Years in the Field
Humanity First has now been caring for humanity for a quarter of a century.
That’s 25 years of rushing to the aid of communities ravaged by wars, earthquakes, hurricanes and droughts around the world. 25 years of bringing water to the thirsty, medicine to the sick and education and training to those lacking opportunity. And 25 years enabling our volunteers and donors to do the most good, while empowering the communities we serve to grow and prosper.
In that time, we’ve grown from a small, UK-based disaster relief organization to an international organization with over 60 national chapters and over 3,000 members, helping out wherever there is a need for aid around the world.
To celebrate our accomplishments and the many volunteers and donors who made them possible, here’s the story of our first 25 years in the field.
Humanity First: a Tradition of Selfless Service
Humanity First first took shape in 1994, and was officially founded in 1995, under the guidance of Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad, the fourth Khalifa of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. Mirza Tahir Ahmad envisioned an organization where volunteers and donors from all religions, races and creeds could serve those in need — not out of personal interest, but out of duty to put the good of humanity ahead of personal interests and desires
In 1995, the community made that vision a reality, incorporating Humanity First as a non-profit the UK. In the first 5 years, we served primarily disaster relief, from helping the victims of ethnic cleansing in the Balkans, to aiding the community of Izmit, Turkey after a devastating earthquake in 1999.
Disaster relief has remained a major focus of Humanity First. However, by the end of the 1990s we saw that it wasn’t enough. In 2001, we established our first vocational training schools in Burkina Faso and Gambia, while continuing to address disasters such as the Liberian civil war and open new chapters around the world.
Humanity First Uganda — a Legacy of Service
The story of Humanity First Uganda follows the story of the organization as a whole. Founded in 2007 in the same spirit of selfless service, we were quickly called upon to address humanitarian disasters. In 2007 alone, we were called on to aid the victims of flooding in Soroti, devastating floods that displaced nearly 10,000 in eastern part of Uganda.
However, even in the midst of those crises, we were working with the global Humanity First community to grow beyond disaster relief and provide long-term prosperity to underserved communities. With our partners, Humanity First Uganda began Information Technology Training Institute in Budaka, training centers and schools in earnest, as well as fixing water pumps and providing other desperately needed infrastructure upgrades. Thanks to the dedication of our members, those projects have continued to grow and flourish, helping millions around the the country.
The Future of Humanity First
In many ways, the challenges the world faces are even more daunting than they were 25 years ago. Progress against poverty has stalled in many regions, and climate change and ballooning inequality are worsening the effects of poverty and disaster.
But there is hope too. We’ve had the privilege of bringing together thousands of volunteers and donors from all backgrounds, who have inspired us with their energy and passion, and brought health, education and greater prosperity to underserved communities around the world.
We know we’ve made a difference. And with your help, we know Humanity First can do even more over the next 25 years.
All humanitarian nonprofits face the same basic challenge: how do we do as much good as possible with the resources we have available?
There are always more people in need, and promising projects that depend on stretching a limited budget as far as possible.
Unfortunately, many organizations aren’t up to the task. As they grow, nonprofits can become bloated and inefficient, dedicating an ever larger share of donations towards staffing, fundraising campaigns and other tasks that don’t help those in heed.
Humanity First Uganda is different. Our organization is almost entirely volunteer run, with approximately 90% of donations going directly to funding disaster relief and development programs around the world.
That enables us to do more for poor communities around the world, from caring for hurricane victims, to building schools and hospitals. Here’s what we’ve accomplished so far.
Serving Humanity — By the Numbers
Humanity First is a group of independent national charities linked by a common vision of serving humanity. From a single UK group formed in 1995, we’ve grown into a worldwide network of over 62 national groups, with thousands of volunteers and donors, spread across 6 continents.
This structure has enabled Humanity First to work effectively anywhere help is required. With volunteers on the ground nearly everywhere, we can locate underserved communities, connect quickly with disaster relief organizations, and get people the help they need. As a result, we’ve been able to make a huge impact, helping 4.5 million people around the world.
Knowledge for Life
Humanity First Uganda runs schools and vocational training programs in underserved communities around the country. Our Knowledge for Life initiative has supported a total of 12 primary schools. An additional 2 vocational training Institutes teach a huge range of skills from sewing, to IT, to automotive repair. In total, our programmes have served over 6,100 students and young adults in since its inception 2007.
Disaster relief remains a core part of Humanity First Uganda’s mission, we have provided relief for 5 disasters in the Uganda. All told, we provided crucial aid like food, medicine and Non Food Items to over 15,000 in the counntry.
Water for Life
Safe drinking water is a fundamental right, but to many people across the world, that right is still denied. In many water-stressed regions of the country, villagers can’t afford to fix pumps when they wear out, leaving them without a nearby source of clean water. In 2019, Humanity First Uganda provided over 30 villages with clean water, by rebuilding 75 hand pumps in east and central region of the country. In total, we restored sources of clean drinking water to more than 40,000 people.
We also funded 15 new wells in Budaka, Butebo, Pallisa and Kibuku, providing a new safe water source for thousands more.
Humanity First Uganda works to ensure all people receive the medical care they need. In 2020, our Global Health programme, and Gift of Sight helped 27,000 people in poor and underserved communities across the country. Organized Free Medical camps around-the-clock health center in Mbale, provided free, high-quality care to communities that previously had no professionally-staffed healthcare available. Our communities also run mobile health centers to treat isolated communities, disaster victims and others who lack medical services.
Humanity First Uganda has been working towards a hunger-free Uganda,
Doing the Most Good Around the Country
We’re proud of what we’ve accomplished, but there’s still a lot to do. Billions of people worldwide suffer from poverty, hunger and thirst, and lack of healthcare, education and opportunity.
With your help, we can build a more just, prosperous tomorrow for all humanity.
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