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Meet Alon!

Meet Alon!

We’d like to introduce you to a very special person: Alon, one of our ministry coordinators in Uganda. Since Alon has spent the last several years being the “boots on the ground” for CARITAS in Uganda, he has a unique perspective on the impact that our ministry has in his location.

How we met Alon (Sponsorship Coordinator)

We were first introduced to Alon by some great friends of CARITAS who sponsored him through university to get his degree in Social Services. His sponsors recommended to Chris Hoar, our Founder, that we hire him right away because of his passionate desire to serve and his personal experience of being sponsored! We are very grateful for that suggestion as he has become an integral part of our ministry in Uganda.

Alon's role with CARITAS for Children

Ever since Alon joined our team, he has worked tirelessly to help the children in our program, whether that means jumping on his motorcycle to search for a young girl who ran away from school or even getting registered as a taxi driver during the COVID-19 lockdowns so that he could take food to families on the verge of starvation. There is no job too big or too small for Alon, and his dedication to our CARITAS ministry has blessed our programs immensely.

Alon getting ready to make food deliveries during COVID lockdown.

Alon now knows everything there is to know about our families and children in Uganda, and he gains the loving respect of everyone he works with. “He helps to keep families together, to build them up, to find solutions that make them self-reliant,” says Chris. “He’s an extremely good example for the youth.” We’d like to let you get to know him a little better while hearing directly from him about the impact he sees child sponsorship making in his country.

Alon and a family in needAlon helping out a needy family.

How does child sponsorship really help?

The sort of poverty that almost half of the families in Uganda experience may be hard for us to comprehend, but Alon sums it up: “Many of the people in these communities are unable to earn a dollar ($1) a day yet whatever they do earn is all they have to feed, clothe and pay medical bills for their families.” This leaves no money to send their children to school. 

We also see many orphan children whose parents died of AIDS or other causes and become dependent on relatives who are vulnerable themselves. “They try their best to give shelter to these orphans but simply cannot support them in school. About 80% of our citizens are uneducated.” Many times, whole families go hungry as they ration the very little they have. Through sponsorship organizations like CARITAS for Children, the burden of these guardians is reduced significantly, and the children are given the opportunity to break free from the cycle of poverty that they were born into.

What kind of impact does child sponsorship have in Uganda?

Child sponsorship has changed the lives of many children here,” Alon tells us. “In the communities where we work, there would normally be a big number of school dropouts due to lack of tuition money. This affects both girls and boys - the girls end up getting married at a very young age and the boys end up as peasants due to illiteracy or participate in crime for survival."

With such odds stacked against them, it’s no wonder so many children find themselves in such difficult situations! Alon sees this ministry as a helping hand to eventually make such children become self-reliant: “Sponsorship for these at-risk children has helped many of them go through the education system and go on to study in different fields, increasing in the number of self-reliant citizens around the community, reducing the crime rate, building up self-confidence and moral understanding among our citizens, and creating a high rate of spiritual growth in the Catholic faith among citizens of our communities - and the children often teach their own parents what they learn!

Our sponsorship programs and ministry would not be possible without the vitally important work done by Alon and our other ministry liaisons. They are the ones who encounter our brothers and sisters in need, face to face, and bring them into the fold of our global CARITAS family. We all depend on them to navigate the different situations that arise in our program locations: “In all of these stories and complications, Alon has been there,” says Chris. “He’s the glue that keeps us all together. He’s willing to be the good servant, but also the strong leader.

Thank you Alon, for your dedication to our sponsors and children, and for helping to build up Communities of CARITAS!