We had our last day of work today. We kicked off the day with gardening, weeding and planting some plants around. The garden bed we had dug our previously was finished with plants and stones around the border. It looked really good and it was quite exciting to see all our hard work pay off and see the end result before we left.
Then we went to Crossing Cambodia for the last time. The kids were so wonderful. As soon as we walked in the kids were running up to us and calling our names, attaching themselves to a few of us. It was so cute. They really got into the songs and the drama and I can safely say the team was enjoying it just as much. When we split into the school groups, we taught each of them English again. It was really great to see how into learning the kids were and how good even the young ones were at English.
The evening was pretty relaxed and some of us stayed back after dinner for evening worship. That was amazing. The people at YWAM were so passionate and it was a really powerful to be a part of that worship. Our time at YWAM has been really good and saying goodbye while giving our donations today was really lovely. The experiences we had while being there will not be soon forgotten. Off to Siem Reap tomorrow. We are all really looking forward to all the rest of it.
Pancakes were on the menu this morning, yum! We all got into our Sunday best and walked up the road to Abundant Life Church, Wairaka.
We heard a sermon from a guest speaker and although it was at times confusing because of the translation we all thouroughly enjoyed it. We also performed a piece of our own as a a choir. We sang a short rendition of Amazing Grace to the congregation. The service was another lengthy one going for 2.5 hours. After church we stretched our legs and walked back to Suubi House for a nice lunch.
After we were all full we got ready to head over to Youth Support Uganda (YSU) to join in on their end of year celebrations. They performed dances and songs for us and then we performed Amazing Grace again for them.
Josh shared a quick devotion about the fruit of the vine and we all thouroughly enjoyed it. We had a friendly netball game after the devo, where the girls at YSU had a big comeback after halftime, when yours truly went off . The lovely people at YSU had organised a giant roast pig and other side dishes that all of us enjoyed; I think it was about three meals in one.
After this we quickly taught some of the youth how to kick the footy and with full belly's we started the trek home. It was a tiring but fulfilling day now we are getting ready for our final full day in Uganda.
-Tom & Monique
What a heckin day. Arising early from our slumber to ensure we were fresh faced and sunscreened at 7:30 to be picked up by the Adrift green machine, we snacked on some heartwarming homemade toast. Then, we awaited the arrival of the bus, and waited a little more, then waited a little more.
Finally, after arriving at 8:40 (which is 8 o'clock Africa time) we tumbled into the bus to begin our trek to the drop off site. After some serious 4WD action and getting stuck in the ditch our instructor Chris had to squeeze through what small opening of the door he could, push the bus which inevitably but hilariously landed him in a face plant in the mud. We enjoyed some rolex's (though not up to Juliet's standard, were still quite good), eggs, halfcakes, passionfruit juice, fruit for breakfast all the while signing our lives away. Then, off we go with our helmets and lifejackets on and paddles in hand. Down a slippery slope after group photos of teams "bogans" and "chicken wings", we mounted our rafts with Chris and Jackson there to guide us.
Surging with adrenaline we began - FORWARD PADDLE (then in the quieter but equally as authoritative and somewhat more fearful voice of Josh "fOrWaRd PaDdLe")- so it began. After warming up on the first two rapids of minor scales (and being reminded of the importance of paddling into the rapid with no uncertain terms), we were ready for an upgrade. Onto the grade 4 and 5 rapids, we paddled hard, forwards, backwards, everything in-between then in a flurry - GET DOWN (gEt DoWn!!) - we all ducked down into our boats and held on the the O.S line in attempts to stay in our boats.
After 7 rapids we lost only one swimmer (shoutout P.Diddy) who was graciously scooped up by one the the kayaking rescue team. With a big smile she rejoined the group and continues. We were treated to a magnificent spread for lunch, kebabs of different kinds, potato salad, veggie salad, rice, posho, beans, garlic bread and any beverage our hearts desired. "I'm so happy" exclaimed Dobbo on more than one occasion through a barbeque sauce grin! Then after a re-up of sunscreen we jumped on the boats for our final rapid and a cooling off swim, backflips and silly salmons into the Nile.
