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Orphan Care Bases

Orphan Care Bases

We often advise people who set out to start an orphanage not to focus on starting an orphanage. Instead, we advise them to focus on what the orphans’ needs are. Sometimes, it may mean starting an orphanage. At other times, it may mean starting orphan bases.An orphan base is a place from which to work and serve orphans in the surrounding areas. We can work from there to facilitate family-based care, community development, provide tutoring, medical care, some meals, etc. If the needs are great, then an orphanage can arise from there. It’s important to let the true needs of the children determine the care we give them. Starting an orphanage immediately without a thorough understanding of the needs of the community is not a smart idea. And these needs change frequently. So flexibility is key.

With the orphan base model, we reduce the temptation of rushing to institutionalize orphans simply because we want people to know we have a big orphanage. We all have that tendency to consciously and unconsciously make something bigger so people can see that our thing is working.It's important to let the true needs of the children determine the care we give them. Click To Tweet

The word “orphanage” tells people that we have orphans in a building somewhere. But that may not be the best way to serve orphans in that area. It may be the best way to serve children for one year, but not for the next year, since things change. It may be the best way to serve one orphan but not another. If we focus on starting an orphan base from which we serve orphans, it reminds us to focus on the needs of the orphans and the best way to meet them.

Many times, the best way to serve orphans is not an orphanage. For example, Shaping Destiny has created a “foster care” program in Cameroon (Africa) where none existed. They match orphans to live with local Christian families in their culture that they have partnered with through local churches and taught the importance of orphan care. For some of them who need help, they provide help to the orphan at a small fraction of the cost of keeping that child in an orphanage. It is good for the orphan in many ways. The child grows in a loving home with a mother and father and gets more attention than they can ever get in the orphanage. Also, it’s much cheaper than an orphanage so they can care for more children. It empowers the local people to serve orphans and be blessed by doing it.

Truth is that the idea of orphanage can close up the mind to these creative solutions. And yes, they also have an “orphanage” that functions as a transition home in Cameroon where they take ill, malnourished children so that they can be taken care of for some time before hopefully being reunited with their biological family or placed with a foster family, if necessary. starting an orphanage is great if done well, at the right time, and for the right purposes.

Starting an orphanage is great if done well, at the right time, and for the right purposes.

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  1. Thanks for all the information. I would like some training on orphan care.

  2. I am a married person who is willing to start this project.

  3. I’ eager t help homeless child as well. I’m happy little to see those kids playing around. I love them. I plan to put an orphanage of my own. It will in Philippines my home country. One way of saving life, helping them to mold their future

  4. Any willing person we join hands together an start a home rather door to door orphanage outreach programme because i ve been doing this for the past 5years dealing with not only orphans but also the physical, mental, deaf( sign language use) to let them feel the presence of God in their life since majority cant understand why they r underprevillaged… plz le me know so as we start focusing together.. i ve means of transport that can get us off as currently the struggle continues…
    God bless you so much as you prepare communicating with me..

    • Hi Lucas where are you based? I am interested but based in Kempton park.

    • am in Ghana and am willing to start an orphanage too can we do something together tobhelp these poor and vulnerable people around us

  5. I’m 24 years old I’m married I have passed my matric in 2010 its always been my dream to have an orphanage home as I’m always helping children who are in need I’m a born again christian can you please help with the requirements

  6. I think the idea of a foster care system of sorts is a great way to serve orphans and help equip and empower the locals to care for their own children! God bless the work you’re doing! 🙂

  7. I have been reading and searching for more information on starting orphanages, registering them, and much more on needy and vulnerable children. Am born again Kenyan lady and since I was a young girl, I have felt that my calling is to serve the disadvantaged. I had a painful experience when I was sexually molested severally from childhood up to when I was a teenage by people who should have protected me. God saved me and delivered me from my past and gave me a fresh start, I forgave these people and thank God for who He has made me.

    Am married and my husband is a teacher, and also minister to students and other people. We have a son, and also are currently taking care of a 2 years old boy who has gone through so much pain previously. He is HIV+ and his widowed mother too. The story is long but we are glad that the mother accepted Jesus as her saviour and is now recovering from her bad condition and we are monitoring her and will reunite her with the child after 6 months if she changes.

