Here begins our updates from our August 2012 trip. We have 20 aussies here, as well
as 6 Americans who have joined our group. We are here to live as Ugandans, to learn and to soak it all up!
Today we had our first session of our specially developed program for our sponsor kids.
Our kids here in Uganda are better off than millions of kids here in the North.
They live in a beautiful home with their brothers and sisters, their school fees are
paid, they have adequate medical care and they are given lots to eat. We are grateful
to our sponsors for helping us to provide these material needs, however during this
trip we wanted to address the emotional and spiritual needs of these kids.
In the middle of 2011, we watched a video that featured the story of a Ugandan sponsor
child, who grew up to become a politician in her area. Coincidentally, she looked
exactly like one of our very own sponsor kids, Monica, and we thought "well if she
can do it, so can Monica!" We started brainstorming and planning and came up with
a two day program to teach out kids that they are precious, they are valuable, and
they can grow up to be whatever they want to be.
Today we started by making fools of ourselves... Sitting in the big garden in Lira,
under the grass hut, we asked the kids how much one chicken costs.
"It depends on the size!" screamed one. "about 25,000 Ugandan shillings." (approx. $10aud)
We then had a race to see who could catch the most chickens in the yard. The kids, who
range in age from 8-16 pounced on their chickens in no time flat, where as us muzungu's
(slang for "white prrson) were all hopeless having never touched a chicken in our lives.
Once the ice was broken, we started discussion. We asked what was valuable to each of the
children. Answers started coming from the boys, "food!" "friends!" and then one girl at
the front said "education." all of us leaders smiled- bingo! Other answers that broke
hearts were "God" and "peace."
We asked "if that chicken is worth 25000 shillings, how much are you worth?" the
kids were quiet. We explained to them that they are worth far more than all the chickens
in the world, than all the cattle, than all the gold and silver you could carry.
They are precious and unique, and valuable to us and to each other.
We then spent a beautiful afternoon painting, chatting, and sewing all together. Some young mums joined
our group, and we were able to act as babysitters and take their kids from them to enable them to sew.
It was so rewarding to see the joy on their faces as they did something for themselves. It was rewarding for us
to give them a much needed break from motherhood.
Tomorrow we will talk about choices- that we all have decisions in this life and some
will lead to good things whilst others may not. Hopefully it goes just as well as today!