Finally we all enjoyed a truly warm shower (a rare Ugandan occurance!) then jumped in the bus eager to reunite with those who stayed back for paddleboarding instead, and chow down on some delicious frittata.
Exhausted, a little sunburnt, and buzzing, we returned to Suubi House a happy bunch of mzungus. On the flip-side, those who didn’t go rafting enjoyed a relaxing day, with lunch on the Nile and then a less-than-crazy-but-still-just-as-beautiful glide down the Nile on some standup paddle boards.
A great day all round!
Today was a restful day where we went to church at YWAM and chatted to some of the staff and students. We also stayed for lunch where we again got to hear some insightful life stories of some of the staff and students at YWAM. This was very encouraging to hear!
After lunch we went to the markets and relaxed in the cafe until we went back to YWAM for dinner. Despite the quieter day, we were all exhausted and are ready for a good night sleep in preparation for tomorrow’s big last day at YWAM.
Today was our last day at New Hope sanding and painting tables as well as creating Christmas decorations. After half a day of work and being covered in dirt, we headed back to the hotel to freshen up before having some pizza for lunch. This was nice to have some food other then rice!
We started the day at 4:45am to rain and disappointment, realising that our planned trip up Monkey Mountain to watch a beautiful sunrise was to be canceled. Despite this we at least got to have a bit more of a sleep-in which helped the team get the engery we needed for the big day ahead. In the morning we headed back to the Home of Hope for our second visit.
This special time consisited of the team bringing bubbles, balloons and a guitar for a fun-filled time with the children. Smiles were shining bright as ever and bonds were being formed between the children and students. We also had the privilege of helping out the staff with Christmas decorations around the facility. This was also a great time to get to know the staff and their faithfulness to the passion God has placed on them.
In the afternoon we then headed to the Village of Hope for an afternoon of Netball and Soccer which was very important for the team reputation, as this what many of the Village children were looking forward to. To make a long story short, the schoolies team pulled through getting the win in netball by just 1 point. But for soccer... let's just say we didnt have the home ground advantage losing by a multitude of goals and scoring none ourselves. The boys were a bit devo to say the least... Despite this, the day was still quite enjoyable. We then transitioned after dinner into our boys and girls time to add the cherry on top to a very successful day!
Jeanette sightings: 3
Cludeo Deaths: 2
Jo's babies: 2
Today started with some gumpy-ness as the neighbours celebrated someone’s life with continuous loud music all night. We went to the Village of Hope to paint the insides of houses 7 and 8 but they didn’t have enough paint so we didn’t get all that much done but got to spend time playing with the kids was great. We played keepings off throughout the village and clapping games. Then we had our favourite veggie samosas made by the delightful Juliette.
We ventured onto the bus before splitting into 2 groups, one to the female prison and male prison. The female prison had a church service where the women sang and Wilma (from YWAM) delivered a message before our team sang for and prayed for the women. The men’s prison held a church service in the corridor of the top story of the building. They all sang and danced before our very own Joel preached the house down and our team prayed for their needs.
We then went straight to Jinja town where we did more tourist shopping before going out for a good restaurant feed for dinner. - the boiz
Today Emily and I went to visit her World Vision sponsor child Vithry in the next district over. On the way we attended a reading camp set up by World Vision to increase the education levels of children in the area. We were greeted with games, songs and crafts by the kids. Next we stopped off at a small chicken farm where we spoke to a farmer who received training and was teaching others in his community to care for chickens to help create a better income for themselves. We then met with Vithry and her grandparents for lunch at the World Vision offices, where we played games and learnt about her family.
Today the rest of the squad went off to the YWAM base which began with morning chores. Following this, the team set off to New Hope to complete the sanding and painting of the tables. This also gave us a chance to check out the work completed the previous day. A well deserved lunch was provided at base which went down a treat.
Next we split the group into about half, one group stayed behind to cut cardboard into palm trees. This was for YWAM’s Christmas decorations for their upcoming performance. The other went to Crossing Cambodia and did maths activities. This included the use of counters to show their understanding of numbers and for the older children they completed activities that involved addition and subtraction. The day finished with a meal at the base and chill time at the hotel.
(Editor's note: We haven't forgotten Day 11! On the way :) )
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