As one of goals of training and educating the whole child coupled with the Ministry of Education and Sports requirement to develop the learners’ talents through games and sports, two of our teachers Mr. Chelangat Elly and Miss Namata Sylvia went for the training.

games 2014By March 28th the first phase of competition happened at Katooke sub-cluster. Our school sent 24 kids under the age of twelve and 24 kids under fourteen. From the four schools competing our school Essuubi Eppya Vocational Primary School emerged the first with 12 participants qualifying to the next level cluster.

On a remarkable note and at five cluster competitions with 24 of our students representing at each one, three of our children were selected to qualify to the district competitions, they include Moses in P.6, Prossy in P.5, and Charles in P.2.

When the district competitions took place at Kiziba cluster on 23 April 2014, Moses exhibited excellent performances to still qualify for the National level in May in Soroti District.

Many thanks to the school games teachers for their sacrificial investment of time and energy especially Chellangat Elly, Berwanaho Clive, Okitoi Isaac, and Namata Sylvia.

Furthermore acknowledgement goes to the Education committee for supervising the schools. Finally special thanks to the headmaster Mr. Katabazi Simon for his timely responses and recommending the schedules for athletics training.fiona

Thanks to the parents of all the children whom they gave us (the school) to shape their talents.

Continue praying for the teachers and the children even for more opportunities to exploit various talents.

- Kokas Otim, Deputy Head Teacher at EEVPS

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P1000365 We have spent a decent amount of time at the Kenya Cancer Center which is affiliated with the MP Shah Hospital this week.  And it’s been a blessing.  It’s also stirred a little of my heart…and truth be told more than a little.  Yesterday, as I stood with A. Ketty in the hallway of the radiotherapy area.  My heart did a little pause as I looked up and saw signs noting that there were two rooms for radiation treatment.  I hadn’t realized that this one facility had two radiation machines.  I saw and I technically didn’t have to ask… but I did.  The tech confirmed that there were, in fact, two machines.  TWO.  That’s Bili in Luganda.  Deux in French.  And Dos in Spanish.  You might be wondering why this made me pause.  I paused because the one and only radiation machine in Uganda is not working.  The pause was the flesh against the faith.  The rawness of the reality.  The reality of the many who are not receiving treatment right now and the reality of God’s graciousness in paving the way for Aunt Ketty to come here.  And the equally important reality that God is good and He is sovereign.  His goodness does not change because there is or there is not a working machine in Uganda.  Does it pull at my emotions?  Yes.  Does it make me pray for the many needing treatment?  Yes.  Am I choosing to rest in His goodness?  Yes, with His help I am.  He IS good.  And so I smile a smile that doesn’t want to leave my face as I stand beside my sister Ketty.  He’s got her.  However that looks, He’s got her.  And for right now, His having her includes radiation and chemotherapy… and a keen awareness of HIS presence.  And so A. Ketty got on that machine yesterday afternoon.

P1000360And as I left her with the attendant, I found myself smiling and not being able to stop.  A. Ketty was receiving treatment!   She was on the machine! I started texting everyone….and as I did the smile only grew.  I saw people looking at me… and I didn’t care.  A. Ketty was receiving treatment! I am still smiling about it even now as I type.  Just as I know many all over are.

 

 

 
P1000368And the agenda for today was chemo.  And so we went in early and after a short while, we were welcomed to the chemotherapy suite.  And within a short while, her chemo journey began.  She was given pre medications, fluids, and ultimately her first round of chemo.  She did great!   She was on a drip for a little over 6 hours.  Her nurse was Irene and it was clear that she absolutely loved what she did.  She was warm, engaging, and encouraging.  It was amazing! Once it was all finished, A. Ketty walked herself to her second round of radiation… and walked herself out.  I just woke her up a short while ago for some medications.  She is resting well and will God-willing sleep through the night.  In the meantime, I thank God that He’s got her.  He’s got Ketty Okoth safely in the palm of His hands. And He has good for her.  P1000374

Kimberly White, nurse at Kasana Children’s Centre

Zephaniah 3:17
“The Lord your God is in your midst a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by His love; he will exult over you with loud singing.”

 

Thank you to so many who have responded with prayers and financial support. The road ahead continues to be a long journey for Aunt Ketty and her family. If you feel led to financially support her cancer treatment, please visit the donation page and designate your gift to the “Ketty Okoth Cancer Fund.” Thank you for walking this journey as a community.

