Here is a snapshot of the last three weeks of life in Uganda since I returned...
I hit the ground running taking care of sponsorship children's needs! Through individual sponsors, 65 children and their families have been blessed with sponsorship to attend school. This year, we updated the cost of a sponsorship to include a new uniform and sportswear outfit, a new pair of shoes, books for school, and even a haircut. It may not sound like a long process, but you better believe it was! I am now almost finished getting things taken care of.
When I returned, most of the uniforms were completed since we measured students before I left in December. However, the seamstress had others who helped make the many uniforms, and they did not follow the measurements! On top of the uniforms and sportswear not fitting the children properly, they also didn’t label which uniform belonged to which child. Distributing uniforms turned into a little bit of a nightmare! Josephine, the administrator, and I spent about 5 hours going through the uniforms and getting the kids to try them on and then try another until they found their fit.
I want to back track real quick to my flight from Amsterdam to Uganda. There were many empty seats, and it just so happened that my row had two empty seats beside me. I was for real praising the Lord because that meant I would get to sprawl out to sleep. Well, there were also a couple seats behind me that were available. I saw a lady move to those empty seats after we took off. I didn’t think much of it and slept most of the flight. There is a short stop-over in Rwanda, and I had to wake up for landing and take off again. The lady began talking to me and told me her name was Nassali. She’s Ugandan but has always lived in the States with her family. She and other family members were coming to Uganda for just a couple weeks. She introduced me to her friend, Akii, and after talking a few minutes, it turned out they had been praying and wanting an opportunity to do outreach while in Uganda for two weeks. I shared about my organization, and it just hit us both that this was God working! Of course, DLM loves visitors so I absolutely invited them to come to the school. And they did!!! Up until that meeting on the plane, they had not connected with any ministry to help with even though they had been praying. God is too good to comprehend!
They came multiple days and were such a blessing to the children and myself, as well. During the chaos of that first Saturday trying to fit children in the new uniforms, they were playing with the other children who were awaiting their turn, and they also took photos of each child. I couldn’t imagine having to fit them and then, go outside to take their photo. God knew I needed help, and He sent these two in His timing! They definitely were such a blessing and continue to be a blessing to us!! We hope and plan to see them again soon, maybe even this summer.
Getting back to the sponsorship children, we also needed new shoes for them! There is a factory in Kabowa that makes shoes. So, two guys from the factory came and “measured” each child’s foot. They were old school measuring…they traced each child's foot on a piece of paper. Much to my surprise, most of the shoes fit, and only a few were too big. After measuring, a week later they brought the shoes. They came back today to bring the rest of the shoes as well as the ones they had to fix. So, the shoe process has been finished! Boy were the kids excited for this, as well! They looked so “smart” or nice as we would say!
The last major event for this semester was getting a man to come to shave their hair. As sad as it is to us that the girls have to shave their heads, it is their culture and many were happy to get the trim. Another blessing!
Many parents of the sponsored children have called Josephine and thanked God for all that has been given to their children. One mom in particular hadn’t yet realized we paid her son's fees. She came to me and thanked me for the books we bought for him. She asked if I could assist with his school fees. It was a joy to tell her that the fees were already paid, and that he would be getting new shoes and a new uniform and sportswear. I told her to thank God for His blessings and for providing his sponsor in America. She teared up and even as she was walking away, she was wiping her eyes. It is so awesome to see God bless these moms through our sponsors!!! Even though those of you who sponsor will probably never know, these parents are extremely grateful for all that you do for their children. You are thanked and loved!
We were also blessed by two more visitors last week! One of my friends here had visitors and sent them my way for two days of ministry. We loved having Uncle Bruce and Auntie Tracy. The students were so funny when I introduced Uncle Bruce...they kept calling him Uncle Bruce "Lee"!! They came and read Bible stories and loved on the children. Auntie Tracy also got to give a short message during our women’s meeting. Another God moment is that she had been jotting notes down before they came to Uganda because God revealed she was going to share with women. She had NO IDEA she was even going to get to come see the ministry let alone that she would be available for our women's outreach! When I found out Tuesday was one of their available days to volunteer, I asked if she would like to share with the women. She said she knew God was thinking like here ya go! It was so awesome to later realize that God had already spoken to her about it, and then, He provided the opportunity. God is amazing!
Since returning, I have also been able to meet with some friends, have a few rest days, and go to my church where I have been serving with the children and recently, youth!
This year, I am trying to get better about keeping everyone updated! I hope to post daily or every other day on Facebook and Instagram. I know you all love seeing these sweet faces! Plus, no two days are alike!
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If you aren't on Facebook or Instagram, we will be emailing updates so you won't miss a thing!
Love to you all and thank you for all the prayers and support,