Monday, December 15, 2014

Exciting Times

We would like to share with you some wonderful news.

God has opened yet another door for our Home of Angels and we are very pleased for many reasons.  As of January 1, 2015, we will be working together with the Timothy Outreach International Society (TOIS).  TOIS is a Christian charity that operates schools, clinics, community development and other ministries in Uganda.  Throughout this past year, we have gotten to know some of the TOIS principals in Canada along with the leadership team in Uganda.  We feel that God has paved the way for the connection between our two organizations and we will be able to work together effectively to develop and operate ministries that show God’s love to some of the most needy people in Uganda.

Effective January 1, 2015, all donations and sponsorship money should be sent to Barb Giraud, #96-32691 Garibaldi Drive, Abbotsford, B.C.  V2T 5T7.  Cheques are to be made out to TOIS and Home of Angels written on the subject line below. Tax receipts will then be issued by TOIS.

We have had a very exciting past two months and we are all looking forward to Christmas which is almost upon us.  The children have chosen to stay together for Christmas where we can all celebrate the birth of Jesus together.  Presently they are  attending a Bible camp in Entebbe with Dolly and Welli, our dear friends originally from Abbotsford and having the time of their lives both learning and making new friends.

We have a new little boy named Ivan who has recently come to live with us.  Ivan is 11 years old and has come from a village in the north where Serving His Children has an outreach.  It was a difficult start for him but today, 3 weeks later, he is thriving with his new brothers and sisters.  We realized with Ivan that in the future, when we bring in other children, we must do it slowly to give each one the individual attention they need to adjust. It is mandatory to have this time to accomplish the transition for these little ones. Most of them have come from very difficult situations and they need a lot of love and encouragement.  We feel so blessed that God has given us this gift of bringing hope and love into these children at our Home of Angels.  

We would like you to meet Jeff and Shannon Dyck.  They are the leadership team already established in Uganda by TOIS.  Jeff and Shannon are originally from Canada and with their 4 lovely children, are now living in Masaka/Kibaale.  They both are very knowledgeable in running both the Kibaale Community Centre and the Timothy Outreach International Society in Masaka.  They have already been instrumental for us with advice towards running an operation such as ours.

The day finally arrived when we greeted little Ivan at our gates.  Renee and her team from Serving His Children brought him over to live with us as Renee realized how happy our children were and he would have a good family to live with.  We are so grateful to have this little guy (with Edwin).  He has struggled with the unimaginable but with a lot of love and encouragement, he is already adjusting to his new family.  We are looking for sponsors for him if anyone would be interested in helping him.

What's a welcome without a party and cake?    

How could anyone not want to belong to this family?  We just have to keep remembering that they were all scared the first time they entered that gate.  They seem to feel each child's fear and make an effort to change it with a smile and a hug.

The girls are all learning to sew.  Each day we learn 2 new stitches and they are tested at the end of each week.  I am now watching them teach the Aunties what they had learned that day.  Edwin and I will be setting up a sewing room to teach them on a machine next.

I never thought I would be doing this here.  OK, so what does a person do when they have an entire banana plantation of 300 trees and the bananas are everywhere?  Bake of course, but I got smart.  I thought of teaching this art of baking to the girls.  Today I did and they loved it.  Matter a fact, their bread was better than mine.  They shared one loaf with everyone and will plan to practice again tomorrow.

Mariam celebrated her birthday on December 10th.  We baked a birthday cake and while surprising her, Desire poured water over her head as this is the tradition.  Couldn't resist this picture of shock.

Our passion fruit is getting tall and already flowering.   To utilize every space possible, kale has been placed between the plants so that the children will have their greens for nutrition.

These are our 300 broilers that are now ready to be sold.  Because it's the Christmas season, they are selling very quickly.  We have another 200 birds that will be ready for sale at the end of the month with one purchaser requesting all of them.  

Our first load of 40 birds going out of the compound.  Yes, you are seeing this correctly and they are being transported all the way to Kampala like this (80km).  They have since returned for another 100 birds for the same journey.  Apparently our birds are very tasty.

These are some of our 1000 layers.  They will be ready to lay eggs in 2 weeks in their new nests and we are very excited to see the results of our labour.  Thanks to David we will have an outlet for the eggs but what is more exciting....we will have protein for the children.  We are still in the learning stages but we are so proud of our few workers who have kept them alive and in good health.  Many people here will lose 1/2 their flock to disease, but ours are still in tact.  Thank you James and Sula.

Exciting times are still to come and we are continually witnessing what God has done in the lives of these children.  They sit and chat together about how they are going to help the next child or how they will teach the new ones the alphabet if they have never gone to school.  It truly brings tears of joy.

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