Back to School Joys

“Are you happy to be going back to school?” How many of us have just asked our kids that question? My own primary age grandchildren just answered, “Yes Mimi, ’cause I get to see my all my friends.” Kids are kids everywhere. I am sure the school children in refugee camps in Uganda are happy to see their friends too. But I am not sure that would be the first answer they would give for that question. There, the question would most likely be answered by, “I will get to have a big meal everyday, and I can get a drink of clean water anytime I want.” Some will mention looking forward to receiving a school uniform and a pair of shoes. School is not an opportunity to take for granted in Africa, this is especially true in refugee camps.
     Living Water Preschool and Primary School opened in January 2022 in Belameling refugee camp. We started with 200 three, four and five year old pupils, plus 200 children enrolled in the first through third grade. Our newly constructed building had classroom space only for the primary grade children. The preschool children continued to meet in a small unfinished shelter. In May the construction of our second building was completed. We were happy to move the nursery classes into the permanent classrooms. 
     Currently, thanks to a very generous donor, we are in the process of building a kitchen for the cooks to be able to prepare the school meals inside, out of the rain and sun. We are praying for the funds to build a covered dining hall for the children to have a place to eat out of the rain. This hall will also be used for assemblies and worship.
     Other needs include more latrines. At this time we have 4 stalls for all 400 children and 19 school staff. We have plans to construct 8 more latrines, as soon as the funds can be raised.
     In addition we are purchasing 200 more pairs of “Shoes that Grow”, which are sandals that adjust up to five sizes. In May we had only raised enough money to purchase 200 pairs. So we planned to give those to the primary age students. To our surprise the  shoes would only fit the preschool children. Due to the closure of schools for two years, the first through third graders were two years older than usual. We gave all the shoes to the preschool pupils. Now we are seeking funds ($20/pair) again to provide 200 pairs of shoes for the primary age children. 
     Our school is first and foremost focused on the spiritual growth of our children. Jesus said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things, from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this was your good pleasure.” Matthew 11:25 
Join us as we seek to please the Father!