Thursday, January 27, 2011

Lots of Adventures to share!!

First of all  Thanks for all your prayers especially for my breathing  --  my throat no longer hurts and nose has cleared up and no more nose bleeds lately  -- I was getting lots during my cold!! But now I can breathe close to normally every once in a while the stench is too much out side but it is tolerable.     We had an interesting day last week when we went out to do a seed project by harvesting a corn maze and on the way the bus broke down  3 hrs later back on the road on the hot morning to harvest.  It was more rewarding than corn detasseling as you got to see the actual corn and chuck it in the pile. Our first day of serving at church was quite fun  for the first service I helped with children’s church then  for the second service I ushered – I enjoyed both  next week an earlier Saturday night as we have to be at church from 7am till like 430 so it’s a big day!  We were surprised earlier this week when we were sent off in groups of 8-9 to find a way to help the community or a family in our designated area and get to know them and pray for them then followed by 2 more visits one more visit to get to know than a third time to bring them something or do something for the community. We meet some really friendly people in the area  (slums) so  heart breaking to see kids wearing dirty clothes and no shoes and playing with things if we say a child in our country we would quickly take it away or pretty much Lysol their hands if they touched.  We hope to clean up a bit of garbage in their area  (garbage is something that is everywhere   I am actually starting to not see it or even realize if I am walking on old bottles or paper etc so  I can imagine that people here don’t even see it.) We also hope to bring the kids some balls sandals and some other things to just have fun with them or a while.  I am enjoying getting to know my team more – and figuring out myself more, drawing closer to God and helping people in what every way possible. This initial part is hard as my heart breaks when I see the conditions people live in – and kids home all day cause parents can’t afford school fees. I wish I could do more but I’m praying God can use me in mighty ways in the coming months.   Please pray for proactive attitudes and leadership skills as it is easily to become saddened and see a need that is so big and feel so small. Also pray for Uganda’s upcoming presidential election which takes place early feb.
Take care and miss you all,
Love Amanda xoxo

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

One week

Hi everyone!! I hope everyone is doing well -- Mom and Dad leave for their 1st cruise this weekend and I am very excited for them!!   Good news --  I received my lost luggage yesterday J  I was very excited to have my own shampoo and toothpaste and the remainder of my clothing. On Saturday we went to the Bulrushes (Baby Watoto  -- which I loved) as well as a tour of one of the Watoto Villages. It was so awesome to see a little bit of Watoto  -- much more to see.  We are in the orientation phase of getting to know the area, the facilities and the course content. I am excited to get fully into it yet know that it will be very busy and challenging at times if not all the time. If you could pray for my breathing as I have symptoms of a sinus infection and am struggling to breathe as they burn their garbage as well as have tons of very polluting vehicles.   Will be posting more often.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Arrival in Africa

Safe arrival in Africa !! After a long 7+ hr flight and delayed nearly 2 hrs because water was frozen on the plane and than apparently paperwork. So unfortunately we missed our connecting flight straight to Uganda  so we had to wait more than 8 hrs in London for another flight. British Airways put us on Air Kenya (a bit nicer air crafts) and we had to fly in to Nairobi 7.5 hrs and then fly to Uganda from there another hr. to Uganda-- long days flying but only a minor bump on the road. And enjoyed the company of Ash and Matt and 2 new Watoto 360ers. Upon arrival in Uganda I was greeted with only one of my bags – fortunately  I had clothes and some necessities in that bag but missing shampoo and toothpaste but everyone had lots.  We were warmly geeted by 2 Watoto employees and experienced Ugandan driving very quickly  -- buses, taxis, trucks,  which were often over crowded.  I was so surprised to see so many people on the side of the road there were people everywhere from kids playing, people washing clothes, children playing or walking alone, people just sitting around watching cars or sitting on motor bikes. We drove past a TON of people in a short distance. Watoto 360 house for international students is amazing I am sharing a room with Ashlie from Ottawa (Julia’s wedding as well as another girl from Las Vegas.  We went to the shops today to purchase internet so  I will be able to keep my blog updated –time permitting of course. We have had a bit of orientation today and I know more about what to expect but  I look forward to finding out more about the program tomorrow at orientation.  I hope everyone is well at home and enjoying snow  -- I don’t miss it yet but know I will very soon.  Thank you for all your prayers and support I look forward to keeping you all informed.  ***Please keep my loved city Brisbane in your prayers , I miss Brisbane and they are experiencing a tough time but they are  resilient aussies and they will get through it together, God is infinitely able.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

T minus 6 days

As 2011 begins and as I do my last minute running around packing and saying my goodbyes, I look ahead with great anticipation of what’s to come in 2011. In less than a week I will set off to another amazing Continent – Africa.  I will be taking part in Watoto 360*.      
Back track -->  I am a graduate!!  I still can’t believe that I am done University I have experienced 4 amazing years going to St. Clair College where I enjoyed working a lot to save for University keeping busy with attending classes and hanging out with friends. Then I took a big jump and went to Brisbane for 2 years where I studied hard to become a primary school teacher, worked in child care and became involved at Hillsong Brisbane!!  I learned so much during these years about teaching plus about God, work, life, people and much more. My heart’s desire has always been standing up for Children’s rights and for those who cannot speak for themselves.  Knowing I wanted to serve at Watoto orphanage and work with children after graduating God has opened so many doors for me to serve and grow in Uganda. I am so excited for this new adventure and know I cannot even begin to fathom how God is going to work in me and through me during the next 5 months.