FAQ’s

Are all of these children orphans?

In Uganda and Ethiopia, children who have lost one or both parents is legally considered an orphan. Some children have a living parent, many do not.

What does Otina Waa mean?
Otino Waa means “Our Children” in the local dialect of northern Uganda, which is called Luo. The name reflects the heart behind the ministry: though the children are not ours biologically, we are honored to care and provide for them as Jesus invited us to do.
Are my contributions tax deductible?

PATH International is a tax-exempt not-for-profit organization registered in the state of Oregon, recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as a 501(c)(3). All contributions are tax-deductible.

What does sponsorship cost and what does it cover?
$39 per month or $468 per year. It costs approximately $195 each month to fully support a residential child at Otino Waa Children’s Village, and $78 per month to support a Community Based Care (CBC) child. By combining your $39 monthly contribution with those from four other (residential kids) or one other (CBC kids) sponsors, we are able to provide food, clothing, medical and dental care, and schooling for each child. We are also able to ensure a safe and loving home.
Will I be able to communicate with my sponsored child?

Yes. As a sponsor you will receive at least two letters a year and two pictures. However, students typically write more often when they receive letters from their sponsors. You may send letters via email or standard mail. For mailing information, visit our Contact page.

What should I say in my letters?

Keep letters simple. Content is a personal decision but here are some suggestions: Encourage them in their studies. Describe your family and include a photo. Please be discreet and avoid sending pictures that could be offensive. (It is a very modest culture.) Share your hobbies, work or school, family holidays and customs. Provide general info of where you live but do not include your address.

What can I send my sponsored child?

Over many years of working with orphans in Africa, we have discovered that the most treasured items the children receive from sponsors are often photos of their sponsors and their families. However, if you want to send something more, you may send them through the US Postal Service. Small flat items that fit in an 11×14 envelope should arrive in two to three weeks. (However, package delivery in Africa is never guaranteed.) Be sure to include the child’s name and number. Some ideas are: small plastic toys, soft dolls or stuffed animals, coloring books, paper, colored pencils, notebooks, stickers, school bags, jump ropes, stencils, balloons, hard candy, puzzles, small games, a small sewing kit. PLEASE DO NOT SEND: money, perishable items, gum or soft candy, liquid or fragile items, battery powered or electronic items, large or expensive gifts, colored markers or Sharpies.

For packages or letters to Uganda:
Otino Waa Children’s Village
POB 117
Lira, Uganda, East Africa
(Please include your child’s name and #)

To email your child:
ugandaletters@otinowaa.org
(please include child’s name and number)

For packages or letters to Ethiopia:
PATH Ministries International
P.O. Box 321
Chiro, West Hararghe Ethiopia
(Please include your child’s name and #)

To email your child:
ugandaletters@otinowaa.org
(please include child’s name and number)

Can I communicate with my sponsored child via social media?

No, it is not recommended you communicate with your sponsored child through social media. The kids are not allowed to have or use cell phones in residential care. However, when the kids are home with families on semester break they do have access to cell phones and the internet. There have been instances when kids have found their sponsors on Facebook and used the opportunity to make unreasonable requests. This rule is to protect you and the children.

How long are sponsored children supported?

Depending on their age when they start school, children usually graduate out of the program between the ages of 18 to 22. While we love to see consistency in sponsor/child relationships, we fully understand that life circumstances change, and sponsors are free to cancel a sponsorship commitment at any time.

What happens after a child graduates from the Residential or CBC sponsorship program?

Graduates are encouraged to apply for our Elevate program. Elevate seeks to identify each student’s aptitude and interests, and then appropriately equip them for a financially productive and sustainable future. The three training branches of Elevate are Advanced Education, Vocational Training, and Microfinance. Many sponsors decide to continue with their student through the completion of their Elevate training.

What happens after I sign up?
After we receive your enrollment information via either a response card or via our website sponsorship page, you should expect to receive an email giving you access to a secure online portal with photos and an introductory bio of your child. Once you set up your personal login information, you will be able to see regular photos and updates on your sponsored child, and manage your credit card and personal information.
Can I visit my sponsored child?

Yes! Several short-term teams visit each year. We would be glad to work with your group to arrange a visit, or alternatively, we offer two times a year that individuals may visit.

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