Luwero Newsletter  December 2020

Luwero Newsletter December 2020

Welcome to the Christmas edition of our Luwero Newsletter.  As Christmas approaches, we are very aware of the impact that COVID-19 will have on our celebrations, both here and in Uganda.  However, folk here and at Luwero are determined to celebrate the birth of Jesus despite the restrictions in place

Christmas Worship in Luwero

Covid-19 restrictions mean that services cannot be held after 6 pm because of curfew.  Churches at Luwero are able to meet; numbers are limited to 70 people per service with protective measures in place.  Gabriel informs us that this limit has been increased from 70 to 200 provided social distancing can be maintained.  The church at Luwero can easily accommodate that number, even with restrictions.

The Christmas programme has been curtailed this year because of the coronavirus restrictions.

Programme    23rd December   –        a Carol Service is planned in the church

                         25th December   –      one Christmas Day service will be held

                         26th December   –      Christmas gifts will be distributed throughout the local community to orphans and needy families

                         31st December    –     a day of prayer 9 am to 6 pm

                         1st January            –   between 3 and 6 pm church members and local villages will be visited for evangelistic outreach

The Kijjambus

The Kijjambu family are all well.  Gabriella has recovered well from her recent health problems.  She received good treatment initially from the main hospital in Kampala and then at Kiwoko hospital, about 10 miles away from Luwero.

         Priscilla and her 3 baby sisters

Please remember Gabriel, Deborah, Priscilla and the babies in your prayers.

COVID-19

There have been a number of coronavirus cases in the Luwero area with a few reported deaths.  At the time of writing there have been 22,499 cases reported and 206 deaths across Uganda. Lockdown restrictions still apply across the country.  Numbers continue to grow.  Funds continue to be sent to Gabriel to enable relief to be given to staff and pupils at the projects as well as the needs of local people with whom Gabriel has contact.  We are indebted to those who continue to support the work at Luwero both prayerfully and practically.

 

School News

The first  term for P7, S4 and  S6 pupils ended on 18th December; exams will be taken next March/April.  It was anticipated that a full return to school would take place on Monday 11th January, however this has been delayed until 18th January because of elections next year.

 

 

Farm News

Crops have been growing well;

  • maize was planted recently following a period of rain
  • coffee was harvested
  • the cows have produced 3 calves.

We hope that these successes continue, as the farm is crucial to the long-term sustainability of the projects.

 

National Elections

National elections take place on 14th January 2021.  Such events can often be accompanied with violence and problems: pray for peaceful elections and ongoing stable government in the country.

 

2021 Calendars and Gabriel’s Favourite Hymns

Final call for Luwero 2021 calendars and Gabriel’s Favourite Hymns CD for delivery prior to Christmas.  Small desk calendars £5 and A4 wall calendars £9..  Copies may be ordered by email (mailto:[email protected]).  Copies of Gabriel’s CD are £8 and may be ordered in the same way as calendars.

 

Knowing and Doing

Printing of the Luganda translation of Knowing & Doing by John McQuoid is expected during January 2021: we are working with the publishers to finalise outstanding issues.

 

 

 

Prayer Points

We ask that you continue praying for following:

  • everyone involved in arranging Christmas services and celebrations at the projects and within Kiryanyonza,
  • the Kijjambu family and the 3 babies in particular as they grow stronger,
  • all the children and their families as they come together at this time of year
  • the pupils, and their return to school after the Christmas break,
  • the continuing success of crops and livestock at the farm,
  • a peaceful and civilised national election, free from violence and disruption,
  • further afield in Uganda, as people continue to cope with the effects of COVID-19 and the negative impact it is having on their lives.

Child Sponsorship and Coronavirus

At the time of writing Uganda has 13,568 reported cases of coronavirus and 117 deaths. There has been a steady increase in both sets of figures since mid-August. The accuracy of these figures cannot be verified.

During these past few months, Gabriel has been in contact with as many sponsored pupils as possible. He has facilitated practical support such as visiting children, providing maize and other foods to families, advising on school work able to be done at home and provided financial assistance to families and teachers where needs exist. Where direct contact has not been possible, financial gifts sent by MoneyGram via mobile phones have been made. Your gifts have made all of these things possible.

