About LITNET! in Uganda
 
 

Overview

Our involvement with Uganda Christian Education began in 1987; since that time, we have discovered several opportunities for service in this region. Small Christian schools, particularly those in rural areas, are plagued with a lack of teaching resources and a dearth of trained teachers. Book famine is pervasive, yet teachers, parents, and churches display resourcefulness and an eager desire to improve education standards; they share the need for encouragement, networking, and expertise.

Operational Objectives

* LitNet! develops curriculum and teaching materials which promote literacy in English.
* LitNet! organizes and implements "On-site" training for indigenous Christian school administrators and teachers in developing nations. This training promotes Christian education and literacy, particularly in rural communities.
* LitNet! provides tactical support and resources for the development of faith-based, educational, and non-profit organizations.


As a result of collaboration with East African nationals, LitNet! piloted an early literacy curriculum in 2002. This curriculum (called School in a Briefcase) teaches primary-aged students in East Africa how to read and write in English. School in a Briefcase addresses the severe shortages of books and teaching materials found in many rural East African Christian schools and provides systematic guidelines for the teachers using it. The curriculum is culturally relevant, published in Uganda, and its consumable materials are photocopy-reproducible. School in a Briefcase is distributed in conjunction with three days of teacher training. The cost of each Briefcase is subsidized by ministry donations.  

 

 

Humble Beginnings
The work of LitNet! began long before its incorporation.

Our financial commitment set down its roots in 1987, when we started sending support funds and recycled Christian Education materials to Uganda. We collected used student workbooks from Christian schools in the U.S., mailed these materials to Uganda, and began conducting teacher training seminars there in 1994.

Four years later, African teachers began to express the need for quality, culturally relevant teaching materials. Donations created a support base that allowed us to spend two years in Uganda writing and illustrating phase one of the School in a Briefcase curriculum. We trained teacher trainers, and began laying plans for income-generating projects that could sustain the work in East Africa. Upon returning to the U.S., we began the process of incorporating as a nonprofit organization called LitNet!

 

 

Since its inception, LitNet! (the Literacy Network) has sought to live up to its motto “touching children and their families for Christ through literacy”. We have engaged in partnering with others who share the belief that empowerment comes with literacy. We also believe that true freedom comes with reading the Word of God and knowing Christ; literacy plays a vital role in that process. Our simple goal in this partnership is to connect the need with the supply.

The Need…

Our twenty-year connection with Christian churches, schools, and teachers in East Africa has revealed great needs:

* large populations of children, particularly in rural areas, unable to afford the cost of schooling
* overcrowded government schools
* struggling Christian schools, particularly in rural areas
* pastors and untrained teachers who desire to teach more effectively
* chronically high rates of teacher turn-over
* a pervasive lack of books and teaching materials
* a pervasive lack of financial resources among parents, teachers, schools, and churches
* book famine
* lack of an established reading culture


Uganda has one of the youngest populations in the world. Population estimates indicate that nearly 50% of Uganda's 36 million people are 0-14 years of age. The median age is 15.5 years. Uganda also remains one of the poorest countries in the world, with 31% of the population living below the poverty line. Uganda has an annual per capita GDP (gross domestic product) of around $1,500. US.

Education is the key to breaking the cycle of poverty.  


 

The Supply…

The nature of our work in the teaching profession, and our growing network of missions-minded churches and individuals have revealed the potential supply:

* God’s promises to provide for our every need
* our own experience, training, and abilities in the areas of writing, drawing, teaching, and administration
* our own desire to encourage, instruct, and lead the way toward creative solutions to educational challenges
* a growing number of Ugandan teachers willing to share knowledge with their colleagues
* caring churches, families, and individuals ready to share their financial resources
* educators and other Christians willing to travel and share their expertise
* teachers and schoolchildren in the U.S. eager to help needy classrooms abroad


LitNet! has made a decision to focus training efforts on teachers. This, we feel, is a more efficient and effective way to reach more children. As teachers are equipped and materials are field-tested, we create a growing pool of indigenous teacher trainers from which we can draw. Our dream is to expand the number of training and distribution centers in strategic regions of Uganda.

 

 

 

The Network…

We began with what was in our hands: what we had and what we knew.

As time passed, friends, family, and churches joined us. The network expanded, and we were able to connect more supply to the seemingly endless need. Requests for School in a Briefcase training seminars continue to pour in. We are responding to the call for a Christian curriculum that meets Uganda government standards for Primary Schools.


LITNET! New Developments in Uganda

Annet Mugisha and her associates continue to present School in a Briefcase and Sunday School teacher training seminars twice per month, on the average. The LitNet! team also visits classrooms, conducts follow-up observation and training, and provides consultation for School in a Briefcase trained teachers.

 

 

Annet and her husband have opened Rainbow House, a school and daycare center on the outskirts of Kampala (their home and Uganda’s capital city). Annet and her teaching team have implemented the use LitNet! teaching materials and practices. The school supplies supplementary income for the Mugisha family, and provides

  • a “lab” where new curricula is implemented
  • a training center for rural teachers
  • a meeting area where teacher-training seminars are conducted
  • an office and storage area for LitNet! teaching materials
  • a bookshop offering Christian literature and teaching materials

 

 

The Mugishas have formed their own NGO (Non Government Organization), LitNet! Uganda, in Uganda; this non profit organization works in partnership with LitNet! to reach the goals outlined here.

*LitNet! develops curriculum and teaching materials which promote literacy in English.
*LitNet! organizes and implements “on site” training for indigenous Christian school administrators and teachers in developing nations. This training promotes Christian Education and literacy, particularly in rural communities.
*LitNet! provides tactical support and resources for the development of faith-based, educational, and non-profit organizations.

 

YOU CAN HELP

  • Pray for the continued, effective growth of this ministry, and for an extension of the network, especially in the war-torn North of Uganda.
  • Pray for Annie, Bibian, Juliet, Cathy, and their associates as they work on the front lines; pray for open doors and for their health and safety.
  • Sponsor the production of a School in a Briefcase for a school in need, at a cost of $50 per briefcase
  • Make a contribution that will enable us to reach more schools, and continue the work that has begun.
  • Commit to a monthly donation, and receive our monthly newsletter to remain abreast of plans and accomplishments.

 

..Thank you

Back to Information