We are excited that you are beginning to respond to our Mother’s Day cause! We only have two weeks left for you to join this cause and we wanted you to realize what a huge impact this will make in the community that we serve. By donating any amount, you will honor our moms trying to keep families together and your mom will be blessed with a beautiful necklace made by these hard working moms at the James Place.
Kara Little, our current year long intern serving at the James Place, had a lot to say about her experience. It is a glimpse into why it is so important to work together for this important cause. Kara has an MSW (master of social work) and has worked in our social work department with our local Ugandan social workers the past year. This is what she had to say:
“I’m often asked what a typical day is like here. To try and begin to describe that is near, if not impossible. The joy of living here is filled with non-repetitive days. One thing that I’ve learned in Uganda is that life is not guaranteed. We aren’t all guaranteed the privilege to grow old. We aren’t all guaranteed the privilege of accessible, quality, basic healthcare. We aren’t all guaranteed the privilege of watching our children grow and flourish. Before coming to Uganda, I had literally no idea what I was getting myself into. I’ve always felt like Jesus was calling me to Africa. Where exactly was unknown, until I came across HEAL Ministries. Receiving a response from Tina, the founder, exclaiming that she had been praying for a social work intern was an answer to more than one prayer. I had a plan and I had ambition. I also was lucky enough to have my best friend, Reed, by my side through this journey.
The transition to living in Jinja was relatively easier than I expected. Besides adjusting to the culture, food, and lifestyle changes, one thing remained the same across both cultures. The ability to love others. I love and am loved more. I knew Jesus was going to challenge my heart on this journey, I just couldn’t imagine the many ways He has.
Daily life for many Ugandans is not easy. Many people wake up not knowing how they will feed their children that same day. Many wake up from sleep on a simple mat on their dirt floor without even a blanket, or a mosquito net to cover them. Many sleep on the floor so their children and grandchildren can sleep in a bed and not feel the coldness of the night. Many pray everyday not knowing how they will pay school fees for their children. We’ve had many people come to the gates of HEAL begging for a job, even if there is no pay, a promised meal everyday will be enough. Can you imagine being willing to work every day for just one meal? Most of us struggle with working a typical 8-5 job five days a week and complain when we receive our paycheck. If we are honest, most of us reading this will never know the everyday struggles that are faced here. Most of us will never have to bury our child because of a lack of quality healthcare, access to basic medicine, or malnutrition. I’ve never met such strong, God-fearing people who continue to thrive and love despite the heartaches that keep flowing.
One of my favorite days of the week is Friday. Friday mornings we have a bible study with the women in our ministry. I’ve never witnessed such beautiful, honest worship. The women often walk over an hour to reach HEAL, multiple times a week, yet they enter the gates smiling with gratitude. These women are survivors. They are truly the strongest people I have ever known. They are fighting to keep their families together. Many of them are survivors of abusive relationships. Many of them are still in abusive relationships. To be able to witness them worshipping Jesus is truly breathtaking. To dance with these women and sloppily try to sing along in their local languages, Luganda and Lusoga, truly is a privilege. I wish you all could experience Jesus the way I have here. Jesus is here. His presence is truly evident all around me, every day; from the smile and belly-rolling laughter of a child, to the heart-wrenching tears of a woman who just lost a loved one. Although there is certainly a great deal of heartache, there is constant, unexplainable joy surrounding me. Joy that will make your toes curl with gratitude. I’m so grateful for the privilege of being here. The privilege of loving and being loved by such incredible people. If this is a glimpse of heaven, it is going to knock the breath out of all of us.
Many days I find myself repeating the words of a well-known song, "Broken Hallelujah".
Through the joy and the pain, the Ugandan people are teaching me to always sing Hallelujah. To love hard and to love deep. May you find grace, peace, and understanding through your own broken hallelujah.”
Please join us NOW and honor your mom for Mother’s Day with a gift that impacts another mom across the world!