Children in Uganda Play With Lego Bricks for the First Time
A joyful video shows children in Uganda playing with Lego bricks for the first time.
Lego Africa, a charity created by a six-year-old California boy named Micah Slentz, collected the lego blocks from families who no longer wanted them in the U.S. before sending them over to Africa.
The charity sent 50 pounds of Lego bricks to a school in rural Uganda, where neither the students nor the teachers had ever seen the toy before.
As a video shows, within just a few minutes, the kids get to work building the bricks - with big smiles across their faces.
Micah came up with the idea after his dad Sequoia Slentz - who was irritated that the boy kept asking for new toys - started telling him about children who did not have toys or even homes.
Slentz told INSIDE EDITION: "Months later, I was buying something for him at the Lego store and he grabbed a second Lego set and announced, 'We are sending this set to Africa for one of those poor kids there.'"
At first Slentz thought the idea was ridiculous, but when he spoke to a friend who'd spent time in Africa, the friend told him “the kids would go bananas” for the toys.
“He told me that most of these kids have never seen any type of toy and Legos would just be something unimaginable for them,” Slentz said. “Every time I stepped on a Lego at my house, I would think about this."
He continued: "I realized that they're not just toys, they're tools to develop a young mind, and that every day, thousands of kids in the U.S. outgrow their Lego and they end up just sitting in some attic or garage not helping anyone. I started to realize Micah actually had a brilliant idea.”
The organization has since sent hundreds of pounds of donated Lego bricks to villages in Uganda and Botswana over the past three years by teaming up with the Peace Corps. Some of the toys are kept in schools, while children also get to take some home.
Lego Africa is fundraising through Crowdrise to send their largest shipment of blocks to Uganda and so that Micah and his dad can travel there to hand deliver the toys.
On the trip, they will be traveling with Lydia Natoolo, a Ugandan woman now living in California. She runs a nonprofit called Love A Community.
"Most of the innocence of poor children in Uganda is taken away at a young age," she said. "You start doing chores, fetching water, cooking food. Legos will bring that sense of being a child back to these children."