It is a blessing for us to have seen God’s Mighty Hand in 2015 so far. We are grateful to God for the wonderful gift of life that He has given to us. I bring salutation from the entire Lulwanda family and we say PRAISE JESUS!! Below are highlights of what has happened since December 2014.
Just as the rest of the world was celebrating the birth our lord and Savior, even at Lulwanda we had to join in. The day began with wonderful breakfast that comprised of milk tea and Rolex (something like a breakfast taco). Then the children prepared to go to church in their new Christmas outfits. Both girls and boys were dressed smart and you could really conclude that it was Christmas Day. From little Madina to Big Ivan, the children were very smart for the day. Great appreciation goes to the Sponsors and donors for your financial support and prayers.
After prayers, children came back for a sumptuous lunch. The delicacies included chicken, meat, rice, plantain, and a variety of vegetables. Sodas were in plenty for every child to have a bottle. We were blessed to have our Treasurer John Palmer and his family Bobbi Palmer, Lilly and Jackson. After lunch, the Palmers gave out Christmas gifts to all the 108 children, my own two daughters were beneficiaries as well. Of course me and my wife, we received gifts as well and so did the House moms. This was yet another moment of excitement for both the children and the staff. Indeed we are appreciative of John’s church and family members back home in Atlanta Georgia who gave the Christmas gifts. Thanks and be blessed.
Birth Day Celebrations
This is the norm every holiday to celebrate birthdays of both the children and the staff. Teacher Favor who was standing in for Natalie worked together with party planners and had a wonderful occasion. There was lunch, fun games and lots of entertainment, music and the main event was the cutting of the cake and serving. This was held on Wednesday 21st January 2015 in the main hall. We pray that the children grow to blow 101 candles.
The Good Neighbor Program
Under the auspices of Pastor David, the LCH children invited their Good Neighbor counterparts from the community to spend a day at Lulwanda. The event began with arrival of the community children, welcome remarks were given, breakfast served and followed by fellowship and a message from Pastor David. Lots of activities then followed up to the time of lunch. We had speeches and finally receiving of scholastic materials (school supplies). Also in this first holiday, Community children received a pair of new shoes and a school uniform. Great appreciation goes to MDPC for all the funding. Cathy Marshall is also appreciated for the co-ordination.
Placement of Last Year’s S.4 Students
As we prayed for success upon our pioneer S.4 students, God answered our prayers and they all passed to go to the next level. I had a series of meeting with them and one thing I read from their minds, none of them was willing to join vocational or trade schools. Their argument was that they have always been told that they would branch to university or trade school after completing high school S6. I heeded to their call and hence placed them as follows: Anthony Wanzala was placed in St. Mary’s College, Lugazi and he was given a science combination of Biology, Chemistry Mathematics and ICT (BCM/ICT). Emma Ocaya was also placed in the same school to offer an Arts combination of History, Literature, Divinity and ICT (HLD/ICT). This now brings to 15 the number of students studying in that school.
Still under secondary placement, Mercy Chekwemboi was admitted to ST. Paul’s to offer Arts subjects of history, Divinity, Fine Art and ICT (HDF.A/ICT). Doreen Kibukuna was also taken on in the same school to offer Arts combination of History, Entrepreneurship, Divinity and ICT (HENTD/ICT). Sylvia Logose equally in the same school is to offer History, Divinity, Geography and ICT (HDG/ICT). Allen Muhijja is in the same school and she is to offer Divinity, Entrepreneurship, Fine Art and ICT (DENTF.A/ICT) and Ivan Kuloba in the same school is to offer History, Entrepreneurship Divinity and ICT (HENTD/ICT). In summary only one student is offering Sciences while the six are on Arts subject combinations. We continue to pray for them so that they can go up to University level.
Truck Repair / Engine Overhaul
This was done successfully and the truck is back on course. We are extremely grateful for the donations that enabled the truck to be repaired. Indeed this has saved a lot on weekly shopping trips that were being burdened by the van. Besides we can buy produce in large quantities because we have the means of transportation.
Hiring of a Social Worker
Because our previous Social Worker quit and departed, we are hiring 2 Social Workers. We ran an advert in the government owned newspaper, the New Vision on Monday 9th March 2015. The deadline for receiving applications is Wednesday 18th March 2015. So far we have received close to 20 applicants from the Presbyterian denomination and outside. We are going to make a shortlist and conduct the interviews soon. We are going to hire a male and a female.
With excitement I want to report that we have secured a compound for this project. Rent for the whole of this year has been paid and sincerely we are grateful to our donors and sponsors for the good heart. We are moving to the level of buying furniture, household items and supplies, make the necessary improvements, repaint the walls and arrange to suit our interests. We took there the S.4s of last year to check on the facilities and they also gave their ideas. Since none of them has joined vocational or trade schools, they will use the facility starting in the month of April when they get home for holidays. Currently there is a guard who stays there and we hope soon the Ugandan couple will be moving in. We have met two carpenters who gave us independent quotes on the types of furniture we need. After studying them, we shall split the work into two and pay 50% of the total amount so that we can get the furniture in a short time.
Recruiting 10 Additional Orphaned and Vulnerable Children into LCH
This is as well on course and there is already excitement from the staff about bringing 10 more orphans to Lulwanda. We met the related Government Official, the Probation Officer last week on this issue. She already has six candidates on her desk that need support and care. We also presented two that we were aware of. We then met with Pastor Morris and Aidah for further proposal of names. So we agreed that we can have up 16 or 18 names of children listed, then a team comprising of Mama Aidah, Natalie and any of us plus the Probation officer will make home visits between 23rd March- 31st March 2015 and make an assessment on which children should be taken in. The general consensus so far is to look for total orphans of ages 3-5 years but also bearing in mind that not all orphans are vulnerable or in desperate need so these assessments will give us the children who are actually vulnerable and we narrow to 10 children for the start because that is the space available. More information will be posted as we proceed.
We continue to appreciate all the financial support that you send. We also appreciate all your fervent prayers without which the smooth running of Lulwanda would have been difficult. We say thank you All.
MUSAGALA SIMON PETER
Lulwanda Children’s Home