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Hello,

Just wanted to give you all an update on A. Ketty.  After taking the 11pm bus from Kampala to Nairobi, we arrived about mid-day Tuesday. Thankful for the ways in which Jesus was present.  When we arrived at the bus station Monday night, they asked A. Ketty for her two extra passport pictures … which we were never told she needed.  God took care of it. A. Ketty had an extra expired identification card in her wallet and we had photo copies and fresh color pictures with us.  Passport photo shops were closed and understandably so.  It was 10 PM at night and a National holiday.  A. Ketty made it through the Kenyan border check faster than I did.  Amen!

The taxi man who met us in Nairobi, who had been recommended by someone another missionary at Kasana knew, ended up being connected to my home church back in the States!  Little glimpses of JESUS very actively being present with us.

Family

We arrived at the hospital early Wednesday morning and were warmly greeted.  We were given an appointment for 2 PM.  A. Ketty rested in an inviting lounge area.  After lunch, we returned to the cancer center.  We had to wait for our appointment, but am sure glad we did! The doctor was warm, engaging, and honest.  After meeting with the doctor, A. Ketty had a scan and some blood work drawn. God-willing, she will start her first radiation treatment tomorrow (Thursday)! Quite possibly, she will start chemo on Friday (if not Friday, before the 5th day of radiation). All of this is great news and answer to the prayers of so many!

A. Ketty is a few feet away from me sound asleep.  As I was checking on her a little while ago, I asked her if she was still feeling peaceful.  She confirmed that she was.  She is eager to start treatment.  It is an absolute honor to be here with her… watching her God take care of her in such sweet ways.  Tonight we are staying at an AIM guesthouse.  At the dinner table, we were warmly greeted by a man named Ivan. He is from Uganda, knows New Hope and the Dangers family.   Such a small world and again a reminder of the active presence of our Lord.

Through Him,

Kimberly White

Thank you to so many who have responded with prayers and financial support. The road ahead continues to be a long journey for Aunt Ketty and her family. If you feel led to financially support her cancer treatment, please visit the donation page and designate your gift to the “Ketty Okoth Cancer Fund.” Thank you for walking this journey as a community.

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Walking along the road. One foot in front of the other.

Each step creating its own “one, two, three, four…”

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As I travel to church on a Sunday morning, the neighboring church sounds the commencement drums. “one & ah two & 3 e & ah four &…”

There seems to be a constant rhythm all around. Either with a person’s hands, feet, even our very heartbeats have our own rhythm.

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In some of the younger Primary classes, we have been entering into a time of teaching rhythm, recognizing rhythm, mimicking rhythms, and making our own. Making rhythms recognizable by certain cultural groups.

We learn one pattern at a time, remember the old one and then learn a new one.

We add each new rhythm to our mental filing systems and pull them out one by one.

Each rhythm is very different. Some involve hands only, others incorporate stomping or snapping, all having variations of loud and quiet noises.

Then, the crowning moment, when we put it all together – each rhythm in it’s own uniqueness becomes a part of a full, beautiful picture. What was once a separate, solo pattern now becomes mingled into a big pulsating drone that can make the very hairs on your neck to stand on end.

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As I look around the classroom, I see little faces who can quickly catch the new rhythm and some who struggle to pick it. Some who are tired from a rough night. Some who smile because they don’t know what else to do. Some who just need a voice to let them know that their gift – big or small – is still good. And He will use it.

The body of Christ comes with many different parts. Some are the feet – they stomp around; march to the beat. Some are the hands – clapping “one, two, three, & ah four.” Some are the fingers; snapping along, drumming their little quiet combination.

We can’t all be the hands, can’t all be the stomping feet. He asks us to be who we were made to be. In Him.

All parts joining together to be a part of His Body – each part working differently but together they are creating something beautiful.

Finding our rhythm in this place – on this journey. And letting it ring out Loud for Him.

 - Hannah Kusler, Children and Youth Music Ministry Coordinator

 

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It’s early Friday morning… a candle is lit close to me casting a shadow inside the darkened house.  The birds are singing in the day and as I look out the windows, the sun is beginning to break away the darkness outside.  It’s early in the morning.  And the day is just beginning.   A new day.  And a day that is known by my God.   It’s been a month full of… life.   And while there has been a lot of what has become normal life… seeing patients in the clinic, spending time with my family group, and living  life with those around me.  It has also been a month of journeying alongside two different individuals both facing serious medical situations.   One a young man; another a lady with a few more years under her belt.  One a student; the other a mom of 7 children.  One aware of the seriousness of her illness; the other more fully grasping it after being hospitalized.  Both so different and yet each journeying alongside with strong community and with a faith in Jesus.  Watching the community at New Hope stand and surround these two individuals has been an absolute beautiful thing.   And I’ve been able to hear directly from the lips of these two individuals the effect that the care, support, and love has had on them.  It has left me speechless.  And it has undoubtedly greatly impacted both of these individuals.

