Summer 2018
Joshua Interview
Child Spotlight: Joshua

Joshua and HEED have come a long way together. Many of you have been involved since our early years, too, and have seen God grow the ministry with your support. 

On a mission trip in 2005, Joshua was one of the first 17 children I met whose need led to the founding of HEED Uganda. Kids like Joshua remind me where we started, and why it matters that we did. 

Joshua journeyed with HEED from a small office space in the school I came to serve in 2005 to a proper boarding school funded through our sponsorship program. Then, several years later when our own village schools were established, he moved back to his home village to attend our new school from home. Kids no longer had to leave the village to get an education. The school has clean water and a school nurse, and hope has taken root.

Joshua is one of our pioneer kids, and will graduate from high school this year-the first ever in his family. He's a leader, serves in the church, and finds ways to help HEED in his community. We're proud of you, Joshua!

From 17 kids to nearly 500. Joshua has watched it all happen!
April Mission Trip

A Kyaktanga Kind of Welcome!
A Kyakitanga kind of welcome!

By Stephanie Evans

If you would have told me 5 years ago that I would go to Uganda, I would have never believed you. I would have given you a dozen reasons why I couldn't go. But God's ways are different than ours.

In 2014, my daughter Kate and two of her friends started raising money for HEED. They held fundraising events like "Looms n' Lemonade," craft and bake sales and even an Outdoor Movie and Game Night. With the help of our Shoreline community, they raised over $15,000 and collected everything from band aids to books and school supplies to shoes.

We started planning our trip to Uganda in September of 2017. I made sure I dotted every "i" and crossed every "t" and on April 1, 2018, Sydney and Kate and I left with a group of 13, including other Shoreline moms and daughters. My biggest fears were the long plane ride, motion sickness on the ground and exhaustion. From day one, God filled me with His peace and all of my fears subsided. Not one of them was ever an issue.

Walking off the airplane in Entebbe was surreal. We had arrived. We got through customs with 39 boxes (that was a miracle in itself) and were warmly welcomed (at midnight) by Irene, Pastor David and the rest of the team.

The highlight (and reason we came to Uganda) was to visit the kids and staff at Ebenezer School. From the minute we stepped off the bus, we met dozens of people and children from in and around the village. Everyone was welcoming and hospitable. Some children were shy and others were friendly, but they were all curious and kind.

As I stood on the porch of the Mission House, I thought back to four years earlier and could not believe where I was standing. I was in Kyakitanga looking at the church on the hill, watching teenage boys play soccer, admiring the the newly built boys and girls' dorms, and seeing children in green and orange school uniforms walking hand and hand across the primary campus. There were no words. Just gratefulness and joy. It had come full circle.

As Ssepuuya Martin recently commented in one of his Facebook posts, "Amazing trip, amazing team, wonderful God!" I plan to go back someday soon...but until then, I'll have to settle for Facebook and What's App messages from my new friends and being involved from afar.


See more pics here!
Raising the ROOF for the High School!

It's hard to imagine finishing primary school and having no place to continue your education, but that was the reality in our sub county (population 250,000) until we opened our high school in 2014. The news of the magnificent school being built in this "unlucky area" of Mubende District has brought notice from afar. The government, noting that HEED is doing so much for the community, pledged to bring electricity to the area. Wow! I didn't dream I'd see power in Kyakitanga in my lifetime. Heartfelt thanks to all who have contributed toward the high school construction, and please pray that the electricity will come!

It's a big deal when a bulldozer arrives!
Carrying water by jerry can to mix the cement.
Up go the walls - brick by brick!
Retaining wall going up.
Up to 40 people/day employed!
And the roof is on!
Our Favorite One-Liners Ever!

This month, our accountant sent a simple one-line email that had us shouting hallelujah! It was simply, "this month neither school needs any funds from HEED to pay teachers' salaries." I re-read it several times to take in this defining moment. Working toward sustainability is a multi-faceted effort: improving livelihoods of the community so families can pay tuition, teaching how to make and follow budgets, strict accounting, and controlling expenses. The schools can't absorb all the operations costs yet, but this is big progress! 

Another recent message stated simply, "we have harvested about 750 kilograms of beans from our school farm." That is 1,650 pounds of beans to provide nutritious food for our children without purchasing it! Parents who can't pay school fees have been "giving back" by working on our farm where we also demonstrate more advanced farming techniques. It's been a years-long process to get the farming program going.

In another effort to improve the children's diet and generate income for the schools, 290 fruit trees were planted across the primary school land. With the year-round growing climate, we should begin harvesting from some of the trees in less than two years. The kids are divided into three groups to learn to care for the trees so that they can take this knowledge home to their families.

Growing maize to feed the children.
Beans harvested from our farm.
Inspiring Facts

We applied for our non-profit status in 2007 with the help of a law firm who offered to donate their services. It was a daunting process of developing by-laws and articles of incorporation followed by a "six-month or so" wait for approval after application. Wouldn't you know it, our non-profit approval was stamped on February 14th! Since we are about loving our neighbors in Uganda, we are encouraged by this symbolic stamp of approval.

In Uganda, it is important to follow the government guidelines. Recently dozens of schools were shut down. The challenge is that guidelines are somewhat "variable" and not necessarily in writing. We hired an engineer on staff in 2017 to oversee our construction and maintenance. He, like most Ugandans, has more than one job. We knew he also worked for the government, but it wasn't until working on the plans for our high school with him that we learned he is employed by the Ministry of Education in the compliance department. God gave us the inside track! We're thankful for you, Tom!
Join Us in Prayer

"...As you help us by your prayers. Then many will give thanks on our behalf for the gracious favor granted us in answer to the prayers of many."   2 Corinthians 1:11

Answered prayers:
  • A fantastic April mission team who contributed so much, stayed healthy and had a good experience.
  • A strong spirit of teamwork and unity between staff in Uganda.
  • Faithful provision to pay staff & teachers, provide food, build the high school, add to our water harvesting system, buy additional land for the high school, start our farming project, and start community empowerment projects. THANK YOU! 

 Prayer requests:

  • For God to be glorified in all that we do and for the fruits of the spirit to be manifested in the lives of the children.
  • For young Pastor Peter, to be responsive and submissive to the leadership and mentorship of UCOM, our partner ministry who has leadership over the church.
  • For the community to be empowered to move toward self-sustainability through embracing new ideas and efforts.
  • For a new venture. HEED would like to introduce vocational training so the high school graduates have education AND a skill to earn a better living. Please pray the Lord will direct, provide and the staff will embrace.
  • For our local Board of Directors. They are godly but very busy people. Pray for time needed to implement planned initiatives. 
If you'd like to join our prayer team, please e-mail heeduganda@gmail.com with the subject line "Add me to the prayer group". We would be delighted to have you on our team!

Thank you!

 " W eebale nyo"
in Luganda.

Thank you for equipping us to reach out  in love to children       and their families in an area n icknamed "unlucky."