Friday, January 31, 2014

Sleeping Like a Baby?

The new year brought a much needed spraying of our baby house to shoo away the bats who had taken up residence in the roof.  While that is going on the babies and toddlers are staying over at our guesthouse which usually houses teams who come to volunteer.

The beginning of year has also brought a team of auditors to New Hope to look over our books.
"The connection," you ask. 

Well, as we shared a meal last evening with Sarah and Stu Dendy who oversee Hope Family (our baby house) it suddenly dawned on us that the auditors are also staying at the guesthouse.  .
So as we finished our evening with prayer for good night sleeps for the babies we also included the auditors.   Hopefully they'll enjoy the babies as much as we do!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

A Busy Week

The weeks seem to fly by here and before I know it another one is gone. Here are a few moments from last week.   On Sunday we hosted a doctor from Northern Ireland who is working at Kiwoko hospital. It was fascinating to hear of his plans of developing a medical work in Goli, a town on the border of the DRC in north western Uganda.  He had also treated I.'s brother (see last post) and was able to update us on his condition. 
Envisioning 2014 Monday and Tuesday were the last two days of our staff wide training days called Envisioning.  We were blessed and challenged by our speaker Brian Watts, a pastor from Langley B.C. So much to think and pray about as we begin another year.  Tuesday afternoon David and I went to Kiwoko hospital to pick up I. and his brother and mother and take them home.  R. needs heart valve surgery desperately.  Before leaving we  gathered outside their tiny mud home and prayed for this situation which is beyond our understanding.

 Wednesday it was back to home-schooling my crew.  I also began working with a boy from the primary school who has experienced learning difficulties.  Here was one of the assessment type activities I did with him to find out more about where he's at.  Abandoned as a baby in a pit latrine he was cared for at our baby home and has been adopted by an Ugandan couple.   

Inquisitive looks at the latest little addition to our baby house.  The girls went on Thurs. afternoon to help out and snapped a few photos.  They were excited to meet the grandmother of one of the little toddlers. One of our Ugandan extension workers has located members of the paternal family and they are willing and able to care for Joseph.  Jaaja is spending time here first to get to know him in familiar surroundings and we are thankful that he will be going to live full time with her. 
Thursday was also a chance to sample a local delicacy 'flying ants.'   Pictured here are the Hope family children snapping up the goodies.   Christina captured one for the camera before she and Catriona consumed them. 

Friday we consumed a goodie more to my liking.  The girls have been doing a cooking class as part of their distance learning and Friday was scone day.  We delivered a piping hot one to Dad's desk and enjoyed them over break ourselves.  We promise to make some more for anyone who visits!
On Saturday morning we walked to the fields to help with the maize harvest.  We always enjoy these times in the garden with our family group.  Many of the children who were away over the holidays visiting relatives are now back and so it was a chance to reconnect while harvesting the maize that will help to feed the family over the coming months. 

And so another week has come to an end.  Somewhere in that time I also took minutes for our David family associate meeting,  met with teachers, cooked meals, visited staff, handed out cups of water, and shopped at our market. Yes we're busy but so thankful for the opportunity to live life in this part of God's world and see Him working.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Strength to Stand

Another snapshot of a life.
 I. came to New Hope's Kasana site as a small boy and has grown up here and completed S4 and his investment year. When he was a little boy his mother was unfit to care for him but through God's transforming grace she has come to faith and now works herself at our baby house.   Reserved and quiet by nature we have come to know him as he learned some computer skills with David and helped him out at the office.  Last year he made the courageous decision to move back home to the village to support his mother and extended family.  We found out how courageous that decision was this week as his brother suffered convulsions following a boda (motorcycle) accident.  As I. waited beside his bother's bed in hospital, uncertain of his condition, he called and asked David to bring our family father Uncle Mulu and another member of staff to be with him.  He will need ample strength in the days ahead to stand with his family as medical bills mount.  We know that it won't be easy but we pray that this young man whose actions speak louder than his words will be given the strength and continued courage to live out his faith.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Future Nurse

Occasionally I like to share something about some of the children we work with to give you a flavour not only of the challenges but also the joys as we see God transforming lives.  A. pictured here with Catriona came to us from our northern centre for her Investment Year program.  Following the first four years of secondary school the children take a year off to do life skill training and job internships.  Part of that year is spent in Kampala the capital city to familiarize our village kids with life in the 'big city.'  A. did one of her placements at a blood bank and another at our local hospital which has confirmed her desire to train as a nurse.  She worked hard to learn Luganda which is not her tribal language so she could communicate with patients at the hospital. Sponsorship funds will help with a portion of her school fees but she has to work to provide the rest of the money.  Over the holidays A. worked tirelessly at whatever jobs she could find to earn money for her fees.  Whenever I saw her there was a smile on her lips and a spring in her step.  She woke up early to scrub the floors at the home she was staying in and then went out looking for work.  As she shared her dream to be a nurse I was humbled by her servant heart.  She longs to give back to her community as a way of thanking God for all He has done in her life.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Ugandan Wildlife

Thought you might be interested in what a trip to Ugandan can include.  Our friends from Calgary went on safari to Murchison Falls and enjoyed it immensely.  Their favourite part of the trip was a boat ride along the Nile where they came upon this enormous elephant.  It was understandably a little startling when this guy decided he didn't like them venturing into his drinking area and started flapping his ears.  Their boat reversed in a hurry.

 Another highlight was seeing this hippo and it's newly born baby. 

Check out the teeth on this one!
The stunning colours on the birds here are breathtaking and then one final shot of our favourite form of wildlife - John with the Frasers.