    In this part of Kenya, and in the town we are living to be specific, Molo, there has been a rise in the number of orphans due to HIV, and disasters which have hit the area previously. The number of the needy children and families continue to grow which breaks our hearts. We have been praying since we have a strong desire to reach out and empower this community(which I have grown in – my husband is from a different part of the country). We believe that if we touch and change the lives of these children, by loving, caring, feeding, educating, clothing, and above all sharing God’s love through His Word to them, they will be agents of change in this very community. We desire to see what God has purposed for these children come to be, and to see these children grow in an environment in which they are loved and accepted.

    We have worked with NGO’s working with orphaned and vulnerable children, my husband as a teacher and counsellor, and I as a social worker and administrator. We sense God’s call to start a programme and rescue the orphaned and vulnerable children in this area We have already started small by getting clothes and shoes from family and close friends and distributing them where there is need.

    We however, know that God provides for his children in the means He himself designs. We are trusting that He will send to us someone who will support us in establishing this child development programme, since we have no contacts of people who are interested. Please help and advice us.

    Thank you for the advice you give us.
    God bless you.

    • Hello Winnie,
      Thank you for sharing some of your story with us; you and your husband are doing great things for the Kingdom! It is awesome that you are being obedient to the Lords calling for your life, I hope that He continues to bless you as you continue to serve. It sounds like the Lord has great plans to use your family to help empower the community to do great things, not to mention The Lord has educated both you and your husband in subjects that will be extremely beneficial in caring for these children. I would suggest to you to continue to seek out knowledge on the best way to care for the disadvantaged; you will find a lot of useful information on this site alone, but also be seeking out other sites that will help inform you. Be telling everyone of the passion the Lord has laid on your heart to care for these kids, and be obedient in prayer and as you said you can expect The Lord to provide for these children. You will be able to do more with more people so be intentional in building relationships within the community and even surrounding ones so that you will have more ideas and more knowledge to consider and act upon. Continue to seek God’s guidance and He will provide you with prayer and financial supporters! Thank you again for sharing Winnie! It is so good to know when people are living out their calling!

      • Amen, and thank you very much Danielle

    • Thanks for your encouraging post. I believe it’s up to us to change the world around us. I’m Kenyan too and I live in a supposedly slum area where people look poor but really are not. The major issue is identifying who really is in need. Men here are given to drunkenness and their children go barefoot and wear tattered clothing. But I found out most of them actually live in their own homes..albeit mud homes. And here I am, trying to help when I cannot even afford to pay my rent! How can one identify a truly needy case from someone coming from just an irresponsible home? Another thing that pains me is the crippled I see in towns who beg. Most of them have ‘comfortable’ (by african standards) relatives. Yet, none is getting them off the streets. Should we work more on educating the community to help their own..what I call ‘social responsibility’. What can I do?

      God bless you all.

  8. Comment Iam pr Bahandagana in uganda, on 25 /12/2013.It is very important to be trained before starting an orphanage.Ihave aproject named holistic rehabilitation and skills development centre but Iask you to help me impliment this project,and also give me more advice.Iam ready to take your advice and any possible assistance.

    • Dear Nam*pr, I would suggest to you that you just take time to look around this website at the many articles that have been posted and learn from others past experience in orphan care. God bless!

  9. Hey, I’m Boikanyo M age 18, I really really need to build an orphanage home in Pretoria Soshanguve. It would really mean a lot to my community and most children in this area. I really need help an partners to construct this. If u have any advice or suggestion please email me: mphagoboikanyo@gmail.com.

    • Hello Boikanyo, thank you for sharing this need in Pretoria. I pray that God will provide you with supporters and that you do everything in your power to gain knowledge in orphan care so that you can serve children to the best of your ability with the helping hand of God.

  10. I want to open an orphanage between Bisho or Debenek, between King Williams Town and Alice. I am a bread winner at my home, it kills me to see kids as young as 6 – 10 yrs sleeping on an empty stomach in such a way that as I speak I make monthly groceries for my family + (7 added kids kids who were staying with their grandmother but unfortunately she passed on) . We have added them to my family as in today, they go to school, I buy them school uniform etc. More kids do need this and I cannot afford to care for all of them hence I need tips on how can I start an orphanage centre. There is an old BIBLE SCHOOL School which is on the way to Alice which I was thinking of using it as premises. Please help

    • Hello Bonnie,
      The best thing to do before starting an orphanage would be to completely read over this website. We also suggest that you receive some sort of training either through us at Glory Bible College or through another organization. That way you will acquire the skills and information needed to run and effective orphanage to serve the kingdom. God Bless!