He's up and about now, just need to snap a new picture.

He’s up and about now, just need to snap a new picture.

Wizeye Joseph, a young man and a student at our secondary school, was diagnosed this last month with End Stage Kidney Disease.  His kidneys are currently failing him.  It’s a hard diagnosis to digest… especially when how you feel doesn’t match how sick you really are.  Besides headaches and occasional blurriness, Wizeye has felt fine.  His blood pressures, however have not been fine.  He has had blood pressures as high as 218/152 and just recently came down with typhoid.  A huge hit to an already struggling body.  His creatine, a test which measures kidney function, rose to a very hi level while he was in the hospital.  He was discharged a few days later, and a repeat test, showed an improvement in this level.  It is still higher than it was when he was diagnosed with kidney failure, but an improvement nonetheless.  He’ll have his creatine rechecked next month and is slated to go back to the nephrologist in Kampala at the end of this month.
ketty-okoth
Aunt Ketty Okoth was diagnosed with Poorly Differentiated Squamous Cell Carcinoma of her Esophagus last month.  It’s been a month of waiting for pathology results, obtaining all the necessary foundational medical tests, setting up radiation, and having treatment put on hold because of a broken machine.  There is one radiation machine in Uganda and it has been down for most of this week.   (Yes, ONE machine…. it’s a hard reality to swallow….)  It has been recommended for her to receive both radiation and chemotherapy concurrently. With a machine not working, a hesitancy here to do concurrent chemo and radiation, and a cancer that needs to be addressed urgently, it has been decided to head to Nairobi for treatment.  The plan is to leave New Hope on Monday and hop a bus Monday evening.  We should arrive Tuesday morning (after an all night drive) and are slated to be seen Tuesday afternoon at M P Shah Hospital.  God-willing, A. Ketty will begin treatment early next week.

Will you join us in praying for Wizeye and for A. Ketty?  For Wizeye’s mom and siblings?  For A. Ketty’s husband, Uncle Okoth and their seven children?  Thank you! Will you join us as we trust God in however He leads?  Yes, we are asking for a miracle… for each of these precious individuals.  I am asking that no matter what, their hearts, our hearts would be drawn closer to Him.

- Kimberly White, Kasana Children’s Centre nurse

Both of these cases are being supported through generous donations to the extraordinary medical needs fund. If you feel able and led to contribute, please donate here. Thank you for drawing together as a family sharing your prayers and resources to support Aunt Ketty and Wizeye.

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The impact of the Investment Year (IY) reaches into the future activities of the students who complete it. Whether they pursue additional studies through S5 and S6, eventually attend university, find a job, earn a certificate, or many other opportunities, these young adults see the fruit of the lessons they learned through the IY programme. A handful of them shared how their IY experiences continue to shape them as they step forward into jobs and further studies.

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“I am done with my senior six and I am now working with Hope Family. This is interesting for me to work with young lads. I am enjoying being a young father to them. I am looking forward to when I have my own children. It is really lovely to be a father, and can not imagine what a joy the fathers get from having sons and daughters. Meanwhile after my time at Hope Family I will continue my further studies to become an accountant.”

Perez:
“I am finally done with S6 and I am now doing a part time job with teams at New Hope Uganda. I like the job because it gives me a chance to meet and deal with new people. I am learning some new management skills, entrepreneurial, and dealing with human resources. It is so unfortunate that a job that I have come to love and enjoy of late I will have to leave in August and proceed with university.”

Joshua:Post IY
“I am done with my senior 6 and I am working in my store selling groceries and jewelry. I am happy that I am working and getting paid by my businesses. I am pursuing a medical course at university later this year.”

Zam Zam:
“I am currently working at the secondary school teaching senior 1 and 2 in the areas of chemistry and biology. I work in the school Tuesday through Friday, and on Mondays I work in our local hospital in Kiwoko. I am enjoying teaching and the work at the hospital. The Lord willing, I will attend university to study to be a doctor.”

Kenneth:
“Oh! After a long awaited time IY is finished. I learned what it means to have godly character and knowledge of Him. I have discovered that I am able to teach and because of that discovery I am attending HSC at Mulama SS. After SS I will attended university to become a secondary teacher. I am looking forward to God using me in this area and I want to bring glory to His name.”

