On April 7, 2019 a team of 7 YMEN and 1 donor traveled to Uganda, Africa to learn from, serve, and support the work of Partners in Mission. Bringing 150 pairs of shoes, sports jerseys, African study Bibles, and 41 microscopes – we came with gifts in hand to support the students and teachers of Kamwenge Secondary and Vocational School and the Good Shepherd Primary School. “Looking at these plant cells helps me see the building blocks of God’s creation,” said one of the biology students. In addition to leading youth workshops and building peer-to-peer relationships, one of the highlights was YMEN hosting a teacher celebration day with a grand banquet for the 70 teachers that teach more than 900 students at the schools.
So what are a few things you accomplished when you were in Uganda? Tommy Patrick worked with the sports teams, DeJa Roy showed Finding Nemo to students who have never seen the movie, Travion Austin helped the culinary students bake cookies, Johnitha Brown passed out shoes to children, and Teshauna Edwards read children’s books to younger students. Everyone found ways to serve and laugh alongside of some of the most beautiful children in the world. After spending four days at the school, our team was able to go to Queen Elizabeth National Park and see some of the amazing animals in their natural habitat in the rift valley of East Africa. We lived with Ugandan people, learned to barter in the marketplace, stopped at the equator, joined them for worship and dance on Palm Sunday, and cried with those hurting amidst abject poverty and sickness. We will never be the same again! “I have taken so much for granted, I am coming back to Chicago ready to do more to make a difference in the lives of others. We have been given so much, and to whom much is given, much is also required,” says Tommy Patrick. Thank you to all who helped to support this expensive but life-impacting trip!