Monday, September 14, 2009

My Chip In, and other fabulouse news..

I have just officially started fundraising for my Christmas trip to Uganda! There's a lot of things I want to accomplish on this trip, but the main one is celebrating Christmas day. I have always had an amazing Christmas growing up. Even when I was young, I would take family over the gifts(and yes I did love the gifts, and there were plenty) and ofcourse that deliciouse Christmas turkey. It was always a memorable day filled with laughs and togtherness. When I was visiting Uganda this June, I came to learn that a lot of the kids dread Christmas. The children who are living with relatives are often 'overworked' on Christmas forced to prepare the perfect day for everyone else. Gifts are not a big part of the day, as no one can really afford them- but it is the day for the family to not work and spend it together. Having no family can make this a very sad day.

After I left Uganda, I knew I had to return. It was especially hard for the first two months being back home. I miss them so much, and just feel almost useless over here. Continuing to fundraise for the projects really helps keep my mind in gear. My plan is to return to Uganda for 2-3 weeks this Christmas. Not only do I plan on having a Christmas celebration for the students, but during the rest of my time there I will be able to check up on the washroom fund(which is $959 away from being completed!) as well as run a "day camp" as the kids will not be in school during my visit. The day camp will basically be run everyday for the 2 week I am there. This will include organized sport games, arts and crafts, tutoring(espeically in reading and english), etc. If everything is stable, I will also be able to visit Apac. Security is an issue and it can change at any moment, but the peace they have been experiencing has been for quite some time now. I'm really hoping to be able to make it up there on this visit.

My family is sad that they won't be spending this Christmas with me, but understand that providing Christmas to these kids is a good reason for me to not be there! My mom, who came with me to Uganda really understands how much it would mean to the kids, and is pushing me to go. She is donating half of my airline ticket as my Christmas gift(!!!) It is up to me to raise the other half as well as the cost of each extra luggage I am bringing(around $25 each) The luggages will all be filled with gifts for the kids and I am not sure how many extras I will need just yet.

Please consider chiping'in, which you can do so at the top right hand corner of this page! Thank you!!


gophercheeks said...

That is awesome news!! Can I send you some card games, small board games, craft supplies, frisbees, balls, gum, candy, books in english?

What do you need for your day camps?

Also would I be able to send something for Sydla? I still haven't heard anything about Wilbrod. Is he still in the program?

Kate said...

I have a list of things I want to bring, which I will post up asap. Big need for craft suppplies as well as books. (Frisbees are great too!)

Also, i'm not sure if you saw the video of Sydla but i'm sure you'll be able to spot her out! She wore the outfit you gave her everyday while I was there!

I am waiting for the list of kids who have returned from school. With the recent rioting some of stayed home, but Hellen let me know that most have returned. I have a letter from Wilbrod for you which I will be sending out asap! I am just waiting on pictures, which is taking long as they no longer have a camera. Nothing can ever go too smoothly lol!

Nikki said...

Good luck fundraising! As you know, I am fundraising my own trip and money is super tight... I wish I could donate but maybe next time!

Are we as sponsors able to send items to you to give as gifts to our kids? Would love to get my girls something. I have a few ideas, but would love to know what you would suggest... better to buy something here and give it to your, or send money and have you get something there for them? Or are we not sending gifts as all the kids won't get one? Not sure- let me know your thoughts.
HEY- you will be with my Ugandan kids for Christmas and I will be with your Dominican sponsor kids for Christmas :)

Kate said...

I want to give each child a wish bag(large ziplock filled with gifts, sure you know exactely what I mean lol)Rebecca told me a few hours before I was leaving, how she really wanted a pair of underwear, she had none. So that would be a great thing to give her. i'm thinking along the lines of a doll as I got many request from her classmates for one, but she is more of a 'tomboy' and really loved to draw. Coloring book and pencil crayons/ jump rope may be a good?

Btw, did you get to see these videos from CUS? You can spot Rebecca and Kate in them briefly. but it so sums up how they are :)

You can spot Kate in this one

Rebecca is ofcoure the one holding the baby..

I will deffinetly have to send you some things for 'my' family! I was thinking of sending a card, books, and some other little things, and then giving you money to buy something which the family can us. Would this work? I know you'll be very busy.

Also, when you where there did you see the Haitian class..infront of the old boys club?I was going through photos and just thinking about them and if they could use any long term help.

Nikki said...

I am going to go watch the videos now :)

I can definitely do that! The family's biggest need is food, so I will buy that with the money. And can definitely deliver gifts for you. I had planned on going to each house anyways, to get the kids to write a letter to their sponsors, so I will deliver your stuff when I visit to have them write you a letter.

I will go shopping for the girls and mail it to you when it is ready! I will definitely get them underwear. I did send some several months ago, but I think the package never arrived. Sending it through you will be much better!

And I did visit the Haitian school once or twice, but didn't really have any involvement with it, so I am not sure how it is doing. I would love to find out though... will put that on my list of things to check into in December!

Helping Africa said...

Gophercheeks, Yes Wilbrod is still at the school. I saw him in a video.
He's wearing the same shirt as in the group photo when he was sponsored.