Compiled by Caleb Mitchell, Early Adulthood Coordinator

Pursuing additional schooling after the IY year requires more financial support than available exclusively through an individual sponsorship. If you feel called to support the IY programme and/or university and course fees for our older children, please visit the Donation page.

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This year, with the restructuring of the Children’s Spiritual Development department, Biblical Manhood and Womanhood (BMW) days have also returned. During these times, all staff join the teachers and students for a time of teaching and activities centered on exploring the biblical expression and understanding of manhood and womanhood. Explore more about why a children’s center focuses on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood.

Our community here at New Hope Uganda seeks not only to help those who have been affected by fatherlessness, but also to transform the culture and society which causes it. This process must begin in the hearts of individuals.

This year, we are focusing on these ideas of Biblical Manhood and Womanhood on an organization-wide level. Most recently, that has been carried out through a “BMW Day” for all of the children enrolled in our primary and secondary schools at Kasana Children’s Centre.

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The youngest Primary students engage in a game of “blob tag” to emphasize relationship as the first pillar of manhood and womanhood.

For the secondary students, the morning of teaching built on a three-day seminar with various speakers a couple weeks back. The primary students learned the basics about the four pillars of Biblical Manhood and Womanhood. The first two pillars for both are Relationship and Image Bearing. The second two pillars of manhood are Stewardship and Headship, while the second two for womanhood are Helper and Life-Giver.

After the teaching time in the morning, the children split into two groups to work on different projects. The boys and male staff members carved hoe handles from sticks, while the girls and female staff members sewed simple headbands from fabric.

The staff and boys worked in the bush over on secondary side. Men-in-training whacked away at their hoe handles with pongas, whittling them down.

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Scattered throughout the church/primary school assembly area, the girls sat in groups of mixed ages each with a staff member or two. With quick and nimble fingers, the women-in-training executed their craft beautifully.

Towards the end of the day, coming rain led to an optional early-dismissal, but the young people carried with them physical reminders of the material they had begun to learn. And we pray God uses that day to make the truth of His designs for men and women sink deeply into their hearts.

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treasures

Many welcoming and excited smiles punctuated the celebration.

At the end of last month, we had a special time of celebrating in the Special Needs Department as we threw a party to praise God for the wonderful new classroom we have been blessed with here at Kasana.

Since the Special Needs Class began in 2011 the number of students has gradually increased from 6 to 14 and until this year we were all crammed into a couple of very small rooms in the Kasana clinic. It was always interesting for staff, children and visitors to manoeuvre around one another and the numerous pieces of equipment and wheelchairs in our classroom.

 

Enjoying the spacious mat area in the new classroom.

Enjoying the spacious mat area in the new classroom.

However, last year we were blessed with several substantial donations and many smaller ones that all made it possible for our very spacious and beautiful classroom (complete with a large indoor bathroom and store room, and a veranda with built-in seating) to be constructed. Unfortunately it did cost rather a lot more than we first hoped but we are definitely pleased with the quality of the building and it is such a great environment for the children to learn in and the staff to work in.

The guests of honour at our party were Uncle Howie and Uncle Kay who were visiting from Canada with some of their children. Their donation was the first one which kick-started the building project. Other guests included Uncle Jay and Auntie Vicki Dangers (whose daughter Julia attends sessions in our class,) Uncle Tony (our head of Childcare,) nurses and clinical officers from our clinic and two of our church elders. As well as the Treasures class children and their parents / carers, we had also invited 8 community children to come.

Praising God together in a favorite song from weekly music classes.

Praising God together in a favorite song from weekly music classes.

People began arriving at around 11am and the party started officially at about 12pm. Auntie Kate began by sharing with the guests how the Special Needs Programme had been renamed ‘Treasures in Jars of Clay’ and how it had begun back in 2009 when God had led her to come to Kasana to care for Hassan, our first special needs child. After sharing some of the children`s stories she gave several of the parents a chance to share their testimonies of how they and their children had been blessed by the programme; these stories were of great encouragement to everyone and we then all joined in praising God (lead by A.Hannah and some of the ‘Treasures Class.’) Several of the parents shared how their child`s disability had led them closer to God and one Father had even given his life to Christ as a result of the hardships he had faced caring for his severely disabled son.

treasures (2)Before lunch, two of our church elders came to the front to thank God for the classroom and all He had done through the programme. They also dedicated the building to God and prayed for many people to come to know Him as they came into contact with the children and staff of ‘Treasures In Jars of Clay.”

