I’ve just arrived back from a couple of weeks in Uganda and have had a great trip, our national team are doing a phenomenal job with the diverse range of roles within the communities we minister in, ranging from our Daycare Centre teachers our community librarians, our school chaplain team who have been doing a brilliant job running the Shine & Strength programs in secondary schools, our pastors who are running vibrant and impacting community church’s in Kampala and Abim, our social work team both in Kampala and Abim just to touch the surface.
I’d like to give you an idea of some of the complex issues our team face on a daily basis while working in some of the poorest areas of Uganda, last week I was out walking through the community in Kampala we minister in, a single mother whose 5 year old child who is in our scholarship program had lost her job and had been doing odd jobs such as laundry and general bits and pieces to earn just enough to feed her family, she had fallen behind in rent by a few weeks and returned home to her small shanty shack in the slums one evening to find the landlord had removed the door and was evicting her, her only options to sleep on the streets with her 2 young children she was devastated and hopeless, our team were not only able to counsel and speak hope into her desperate situation but are also equipped with resources to respond; the solution being that together we found a similar price ranged rental room and facilitated the first 3 months food with a loan repayment plan and support to ensure that she sets aside appropriate funds over the coming months to cover the monthly rent.
That afternoon just as we were having lunch, a 14yr old Muslim girl called Aisha walked over to where we were seated in her arms was a beautiful and very malnourished 2 month baby (not the one pictured to the right). Aisha told her heartbreaking story of how her older sister who was principal caregiver of Aisha and her younger siblings had fallen pregnant and passed away during childbirth. The father of the baby was never in the picture so that left 14 yr. old Aisha the huge responsibility to look after her little niece Zaitune, this had meant dropping out of school and also taking care of her 3 younger siblings, phew heartbreaking stuff and it still brings tears to my eyes writing this. Our team first responded to the immediate need of little Zaitune who had been drinking boiled water with tea leaves as there wasn’t any money for formula, we initiated an action plan with Aisha in not only providing formula and also showing her how to prepare it, our team mobilised to practically assist and support the household in this desperate situation, our social work team have begun tracing a realative that Aisha informed us about living out in one of the rural villages. Again, our team were able to respond immediately to this urgent need because of people just like you who are reading this, who not only support children in our child sponsored program, but also to people who are part of our Rescue Fund which I would like to bring to your attention today for as little as $10 per month you can help enable our team to be to first responders to daily emergencies you can literally be the hands and feet that save and rescue a life like little Zaitune.
Uganda unlike Australia and many developed countries doesn’t have a functioning social welfare system, Operation Uganda is as many of you know is just a small ministry started by my wife Jenny and I, back in 2005 after losing everything we owned in a house fire. The words I hope to never say to someone like the evicted mother or to Aisha is; “No sorry we can’t help”.
If you would like to ensure that we can continue to say YES and help respond to the emergencies we face on a daily basis you can give as little as $10 per month to our Rescue Fund by clicking this link you can start today and you’ll be equipping our team to say YES!
check out our facebook page or to watch the short clip of Aisha and Zaitune click here, if you would like some more info on our Rescue fund you’ll find out more on our website: www.operationuganda.org/rescue-fund
I would like to say a HUGE thanks to you for your involvement with Operation Uganda your partnership is what enables us to continue to impact and bring hope to the precious people of Uganda.
Bless you heaps,
Russ & Jen and all the team from OU