  11. I am glad to have stumbled over this website.
    Thank you Dr Ken for all the great and very useful advice, I read.
    I and a friend of mine have this wonderful dream of an orphanage, but it’s so much to take in and to actually study before one can take that leap.
    But after reading about the orphan bases I am having an even more clear picture of what we can begin with and later on expand onto greater things.

    To provide help that the orphans or less fortunate children and their families need is such a great way to start.
    Like you wrote if one can help with foster homes but help out with the necessary means to survive is a wonderful idea.

    I am going to discuss with my friend and ask her read this article and I can only hope she’ll see and understand it as I have truly understood it.

    Best regards
    /Robinah Kaggwa, Sweden

  12. I am prayerfully considering starting a unique orphanage program here in Idaho. It would provide for both children who are true orphans as well as”social” orphans along with providing for elderly in need of a home. I have been a teacher for 36 years, been a licensed foster parent for both a faith based agency and the state of Idaho for 13 foster children, birth -teens. I have adopted 2 special needs children who are now adults. I have served as a foreign missionary in Honduras for 5 years where I taught and worked in 3 different orphanages. Our foster care system is rather broken and I learned a great deal during my time in Honduras about quality care for orphaned children which I believe could be applied to an orphanage here in the USA. I also observed how much children benefit from a loving relationship with elders both in Honduras and here during my many years of teaching young children and partnering my students with residents of a retirement/assisted living center.Do you have ant suggestions, ideas you could share with me?I have found a building which would be a good fit for this type of ministry. I have a number of possible staff member in mind who share this vision as well as being highly educated and trained as educators, social workers, medical personnel.administrators and all are committed Christians. Funding for this ministry is in the works. I ask for you prayers as moves to make a difference in the lives of children and elderly here.

    • Hello Karen,
      This sounds like an amazing opportunity and dream! We will certainly be praying for you as God takes you along this wonderful adventure.

    • Karen,
      I too realize that our foster system is broken. I would like to offer a structured foster home (orphanage) here in KY.
      Please advice of any success you have had in your endeavor.

    • Hello Keren,

      Thanks for sure wonderful work of caring for the orphan . I pray that God should always bless you and your family. Am a Gamba Jane S. aged 40yrs. i stay in Uganda . I have been looking after orphans since i was 27yrs and My Husband Godfrey. we live in Uganda. so we want to set up the orphanage home and continue helping the needy children.

      Any assistance is highly aprectiated.


  13. I thank you very much for the information on orphans. I have a primary school and have always felt I should integrate orphans in the school but I get caught up by lack of resources to provide for their scholastic and personal needs. I therefore abandon the program and have always hoped funds would one day be available but nothing has been forthcoming. How do you advice/help me overcome these haunting challenge I am faced with? There are many orphans in our community as a result of HIV/AIDS.
    I will appreciate your guidance or support.

  14. Hi DR. Ken I thank you so very much for all these information I myself is on the journey I have worked with children for over 7 years they are all I live for now it is time for me to give back to my country I want to open an orphanage but with no idea how to start but I know from reading all you have written I will find a way thank you
    Ps if I could have the last article on the first step I would gladly appreciate it thanks

  15. God richly bless you Dr Ken,your articles are such a blessing to me.Keep on with the good work and remember;your labour of love is never in vain.

  16. Good Day

    I would like to know how to start an orphanage home, I went to register for it and they refuse because I don’t have children yet and I wanted to operate from my home. They told me I should first find a place to place the kids and come back. At the moment there are a lot of kids who need love and care out there some are street kids my passion is to help especially those who lost their parents. Please help me.

  17. i have this calling of starting an orphanage, but i don’t know where to start from.

