Name: Ekanu Alan (prefers to be called Ekanu)
Birthdate: September 22, 2011
Age: 7 years old
Favorite food: Beans
Favorite activity: Playing games such as football (soccer)
Child is happy when... He gets enough food to eat
Child wants to be a... Doctor
Home information: Ekanu is growing up in the village of Bugoi in rural northeastern Uganda. He lives with his father and stepmother and has one brother and three sisters. Their family supports themselves by “digging”—they grow maize, sorghum, and millet for food. They also sometimes grow cotton. Ekanu helps at home by sweeping. However, the family struggles to meet all of their needs, especially school fees for the children. Ekanu's most immediate needs are education and clothing.
School information: Ekanu has been able to attend one year of government school. Once he is sponsored, he will join the kindergarten class at the Bugoi Haven of Hope Nursery and Primary School, giving him a stronger foundation for future education. He will learn and play, be taught about God, receive meals and medical care, and prepare for nursery or primary school (he will be placed appropriately). In Uganda, nursery school lasts for three years and is followed by seven years of primary school and six years of secondary school.
Village information: In Bugoi, most people live in small groupings of mud huts with thatched roofs and depend on small-scale farming or gardening to feed themselves. This is often made difficult by drought, which can lead to poor harvests and famine. The Haven of Hope school is located near a lake, where some villagers also engage in fishing. Families tend to be large, and many adults care for orphans in addition to their biological children. Disease, including HIV and AIDS, is common and has left many children without one or both of their parents. Poverty also keeps many children from attending school, as families struggle to meet their basic needs and afford school fees.
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