A couple of weeks ago the Ugandan government allowed pupils in P7, S4 and S6 to return to school. This enabled 38, 41 and 7 pupils respectively to return in these three school years. Pupils in these years are known as ‘finalists’ since they are in their final year of education before moving on. Normally these pupils would sit their annual school exams in November. These exams have however been delayed until April/May next year so that pupils can complete the curriculum for the school year. All sponsored children in these years have returned to school. The remainder of children in all other classes are scheduled to return to school in January 2021, their school year having been delayed by 12 months. Hopefully these plans will be able to materialise.

To allow the return to school, full coronavirus protection measures have been put in place in accordance with government guidelines.  Additionally, the authorities have instructed that a boundary wall be built to ensure that pupils and the public are kept separate at the secondary school.  Work has commenced building the wall.  In the light of the steps taken and being taken the government has granted the schools a licence to operate.

Once the schools return, we will be able to assess any specific concerns regarding sponsored children and will advise you accordingly.

Gabriel will arrange to supervise the distribution of Christmas gifts to sponsored children.  The normal arrangements of sending a suggested £10.00 donation for your sponsored child still apply.

Payment can be made in a variety of ways including

  • cheques made out in favour of Luwero Community Projects Ltd and sent to Krysia Cruickshank, Child Sponsorship Coordinator,
  • electronic transfer via mobile banking or direct debit to our bank account
    • (RBS, sort code 83-16-13,
    • account number 00617368,
    • account name Luwero Community Projects Limited)
  • giving on-line via Virgin Money Giving through this website.

Whichever route you chose please ensure your gift is clearly marked for your named sponsored child.

Thank you again for your prayerful and practical support for the work at Luwero.

2021 Calendars

2021 Calendars

We’d like to finalise calendar orders this weekend to ensure delivery before Christmas.  If you’d like to order any calendars just for yourself, please let me know and I’ll arrange for them to be sent to you. You’ll recall large ones are £9 and small ones are £5.

Every blessing to you.

Ernie

OCTOBER NEWSLETTER

OCTOBER NEWSLETTER

Welcome to the October edition of our Luwero Newsletter.  The Projects, and indeed all of Uganda, continue to be impacted by the effects of COVID-19.  However, folk at Luwero and Kiryanyonza are continuing to try to live as normally as possible and ask that we continue praying for them.

The Kijjambus

On 10th September the Kijjambu family doubled in size when Deborah gave birth to girl triplets.  All three babies were born healthy, although their birth weights were understandably light (between 1.7 and 2.5 kilos).  After a couple of weeks being cared for in hospital, Deborah and all three girls were discharged to return home.  The names of the babies are Gabriella Adams Kijjambu, Peggy Bayton Kijjambu and Debbie Phillips Kijjambu.

There is no doubt that it will be a busy house as the girls make their presence felt.

Please remember Gabriel, Deborah, Priscilla and the babies in your prayers as they adjust to family life.  

COVID-19

Uganda continues to be in lockdown.  At the time of writing reported cases of COVID-19 were approximately 9,500 with 85 deaths.  It is believed that the number of reported cases is lower than the actual number of cases, due to limited testing facilities and reporting systems.  Since August the number of daily cases has increased substantially.

Entebbe airport re-opened for business on 1st October.  The curfew that was imposed between 9.00 pm and 6.00 am still applies across the country.  Gatherings of more than five people are prohibited and everyone over the age of 6 must wear a facemask in public.  Some relaxation of shops reopening and travel restrictions has taken place.

Funds continue to be sent to Gabriel to enable relief to be given to staff and pupils at the projects as well as the needs of local people with whom Gabriel has contact. We are indebted to those who continue to support the work at Luwero both prayerfully and practically.

 

School News

The Ugandan government has allowed schools to open for pupils in P7, S4, and S6 as long as they observe the Corona precautions.  All the pupils will be boarding. The reopening of schools on a more general basis is unlikely to happen until January 2021.  This means that the schools at Luwero will remain closed for most pupils for the foreseeable future.

