Raleigh woman to teach Ugandan children

Posted December 7, 2010 3:12 p.m. EST
Updated December 8, 2010 8:54 p.m. EST

— A Raleigh-based youth entrepreneurship program will be helping to teach children in Uganda this month.

Valerie Fields founded the Millionaires in Training program, a local nonprofit, to teach young people the basics of business.

Fields traveled to Uganda in June with the with the Wake Forest group Embrace Uganda. They brought food, toiletries and medical care to remote villages.

“Uganda is literally one of the poorest regions on the planet,” Fields said.

Fields said she saw children living in mud-and-stick huts and attending school under a mango tree.

“It’s something that makes you rethink your priorities,” Field said.

A pastor in Uganda heard about Fields’ program and wanted her to host youth conferences in the Kumi and Kaihura regions from Dec. 29 through Jan. 5.

“We’ll have an opportunity to meet and to connect and teach more than 1,000 children over a two-week period,” Fields said.

Fields is making the trip alone, but she is taking along boxes donated clothing and shoes.

“These children have literally one or two sets of clothing, so it's important that we meet some of the most basic needs,” she said.

Fields is also taking along books because, she said, the gift of literacy can help meet another basic need in Uganda.

“It’s easy to sit back and do nothing, or you can step and do something. This is just our way to step up and do something,” she said.

Fields said her expenses for the trip are covered, but her group needs $5,000 to accommodate the children she expects to teach in Uganda. So far, she has raised $2,000.