During a visit to the East African country of Uganda in 2004, we discovered an urgent need to help educate children left orphaned by a combination of an ongoing war and the AIDS epidemic. We found that the sheer number of orphans overwhelmed the educational system of Uganda, and many children were unable to attend any type of school. Those who did attend school found themselves in little more than wooden shacks with no supplies, undereducated teachers, and the children suffering from illness and malnutrition.
In 2006, working together with other organizations, we began to work with a school that was devoted to helping these orphans. The school consisted of several unfinished buildings and a few wooden sheds accommodating up to four hundred children. Most of the children at the school were ill and the school had a child death rate of up to forty children a year. Between 2007 and 2009, we started to help upgrade the school and provide food and medicine for the children. They became healthy and the child death rate dropped nearly to zero.
During this time we began to identify pre-school children that had no hope of receiving an education in this system. We then identified and recruited sponsors in the United States for ten of these children. We then separated them into their own classroom and hired our own teacher. This group of children was the beginning of our organization and we called it Student Adoption Network Development.
In 2010 we incorporated as Student Adoption Network Development Foundation, a non-profit, IRS 501(3)c public charity, calling it SAND Foundation.
We moved our ten children out of the school they were originally attending to an established school with excellent facilities. Since then we have added six more children for a total of sixteen in the program today.
In 2011, we recognized the need to house our children, as the environment they live in is often unsafe, leaving them vulnerable to disease and abuse. So we began to build an orphanage, which although unfinished, already houses seven of the children. We are working toward housing all the SAND children one day.