  18. I used 2 take care of my neighbours kids so since den I have a love of children,I wsh 1 day I can stay wth dem & give dem d lve dat dey derseve ,its painful when u c child gng 2 shool no shoes no jersy wth a shorprite bag dat it hurt m realy,

  19. I’m having a calling to take care of orphans hope I wil learn more from ideas shared

  20. i have learn ‘t a lot from this article..thank you..i have had this calling for the longest time i know and want to implement it..i have identified a home,a few kids but he problem is i don’t have funds..please advice on how to get sponsors..

  21. My name is Gladys.i want to start. Orphanage but I want go of a training befor start.please can u help me?

  22. I have got quite very useful information which is of help to me in my current project.

  23. I av started an orphan bases care with two orphans in my community but want to do more as in help more children in d area of tutoring medicals clothing and even meals but my resources is not much now owing to the fact dat am still in school training for task dat God has given me (an orphanage) i need to no how i can raise more fund and also open a website as d pple i contacted for d wsite charge what i cant afford

  24. This is incredible and literally an answered prayer! I have really enjoyed receiving the information from this website! I really like the idea of bases…I am currently trying to raise money to begin an orphanage in Durban, South Africa! I have no idea all the steps behind starting and running an orphanage, but I do know that God has called me back to South Africa and wants to use me in changing the lives of his precious children! Since I don’t really have any idea to why God has laid this on my heart many years ago I am just in constant prayer and he has continuously given me answers and have brought so many people in my life that have given me ideas and just wise words of encouragement! I could not be more excited to be apart of Gods master plan and am so thankful to have come across this website! I will be checking it daily so that I can further my knowledge so that I can one day be serving in an orphanage every day and doing what is best for these kids that I pray for everyday! I love all of the ideas and encouragement! Thank you!

  25. I love children and adults as well. Presently I am looking after my ailing mother who is suffering from dementia. I know how much care I am giving her with the help of another two ladies. Whenever I do her work, I always remember all those who are around the world who are suffering without help or care. There isn’t a person to wipe their tears, who don’t have proper clothing and food. No proper medication. I have a heart for the lost, who are perishing without Christ. Also children and adults who need a home and help with a lot of love and care. My husband and I are ever willing to open an orphanage if you are able to help us to open one. Thanks!!!!

    • Hello CHRYSHANTHI,
      Thank you for the great work you are doing to take care of your ailing mother. What you are doing is amazing. I can definitely help you to start an orphanage. However, my advise is that you don’t do it alone since you already have quite a bit to deal with. I can find you other people who have been trained to care for orphans so that you can partner with them and start an orphan care base together. It’s best to work in teams and care for orphans. Another advantage in doing it with others who have been trained is that you don’t have to go through training yourself before you do it. You may get training later. Training is very crucial in orphan care.
      If you want to start working on it, you can call the Shaping Destiny Movement at 1-855-2-ORPHAN and talk to someone who can get the process started for you.

  26. my wife and self are taking care of O V Cs and feel to go tep further and buld a villge sort of for them. but non of us has studied social work or anything in that line but feel called for that. we do not have resources enough what can we do .we live in rural part of zimbabwe close to a growth point

    • Hello S S,
      Thank God for your great heart for orphans. My recommendation is that you take training prior to starting. Money is important but all the money in the world cannot give good quality care to a child except through well trained staff.

  27. it has always been my passion to see people smile especialy children like me.i am 16yrs,am i too young to start an orphanage home.meanwhile it something i really want to do no matter the circumstances

    • Great heart Grace. Let us know when you want to start the orphanage. The Shaping Destiny Movement can help you do so…

  28. I have been searching for information about starting an orphanage..this article gave me a lot to think about in my vision..

    • Hello Kesha,
      We are glad we could help. We appreciate you leaving this comment. If you learn some new stuff that you think may help others, please come back and share on the blog so others can benefit.

      • hi i realy wnt to open an orphanage because is been my passion of saving soul which are this children in my community who realy needs love n a home bt i dnt no hw to start

        • Hello Elizabeth,
          Thanks for sharing your desire with us. Serving orphans is an amazing thing to do. Many people have been contacting us and asking what the first steps are in starting. I plan to answer that question thoroughly in the next week in a blog post I will write. To make sure you will receive that post, please enter your email address on the right side of the page and subscribe to have our blog posts sent to your email directly. If not, just come back in a week or two and check on that post. Thanks again for the opportunity to serve you!