2015 was an Amazing year for Wando International. We were able to meet the needs of more community members, bring on additional staff to serve the community and even launch additional projects. Through the ups and downs we came out on top with new experiences that have equipped us to make 2016 even better.
We brought in three new children: twins Marianna and Mercy, as well as Amina. Our first nurse, Hatika, who visits the children’s home twice a week to ensure they’re healthy.
Kalera Augustine is our new National Director, while Anthony and Rebecca are our new bookkeepers, who send regularl reports on Wando’s financial needs and standing. This ensures transparency and keeps our entire team accountable.
New Case Managers (social workers) Dinah, Carol, James and Ronald ensure children and families are tended to physically, spiritually and emotionally, while Child Advocacy Director Elizabeth Lozano works to ensure our child advocacy program is efficient and effective.
Our newest project is the Wando Coffee Initiative. We work with local coffee farmers to improve quality, efficiency and production of coffee beans. Our plan is to sell Ugandan coffee and use the proceeds to establish an orphanage and school in the farmers’ communities.
In 2015 we were given a rude awakening to the desperation of those in the communities we serve. One of our students was held for ransom and murdered. Our district is known for the largest number of child sacrifices in Uganda, which is what makes the work we do even more important. If we can help meet the very basic needs of families, they’re less likely to resort to desperate measures. We continue to hold the community, the family of the student we lost and the family of the fisherman who held the child for ransom in our prayers and ask that you do the same.
Looking forward to 2016 we see incredible opportunities in our future. God is moving and we believe our Child Advocacy 2.0 program is one of the key ways He is using Wando to make a difference in the communities we serve.
This updated program will allow advocates in the U.S. to easily communicate with case managers, teachers and students in Uganda. The children start school February 22, 2016, and Advocacy 2.0 will launch on March 1. With the addition of a new school in Lira, we’ll have an additional 300 students in our child advocacy system in need of prayers, support and encouragement.
We started Wando International with the hope of serving those in extreme poverty and bringing them the love of Christ. While it isn’t always easy, we see small miracles every day that remind us He is with us and touching lives every day!