do this. That's why, the Mfangano Island Orphan and Vulnerable Support Center runs an organic farm along the lake shore, where several plants are grown including pawpaw, bananas, cassava, sugar canes, potatoes, beans and others. The crops are given to the orphans/vulnerables and the people they live with.
Clothes: Wearing the same clothes for a week or two, all day, everyday - what seems nearly unimaginable for most people is the sad reality for a lot of children on Mfangano Island, because they simply don't have much more than a short or skirt and a shirt.
Education: Knowledge is power - it is that easy. Every child should have the chance to get a good education. So, this is one of the main goals, however, it's also one of the most expensive and the Mfangano Island Orphan and Vulnerable Support Center depends on donors and well wishers to achieve that goal.
Hope: Restoring the hope for a bright future is a difficult task, but it's definitely worth trying. Children should be children. They should smile, play, laugh and enjoy life, definitely not having to deal with their past for the rest of their life.