Mum of 13 to travel to Uganda with daughter to meet sponsored child

Mum of 13 to travel to Uganda with daughter to meet sponsored child

Rochester Mum of 13, 42-year-old Tania Sullivan is preparing to travel to Uganda at the start of June. Tania and her 17-year-old daughter, Caitlin will meet the child they support, Opisia Doreen, 16, through child development charity, Compassion UK.

Compassion sponsors Tania and Caitlin hold up photo of sponsored child

During their trip, Tania’s husband Mike will be looking after the remaining children at home in Hoo; Harry 14, Eddie 12, Sid 11, Paddy 10, Ollie 8, Joseph 6, Libby and Anna 5, Isobel 4 and Tim 3. The two older children, Ben 24, Stephanie, 23, have left home.

Opisia lives near Jinja, eastern Uganda in a hillside community where typical houses are constructed of cement floors, brick walls and tin rooves. Most adults in Opisia’s neighbourhood are unemployed but some work as subsistence farmers and earn the equivalent of £6 per month.

The Sullivan’s sponsorship enables Opisia to be part of her local Compassion project where she receives nutritious meals, emotional support, medical attention and the chance to go to school.

“Opisia has always been so grateful for our support. In her first letter, she asked us, “When are you coming to visit me?” so it’ll be good to meet her finally,” shares Tania. “I think it might be quite an emotional trip, she’s been through so much in her young life and she always thanks us for being there for her. I suppose we’ve been a sort of constant to her over the last few years.” As well as raising 13 children, and home-schooling 11 of them (the older two have left home) Tania also blogs at

Compassion UK works with more than  1.8 million around the world. Working in partnership with the local church, they seek out the most vulnerable children and with the support of individual sponsors, provide them with the means to break the cycle of poverty and create a viable future.

Caitlin, 17, explains, “It’s hard for me to imagine what life is like in Uganda. This trip will be a completely new experience and I think it will make us look at life differently.”
The Sullivan family also sponsor 10-year-old Richecarde from Haiti through Compassion UK and Wajeeda, 15, from Sudan through Plan UK and Hilario 11, from Honduras through World Vision.

Becca Stanley

Words by Becca Stanley


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Compassion UK Christian Child Development, registered charity in England and Wales (1077216) and Scotland (SC045059). A company limited by guarantee, Registered in England and Wales company number 03719092. Registered address: Compassion House, Barley Way, Fleet, Hampshire, GU51 2UT.