Monday, September 29, 2014
Crazy as it seems, this is probably our last blog of the trip. Although it feels like we haven’t been home in forever, it also feels as though the trip started just a few days ago. We are currently in
Kampala at the Adonai Guest
House – where it all began almost three weeks ago. As with the Jopfan Hotel in Kabale, we feel
very welcomed here. The chef prepares
delicious meals, the grounds are very peaceful, and the weather is
beautiful. We have also met others here
at the Adonai Guest House who are involved in various mission activities and we
will be making contact with some of them to learn how we might improve some of
our programs based on their experiences.
Our trip here yesterday took about 7 hours. But we certainly didn’t waste that time. In the “guys” van, there was a lot of continued discussion on the future strategy for the HANDS program. Dave also spent time working on our budget and expenses. In the “gals” van, we had a two-hour meeting regarding Pathways – a plan currently being developed to help our HOPE orphans make the transition from the education phase of their lives to higher education and employment.
Today a group is in town accomplishing several things. First on the list, Ginny, Sue and Generous are shopping for more material at the market to provide to our volunteers in
Michigan who sew the
beautiful handcrafts we sell at Uniquely Uganda and our art fairs. John and Roger are visiting a store to do
some research on farm equipment that is more practical and common in this
area. Toni and Karen will be paying a
visit to the vocational school where Toni’s sponsored orphan (through a different program) is
currently attending classes. There are
many, many vocational schools in Uganda and the more schools we
learn about, the better prepared we will be as we develop our Pathways
And …. drum roll please …. they (Generous, Ginny, Sue, John, Roger, Toni and Karen) will all be attending a meeting with the Vice President of Uganda! What an honor, and how wonderful to be able to introduce him to ACT.
Michelle is now in her second day in the village since we dropped her at the
and said good-bye
after dinner on Saturday night. She has
already painted the one outside wall on the Center that we were unable to
finish during our time there. She is in
Kabale today with Alexander and Josiah picking up some food and looking into
some additional items that will help improve her phone and internet access. She has many people in the village looking
out for her: Josiah and Alexander, who
she will be working with each day; HANDS team members; Generous’ sister, Mabel,
who lives two doors down; Father John is at Uganda Martyrs school across the
lane from the Center and is available to Michelle whenever she needs him … the
list goes on. She also has contact
information for a Peace Corp volunteer who we all met at the Jopfan Hotel in
Kabale. He indicated there are a group of about eight Empowerment
Center U.S. volunteers
who get together periodically – and will probably celebrate Thanksgiving as a
Michelle will be starting a blog once she gets everything up and running and we will be sure to provide the address through church newsletters and e-blasts to those on our distribution list. If you are not currently on our distribution list, but would like to be, please visit our website and on the “contact us” page you can let us know you would like to be added.
Below are a few more photos (that Dave was too tired to add on Saturday night J). Be sure to hold Sunday, November 2 from 3:00 – 5:00 to attend our trip review presentation. There will be many more pictures and stories that we hope will give you a better idea of all that has been accomplished during our trip. The presentation will be held at Memorial Presbyterian Church in
Tonight we will be going out for dinner to Fang Fang – a local Asian restaurant as it is John’s birthday, and a favorite of those on the team who have been here before. Tomorrow, Tuesday, will be spent organizing all of our 18 check-in suitcases, our carry-ons and getting ready for the drive to the airport, which can take quite some time due to traffic, even though it’s not far from here. We appreciate all the prayers that we know have been coming our way, and would ask for continued prayers for our journey home!
Thanks for following our adventures and mission!