Friday, April 23, 2010

Baby Brenda and other stories...

On Tuesday this week Ivan and I took baby Brenda to the hospital in Jinja to try to get her more TB medication before it ran out. We had been referred to the main hospital in Jinja, so went there... but after some time of waiting, we were told to take her instead to the children's hospital... So, to the children's hospital we went... and waited and waited for 3 long hours. When we finally got in to see the doctor he told us to go home and come back the following day as they only treated TB patients on Wednesdays. I wondered why no one else at the hospital seemed to know that who could have sent us home earlier that day! So the next day, Wednesday we returned, waited for another few hours, finally saw the doctor, and then waited again for the prescription only to find out (after 5 hours of waiting), that the hospital was all out of TB medication and for us to come back on Friday to get it! Africa!!!
So Friday came and I went back to the hospital, and the service was much quicker (only 2 hours this time), but at least i didn't have to bring the baby which was good. So, we're set for 2 more weeks of medication... I only hope and pray that the next time we have to get more medication that it won't have to take 3 days to do it! Especially seeing as Brenda has to take the medication for 6 months. I can't complain though, and i don't complain as I was not the only person waiting at the hospital... there were many, many women and children there waiting just as long as I was, and I'm sure many had come from distant villages and this was their only option. It made me to be able to relate just a little bit to what these women face all the time here when their children get sick.

Today is Saturday and i went to visit Emmanuel at his mom's place in Wairaka... correction, not HER place, but the orphanage she volunteers and lives at full time!!! What an incredible woman of God that lady is! She really just shines with the light of Jesus! I thank God for such examples of beauty on this earth.
Rays of Hope bought some necklaces both from Emma's mom (Rebekah) as well as Emma's aunt (Betty) to help them out a bit since they have no income coming in and Emma still needs to be transported back and forth to the clinic every couple of days.
I love using the necklaces to raise funds for Rays of Hope because it really is a way to help people here as well. I was able to buy some from a church youth group today to help with their ministry and have agreed to also buy some from a lady by the name of Sarah who is struggling to raise her children alone. Sarah told us that her husband left for Juba, Sudan some time ago to do business but has stopped calling and hasn't returned. Apparently this is a common occurrence with men going to Juba for business... either they get killed in the process or find a new wife and another life there. We asked her what she does to survive and to feed her 4 children. She told us that she has a small shop but since her husband hasn't returned they have not been doing well and there are less and less things in her shop to sell. So, Sarah makes necklaces in hopes of finding market to supplement her small income in the shop. Sarah told us that her oldest of the four kids is 9 years and the youngest just 6 months. I hope to visit her home in the weeks to come.
Mariam, the other village lady i sometimes buy necklaces from comes by every now and again. It is good to see her doing better than when we first met her. We have encouraged her to use the money she has made from the necklaces we've bought from her to expand her business in selling vegetables and so not to depend entirely on the necklaces themselves. She can always make necklaces as she sits at her booth selling vegetables. Mariam thought it was a good idea to try to do both.
Rosemary is a lady who lives in Jinja town and rents a shop. She is also a supplier of our necklaces, and just last month told me she didn't know how she would have paid her bills if we hadn't bought what we did at that time when i had to send a shipment of them to Canada. She gave the glory to God, as it is due him! I know i always mention this but I am continually amazed, day after day, at how God provides for His people here... When all looks hopeless, God will make a way for these people so close to his heart!
Well, thanks for reading my ramblings.
I love Uganda... hope many of you can come here one day as well, and fall in love with it for yourselves!
Until next time,


  1. Thanks for the update, Karen! It's good to hear about God's goodness and what you've been up to. God bless.

  2. Can I print this blog would love to let all the girls who bought necklaces read this so proud to be related to someone like you!

  3. Hi Connie! You are so sweet... thank you! Yes, feel free to print it off and give it to anyone you want!