Providing housing to the BACHO orphans affected by storm and flooding (November 2022) – Urgent appeal for support

Our 2022 end-of-year fundraising campaign with matching gifts for the boys dormitory has reached its goal! Now we are raising funds for the girls dormitory.

Akiikih (center) with the children who recently lost their homes.

Many many thanks for everyone who has supported and keeps supporting these programs!


From October 19 through November 16, 2022, three cycles of heavy storms came from over Lake Edward and caused a lot of havoc at Rwenshama. Several huts collapsed due to the heavy wind. To make matters worse, the heavy rain made the river swell, and heavy flooding entered the lower parts of the village in the middle of the night. Akiikih and his team had to rescue some children. Akiikih (founder of BACHO) took 11 of the children to his own small home to provide them a place to sleep. Another 6 children are sleeping temporarily at a home that is currently still under construction and was meant to be for another family (and is at a higher elevation).

A lot of the huts got irreversible damage. While some of them already collapsed, others at the verge of collapsing. Even if the walls of the hut weren’t damaged, many of the children lost all their personal belongings, such as clothing, school materials, food materials, as they were swept away by the water or damaged irreversibly.

The few public toilets in the village also had severe damage. The flooding is causing now major contamination of the water with urine and feces, with high risk for cholera and other diseases.

We are appealing to your generosity to help this community, which has a lot of orphans and children living with HIV.

We decided to approach the challenges in 2 phases:

Phase 1:  Immediate supplies (This has been completed thanks to the generosity of our donors).

  • Our first needs were to give the children proper clothing, shoes, and other personal items (simple bedding materials etc). To help the children most severely affected with personal items, we estimate approximately $100 per child, so that would be $1,700 for 17 children. Thanks to a fundraising campaign on social media, this goal has been met!

Phase 2: Boys dormitory + community toilets (This has been completed thanks to the generosity of our donors).

  • Phase 2 focused on housing for the orphans:
    • Dormitory. Earlier this year, thanks a generous donor, BACHO was able to purchase the headquarters it was previously renting; when the owner suddenly died, the family wanted to sell it. This infrastructure is fortunately also at a higher elevation in the village and thus, not affected by the recent floods. These headquarters are a half-finished tourist lodge with only a few rooms that were completed. However, one large room in the lodge, which was supposed to be like a meeting room or dining hall, was unfinished, as it had dirt floor, unfinished walls and no windows or doors. We decided it would make sense to convert this room into a dormitory, so that many of the orphans who lost their hut can sleep there. The cost for this construction was $3,500.
    • Furniture. The dormitory needs furniture. The total cost for 10 sets of bunk beds, tables and chairs is $2,000.
    • In December 2022, the dormitory was completed! As the capacity was limited, we had to make the hard decision and give priority to the boys to occupy this new dormitory. Scroll below to see pictures and clips of the boys dormitory.
  • Toilets: We needed to build toilets for the community. The price for an ecological sanitation latrine (which has both a toilet and an adjacent washing room) is $2,000 per unit. We built 3 units for the village, for a total cost of $,6000.

Phase 3: Girls dormitory + toilets/washrooms for boys dormitory (fundraising in progress).

  • Girls Dormitory: Currently 16  girls are still staying with Akiikih and his family in their small hut. We want to build a girls dormitory on the same property that currently has the boys dormitory. This  is also at high enough elevation to be safe from flooding. The estimate for this, including furniture, is $50,000.
Akiikih with the girls currently living at his home.
  • We also want to build a proper toilet facility and washroom structure that would accommodate both dormiitories. The total estimate for this is $10,000.
Draft of design of girls dormitory

As the amount we need to raise is large, we will do our fundraising in steps, with $5,000 at a time. The donation form below lists a target of $16,500 ($11,500 for phase 2, and $5,000 towards phase 3). But we hope we can soon reach and exceed this towards the overall goal of $60,000 that is needed for phase 3. 

Any donation, of any amount, will be much appreciated.
You can make an online donation using the form below, or for other ways of making a contribution, go to our donation page.

Despite the extreme hardship, Akiikih does his best to hide the tears by giving the children hope by keeping them busy with music and arts.
The exterior of the room that has become the boys dormitory


Construction work in full progress to make the boys dormitory room
The completed  boys dormitory

The gallery below shows the boys currently living at the boys dormitory (click on individual picture to see an enlarged version)

The community toilets that have also adjacent washing room(click on individual pics for enlarged version)

Here you can see the aftermath of the storm. Click on individual pictures to see enlarged versions. Please scroll further down to see some videos, including testimonials by some of the kids.

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