Just a quick FYI before getting started.. Thanks to YOU ALL we are 100% pledged for the electricity project! Just waiting for checks to come in at CTEN. Thank you SO MUCH! This is an incredible lasting impact that Arkansas (and an awesome NGO in Arizona) have brought to Bombo, Uganda! WAHOO!
1. I know the name of my new place and how to direct a boda to reach! At first I had to give boda drivers awfully vague directions or sometimes even direct them as we drove (a horrible technique because they might request for more money at the end of the trip because “I did not know it was far!”). However, a guy finally told me a mayor used to live in this area. He was called “Sebaggala” and so people called this side the “side of Sebaggala”. Now the bodas know where to go and I can get myself a fair price!
2. A Fair Price! Because I have to bargain my boda rides, I am now learning the new fair prices for this side! It is actually on my old route, just closer to the city. So I just get to knock off about 500-1,000 Ugandan shillings per ride (.20-.40 cents). Which actually makes a big difference when added up! The value of that .20-.40 cents is pretty good over time. (by the way, speaking Luganda has also really helped me with fair prices! Sometimes I don’t even have to bargain the guy down because he instantly gives me the fair price… then he quickly asks “Where are you studying Luganda?!”
3. I have already found a short cut for daily use! I love finding the little dirt paths that Ugandans have used over time… I took this snap today as I walked down to the bypass for my taxi ride! It really makes me feel so “legit” and it gives me a “homey” feeling when I use these short cuts with all the other Ugandans. (yes, other Ugandans use this path even though I wasn’t following one today..)
All in all, I am happy to be in my new place. It is smaller than the old place, but it is nice and the perfect little home for me. There are several benefits that I don’t need to go into listing at the moment. It is actually an independent home inside of a compound with a triplex. And our landlady lives over the gate as our neighbor (super convenient). The compound is so beautiful, I’m sure my mother and Cindy Ellis would approve! Here are a few beautiful snaps!
A Short Break From Luganda...
Today I taught on Jesus using the small boy’s loaves and fishes to feed the 5,000 men and their families. I focused on how Jesus loves us and cares about our needs. We also talked about how even though maybe we are young and don’t have much, if we are faithful to God with the little that we have, God can use it to do big things! They boys LOVED having the construction paper fish and loaves passed around… So much fun. J They started complaining when Geof ran out of the few… but they rejoiced when Jesus multiplied them and Geof pulled so many more out of the bag! It was such a blast being with them all today. Those boys just grab a hold of my heart, people!
First Ever API Home School Awards!!!
I decided to give two different types of awards at the ceremony. We had awards for academic performance and also awards for good character. I looked at exam scores for each class the high scores for each subject area were awarded a certificate, big chocolate bar, and a special pencil. The top overall scores for the class (an average of all subject areas) was awarded a certificate, a mug, and a “coupon” for a rolex and soda for lunch. Google “rolex in Uganda”. It is a super yummy street food with a fried dough wrapped around some fried eggs! Ocassionally with tomatoes, cabbage, even avocado sometimes! I super special treat for the boys.
We also had the teachers award a “Hardest Worker” and “Best friend” award for each of their classes. Those 6 students received a chocolate bar after their teachers gave a small speech on why they chose that student to receive the award.
Then, the final awards were the “Overall Best Student” voted by peers, and the “Overall Best Student” voted by teachers. They received the certificate, mug, and rolex/soda coupon!
THANK YOU for those of you who give to support the ministry. Some people have recently joined the monthly support team and it made it possible to purchase these special gifts for the students. They were so thrilled! Sweet Juma said “Auntie Lauren, thank you for the gifts.” And I saw several boys writing letters to their sponsors about their certificates and gifts they earned! They were SO ENCOURAGED! THANK YOU!
Students and gifts getting organized… then the aunties, uncles, and parents arrived!
FIRST…..My favorite snaps from the day!
Jovia is a community student whose father is one of our personal boda drivers. They have also begun attending the church on Sundays. She received the Best Friend Award from her teacher. After Teacher Perusi spoke about why she gave Jovia the award, her father came up, shook Jovia's hand, and wanted to get a picture with her. He was so proud. It was a great moment! Look at her cute smirk!
Juma is one of our best all around students. He received several certificates… He was the High Score for Math in his class, was selected as Hardest Worker by his teacher, and his peers voted him the Best Overall Student. I love seeing Momma Joy and her big smile in the background of this one!