The pictures below show walls being constructed to prevent members of the public from entering the Project schools easily.  This was done to comply with part of the government’s new Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).  An inspection was conducted in the Project schools to verify that the SOPs had been put in place and certificates of compliance were granted to operate as a boarding school until further notice.  A lot has been achieved in a short time, but a lot of challenges remain.  The pupils have lost motivation in studying during this situation, the teachers had gone into other businesses since the lockdown, and the running costs of managing small numbers of pupils is relatively expensive.

2021 Calendars

Luwero calendars for 2021 are now available for purchase.  Prices are the same as last year – small desk calendars £5.00 and larger A4-size wall calendars £9.00. Copies may be ordered by email (mailto:[email protected]m), our website, by post or in some cases your local church representative.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Knowing and Doing

The book Knowing and Doing by John McQuoid has been translated into Luganda.  The book has been translated into almost 50 languages and has sold almost 1 million copies worldwide.  The Luganda edition will be the latest version of this valuable Christian resource and we anticipate ordering 2,000 copies.  The translation work had been undertaken by a small team of people at Luwero and has been largely a LCP project.

 

 

‘Gabriel’s Favourite Hymns’

Copies of Gabriel’s CD, ‘Gabriel’s Favourite Hymns’, priced £8.00 per copy, are also available and may be ordered in the same way as calendars.

 

Prayer Points

Please pray for all at the projects, and indeed further afield in Uganda, as they continue to cope with the effects of COVID-19 and the negative impact it is having on their lives.  Please also pray for those “finalist” pupils who have returned to school and are trying to concentrate on their studies whilst coping with a very different “normal”.

August Newsletter

August Newsletter

Welcome to the August edition of our Luwero Newsletter.  The Projects, and indeed all of Uganda, continue to be impacted by the affects of COVID-19.  However, folk at Luwero and Kiryanyonza are continuing to try to live as normally as possible and I have a lot of news to share with you.

The Kijjambus

Gabriel, Deborah and Priscilla are all well. However, Deborah’s health recently gave some cause for concern and she spent 10 days in hospital.  I am happy to inform you that she has since been discharged and Gabriel advises us that she is well. Her babies, thought to be triplets, are due in September. We continue to pray for their safe arrival and her continued good health.

 

 

 

COVID-19

Uganda is still in lockdown.  At the time of writing there have been just over 1,200 reported cases of COVID-19 and 5 deaths.  Whilst there has been some easing of lockdown restrictions, school pupils and staff have not returned and churches cannot hold services.  Some shops have been allowed to reopen, public transport is now operating on a limited basis, private vehicles are limited to 4 occupants per vehicle and there remains a curfew in place between 9.00 pm and 6.00 am.

Gabriel is continuing to meet the needs of local people facing food shortages or financial hardship due to loss of employment.  The funding of sponsored children is continuing and is happening indirectly where they have moved out of the Projects and relocated to their villages.  The Ugandan government is expected to make further announcements regarding lockdown restrictions next month.

School News

With the continuing ban on schools returning, Gabriel is directing his efforts towards retaining teaching staff so that the schools are fully staffed upon resumption.  Similarly, he is intent on maintaining pupil numbers so that as many as possible return in January.   

Work to complete the boys and girls dormitory blocks at the secondary school will restart soon.  The blocks are both complete at ground floor level and are inhabited by pupils when school is in session.  The remaining work involves the completion of the upper floors to increase their capacity and allow for more living space for the pupils.

Farm News

Purchasing additional land to extend the farm remains a priority for the project.  More land means more crops and less need to buy in food to feed the staff and pupils at the Projects.  A number of potential sites have been identified recently and you will be kept abreast of developments once information becomes available.

 

Uganda Elections

Government elections are scheduled for January 2021 in Uganda.  The country has been blessed with political and social stability in recent times and we pray that this continues during the election period, particularly since public meetings may not be allowed.  The ability to receive foreign visitors and the desire of visitors to go to Uganda depends heavily on political stability.

‘Gabriel’s Favourite Hymns’

Copies of Gabriel’s CD ‘Gabriel’s Favourite Hymns’ are still available. They have been a great source of blessing by many and can be obtained via our website.

 

 

Luwero Calendars

In October Luwero calendars for 2021 will become available for purchase. Details will be included in our next newsletter.

Postscript

The schools may be closed because of COVID-19 but, just to remind us of the joy and innocence that usually denotes the ethos of the schools in the Project, I have included a short video of the primary school children in action.