Christmas Newsletter, 2007

It has been great having friends and family members, from far and wide, share with us the important events that occurred in their lives during the past year.  A big thank you for the e-mails, cards, and letters we have received during the last few weeks.   Once again, if anyone has any free calendars to spare, we would love to have new 2008 ones.  (We still have plenty of the old calendars that were sent to us last year.)

Bus Trip to Lake Mburo National Park

Just after last month’s newsletter, we took 60 children plus 26 staff on a bus trip to Lake Mburo National Park , about one and a half hours from Masaka.  One of our Canadian volunteers, Susy Loewen, paid for hiring the coach bus, and Blumenort Vacation Bible School covered the remainder of the costs, which included the food, sodas, boat ride, and entrance fees for the adults.   We were able to get free admission for all the children from the Ugandan Wildlife Authority.  This trip was an experience that the children will never forget.   Most of the staff had never been to this park either.

Some of the highlights of the trip included the boat trip on Lake Mburo to see the school of hippos in the water, the picnic, the drive through the park to see wild animals like zebras and wort hogs, the games played near the lake, and the bus ride itself.   These were all new experiences and the children returned home at night full of memories (which they talked about for weeks afterwards) and full of smiles of delight at what they had seen and experienced.

Canadian Volunteers

Our two Canadian Volunteers, Susy and Ashley, returned to Canada this past week, with many fond memories of their experiences working with the children.   These young ladies truly ventured out of their comfort zone to come here to join us.  They made a difference in the lives of our children.   We have now welcomed our close friends, Walter and Marilyn Dyck, plus their four boys, from southern Manitoba .   They will be here for two months.

Already Walter is at home driving the truck back and forth the 25 miles to the property at

Lubumba Village from our home here in Soweto , Masaka.   He has been helping with the completions of the housing for Family #2, and he and two of his sons have also helped to get the old stove out of the kitchen at the Family #1 site.  A new stove is now under construction.  The new stove is being built by a professional who knows what he is doing.  Walter and the two boys will also be helping with the construction of the new temporary, four-classroom school building. Construction will begin this week.

Marilyn and their younger boys have started reading with the children at both our sites.  Our children are now out of school for two months so they will appreciate having people who come to read to them.  Marilyn worked hard at compiling two big plastic containers of books with donations from some book stores in Manitoba and from individuals.  There is one tub of books for each family.

EWCV Hospitality Center and Family #3

Walter and Marilyn are staying down at the EWCV Hospitality Center with hosts Rev. Christopher Muwonge and his wife, Harriet.  We have also taken into this Hospitality Center four children who make up the beginning of Family #3.   The fourth child, eight-year-old Malike, just came to us last evening.   Our Social Worker, Allan, brought us a letter from the Masaka Probation Officer, Rita, who asked us to take in Malike immediately because he had been abandoned by his auntie.   The little boy has been staying down at the police station this past week, sleeping under the front counter and eating one meal per day, the same as the prisoners.  Not great food we are told.   He is an orphaned child who was living with his auntie.   A week ago he came home from school only to find the house locked.  Nobody knew where his aunt had gone.  Malike moved to the streets of Kinoni and the police quickly took him in and he was brought to the policed in Masaka.   We had a meeting and decided, once more, to step out in faith and bring him here along with the other three children with Family #3.

Child Sponsorship

You might wish to check out our website –  www.eagleswingschildrensvillage.com –  to see the children that we have listed for sponsorship, as well as several staff who need monthly sponsorship.  We also now need a sponsor for little Malike, at $35 CAD per month.  He will be placed on the website this coming week, good Lord willing.  We will be purchasing a bed, mattress, sheets, blanket, clothing, medical care, and food for him.  If you are interested in making a difference in Malike’s life, please phone Harry and Francie Humby in Winnipeg at:  204-257-2483 or email them at f_humby@nullhotmail.com,  and let us know here at our own e-mail address.   If you call them, they will record all your information and then we won’t even need to place Malike on the website.  (We will send you his picture and a write-up.)

We have children waiting to come into our care at EWCV, but we cannot move forward without the support of sponsors who decide to walk with us in our attempt to make a difference in the lives of vulnerable and needy children, some of whom are living with AIDS.

With God’s help, we will be celebrating the birth of Jesus at the property with all the children in our care – Families 1, 2, and 3 – together.  Our families are growing quickly.  Family #2 is preparing to move later this week to their new homes at our property (25 miles away from our home here in Masaka Town ).   We are trying to complete their housing and will see this week if things are far enough advanced for them to move.   We have all been praying for this move.

Please pray for us as we will receive more volunteers next week from Canada .  They will be with us during the holiday season.  There is much to be done with the completion of construction for the children’s housing.  There is also the temporary school structure to be built.  We need to have a well dug so that we can be self-sufficient with our supply of water for the children.  Two chicken coops will be constructed early in the New Year, as well as a corral for cows.   We have received funding for one cow thus far and appreciate every donation made to EWCV for the children.

Each child will receive a gift of casual clothing for Christmas plus, in the New Year, a chicken coop built for each family will be built from the donations of the sponsors.  The children will learn how to look after chickens that will provide both eggs and meat to eat.    Thank you, Sponsors, for helping our children and staff this past year and for committing to assist them again this coming year.   May God bless you abundantly.

Our new House Parents have been hired for Family #3 and will begin with an orientation week on January 21st, 2008.   We are still needing sponsorship for the House Parents for Family #2 who are still on the website and will be needing staff sponsorship for the new House Parents for Family #3.  We will be having a staff retreat for EWCV staff on the weekend of January 31st to February 3rd at Kako Prayer Mountain with Kenneth Rwego of Compassion Uganda acting as one of the guest speakers and moderator for the weekend.   This will take place during the end of the time that the children will be visiting for one month at the former guardian’s home in the villages.   This will also be a time for our staff to have much deserved holidays.  The children will begin back to school in their newly constructed temporary school building on February 7th after our staff retreat.

Please pray for speedy healing now for Rev. Christopher’s Muwonge’s wife, Harriet, as she has undergone a four hour operation this morning in a hospital in Kampala .

This Christmas, may God open our hearts to His love…our minds to His wonders…our ears to His voice…our lives to His presence.   Have A Blessed Christmas.

1 John 4:10