Everyone of course enjoyed the matooke, G-nut sauce, Rice, Meat, Chapatis and Sodas and they were so full that staff forgot to give out the cakes until over half the guests had left.

We praise God for a lovely day, a wonderful classroom, for all that He is doing through the programme and ultimately for his amazing, unconditional love for each and every one of us.

We will soon be writing another post to share with you our plans for the second half of the building project so keep an eye out and pray for God`s provision for us……..THANK YOU!

Kate Tolhurst, Special Needs Programme Coordinator

It takes a significant amount of time and resources to care for these children entrusted to us through the Treasures class – both living at Kasana and those we support who live with their families in the community. If you feel led to participate in this ministry, please consider a contribution to support their ongoing basic and medical care as well as enrichment and educational opportunities through the Treasures class.

 

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ketty okothGreetings from Uganda,

One of the great parts of being in family is how that family stands together in times of trouble. In our family we saw that first hand last year as we battled cancer. Our family, both biological and extended, really brought encouragement to our lives.

Yesterday was a time that brought back many memories of last year. We have a dear family working with us here in Kasana who are direct neighbors to us. I am not sure exactly how long they have served with New Hope Uganda, but it has been many years, as we found them here back in 2006. Their names are Ketty and Casmil Okoth and they have seven children.

We have all been praying for the past two weeks as we waited for the test results to return from a growth that has developed in Ketty’s throat. Yesterday the biopsy came back. It is cancer! To be specific, it is Poorly Differentiated Squamous Cell Carcinoma situated in the middle third of her esophagus. We are confident that God, the one who created us all is going to carry them through this. Though we don’t know the outcome exactly, we do know that He has promised to never leave us nor forsake us. As a cancer survivor myself I was blessed to be able to stand with the family last night as they brought the news to their children. After the tears and the many words spoken by Okoth, the father, and myself, Ketty herself began to share with the children where her hope is coming from. She spoke boldly to them about their need to trust God and not man. I was inspired by her faith and encouraged as this mother of seven shared with them how Jesus is and always has cared for her despite the trials she has faced in her life. She encouraged them to make Jesus their Lord and Savior especially in this time.

We are praying for God’s hand to work in her life, and we are asking for total healing and strength for them all. But we are also looking to see how we can be sure to get the best medical care for her as possible, thus why I am writing this. Here at New Hope we typically provide medical care for all our staff members though we often don’t have to fight a battle like this one. Financially right now we do not yet know what her treatment is going to cost, but we do know it will be exceptionally large even in African standards. We are looking for a way to cover Ketty’s salary as well as the extensive medical costs she will be facing. We want to look at all of the options which might include surgery and radiation in Kampala or possibly traveling to Kenya or even South Africa.

We are sending this out as a prayer request, that we as God’s global family could stand in prayer on behalf of our sister and her family. Please be in agreement with us for her healing as well as God’s provision. Donations toward this need can be made through New Hope Uganda to the Ketty Okoth Cancer fund. All donations will serve either medical expenses or the upkeep of her salary as we pass through this together. Any excess funds remaining when the battle is finished will go to our emergency medical fund.

In His service,

Geoffrey Britton

To support Aunt Ketty’s journey financially, please visit the Donations page and select your country to get started. Thank you!

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Praise God! We are in the middle of our first Investment Year (IY) internship, and I have so far learned many new things. Currently we are on a study of a book called “Do Hard Things.” The young people who wrote the book are encouraging us to get out of our “comfort zones” and face the world using God as our guide.
I was among those people who wanted to always be in my comfort zone but due to this book I’m ready to move and live in my “uncomfortable zones.”

 
My internship is at Friends Medical Centre with Dr. Ben and he is exposing me to the world of medicine and being a doctor. He does some minor operation at his clinic and he has given me opportunities to watch him work. At first it was scary to see a person being cut on his stomach or feet and stitched up after. But now I’m getting used to it and Dr. Ben is such a helping figure to me.

 
Through this time in IY, I have also learned to respect former New Hope Uganda children whom I grew up seeing as fellow colleagues and now they are staff members. Before I would show on the outside that I respected them but deep in my heart I couldn’t embrace it. At the IY house in Kampala, I have come to know that I have to respect U. Kasule and A. Imma [and all people whether in authority or not] just like any other New Hope Uganda staff. By God’s help and courage, I’m expecting to learn more this year.

Be blessed,

Musisi Jeremiah

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