When Caring Kids put Adults to Shame:
How is it that a few Australian kids could afford to help 3000 needy children in a Northern Uganda IDP camp?
Three Australian kids approached us with a special request as we were preparing to leave for Uganda. One 11 year old had raised money by buying items he had purchased from garage sales. He repaired them and advertised them on eBay, selling them for a profit. A 17 year old girl had been tithing 50% of her income from babysitting. Another girl gave from what she had saved from her weekly allowance. Each of these kids came to us with the request that we personally oversee the distribution of their gift to children who were suffering in northern Uganda.
When we were on our way to Gulu in northern Uganda we dropped in and visited one of the hundreds of IDP (Internally Displaced People's) Camps that dot the whole region. We found in this one camp, just 15 miles from Gulu, gatherings of makeshift huts and over 1000 familes. We were told that there were 3000 children in this one camp, and this was small by comparison to some of the other camps. We were able to purchase a small truckload of items from the nearby trading centre and have them delivered to the camp. We focused on items which were specifically requested by people in the camps: A few luxury items that would excite the children and make life a little more pleasant - Salt, Soap and Biscuits. It was a bandaid measure at best, and did not begin to scratch the surface of the total needs, but nevertheless sent a message of hope and love to 3000 people who needed some encouragement. God bless those Aussie kids for their love and faith. They gave LOVINGLY. They gave SACRIFICIALLY. They gave IN FAITH. What can we learn from their example?
Ironically, the soil in this area is rich and fertile, and the climate is ideal for growing food. The insecurity in the region is primarily what causing many people to suffer from malnutrician and hunger. People who live far from the well-protected urban centres are forced to leave their farms and crops to find security in the towns or IDP camps. Those who do not take such measures live with the very real danger that rebels will come and kidnap their children, murder those who resist, steal their food supplies and burn their homes. When you look around the countryide and see just how richly blessed the countryside is, one can't help but see very clearly that the whole problem is political in nature. Northern Uganda is an under-governed and under-policed region where the rebels opperate with relative impunity. Hopefully this will change soon given that the whole country is now taking this matter very seriously and calling upon the President to act.
After visiting the IDP camp we took some time to visit with a project worker's family. Timothy's mother is one of the lucky ones who lives fairly close to Gulu. She, along with thousands of others in the area, are able to farm their crops during the daytime and then walk into town for security at night. Nevertheless, even so close to town the rebels have attacked. Click on the photo on the right and watch this video to see Timothy explain how rebel's hacked their way through brickwork to gain entrance to his mother's house. This video also shows just how rich and fertile the area is, and how God has blessed the Ugandan people with a wide variety of fruits and vegetables to enjoy.
Thursday, November 9, 2006 printer friendly version | 9010 reads
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