There are currently 800 orphanages in Uganda. This represents an increase of over 230 percent since 1990, and 50,000 children growing up without the love and support of a family.
Child’s i Foundation, set up by Lucy Buck in 2009, is on a mission to create families for these orphans. “As many as 80 percent of children growing up in orphanages have families out there somewhere, and we have a waiting list of parents looking to adopt. It’s far better for the well-being of the child to be placed with a family than to stay in care,” explains Buck.
With Salesforce underpinning its social care agenda, Child’s i is placing hundreds of children in secure, loving homes. “We’ve worked with Salesforce volunteers to develop a social care case management system in Salesforce that enables us to match children to appropriate families.”
Finding new homes for children is just the beginning. With Sales Cloud, the organization can track each child’s progress for three years, ensuring they’re happy, healthy and thriving in their new family. “Keeping good records is vital for us to ensure the child’s ongoing wellbeing. With Salesforce we know the data is secure, accessible and up-to-date,” says Buck.
The solution also helps improve operational efficiency for the charity, As Kirsty Stephenson, Head of Digital Strategy and Community Development at Child’s i explains, “The dashboard facility gives us a visual representation of our data, enabling more effective reporting and helping us to make informed decisions.”
With all charities relying on support from donors, bridging the gap between putting pennies in a bucket and the reality of the cause can be challenging. “Transparency is one of our core values. We wanted to build a community for our volunteers and supporters,” adds Stephenson.
Now with Salesforce Chatter, social workers can upload photos and updates in real time, connecting with their colleagues and with donors on the Chatter network.
“Seeing a photo of a baby in the arms of a new mother can turn a bad day into a great one. It gives us the motivation to keep doing what we’re doing,” says Buck. “But Chatter has also allowed us to tap into skills and resources amongst our supporters. For example, we recently needed help designing a brochure, and put a request for help out on Chatter. Through people volunteering their time, we were able to produce a great piece of work at minimal cost.”
Next, Child’s i plans to take advantage of the Salesforce Mobile App to support a remote social worker who will be based in west Uganda. This will enable the organization to do more home visits and trace families more effectively in the region without running up mileage and costs.
Child’s i is making a big difference, but it’s only a small organization with a 52-strong team in Uganda and two people responsible for fundraising based in the UK. To tackle the thousands of children growing up in orphanages in Uganda, Buck wants to share her methodologies across the country. “We are looking to train 20 care homes with our social care approach,” she says. “One of our primary goals is to develop a curriculum for social workers, which will be supported by the Salesforce case management system.”
This system will help to establish social care processes in Uganda, and manage assessments and risks, thereby improving the standard of care for more than 1,000 children in orphanages while increasing their chances of finding a stable family.
“We’re working against the clock,” explains Buck. “Research suggests a child can be irreparably damaged if they have to spend more than six months in care. Orphanages encourage a competitive environment where these children feel they have to beg for love. We are passionate about putting a stop to this, and Salesforce is helping us at every step of the way.”