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Saturday, January 26, 2013

Riot Police and Tear Gas? It must be the Synergy Cup!

January saw the climax of the Synergy Cup - our Community Tournament that we've run every year under various guises since 2004. There was a bit of trouble with fans and managers not accepting referees decisions - they make Sir Alex Ferguson look positively mild mannered - but we only had to rush a tear-gas and shot-gun toting anti-riot police squad to the pitch the once!

Synergy is a light of integrity and discipline in the otherwise murky amoral world of Masaka Football. We showcase local talent, we show how footballing can be done and we preach that Jesus can transform lives! Thankfully our Synergy teams dispatched the worst behaved opposition and our two senior teams and one of our junior teams reached their respective finals. The Juniors lost 2-1, but we saw our reserve team beat the first team on penalties after a 1-1 draw. Three days later we managed to win another tournament! It means that as we commemorate Synergy's first official birthday, we have 3 trophies acquired in the last 2 months to crown our celebrations!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Premature Baby Unit Opens at Kitovu Hospital

Dr Sarah has some INCREDIBLY exciting news to share...

It’s been a loooooooong time coming, but we are finally ready to open our Baby Unit! We want to care for sick and premature babies, at Kitovu Hospital, simply because too many die, and it's heart-breaking.

The room, and some really quite high-tech equipment (mainly donated by some folks in Ireland), has been there for a long time, but the barrier was a lack of nurses to staff the Unit. River of Life has teamed up with Kitovu to resolve this, recruiting donors to finance the salaries of the nurses that are so desperately needed.

I cannot tell you how grateful we all are, both to the individual sponsors helping us to fund this, and to God for getting all the strings pulled together at the right time.... not to mention for teaching us patience (oh, it’s a learning curve!!) as progress can be incredibly slow.

Opening of this Baby Unit will really impact on newborn death rates, not to mention improving general health of babies, at Kitovu Hospital. Our nurses have been brilliant during the training and will be involved in resuscitating sick newborns, caring for them, educating mothers, identifying sick babies, and also picking up on problems in new babies that might otherwise be missed (as they will be doing “baby checks” on each newborn).

We’ll keep you posted on progress - it’s a busy but joyful time right now! Please do pray for further funding, though. We have enough for now, but we are only about half way towards recruiting the necessary number of regular donors to ensure the Unit can continue. If anyone has a real heart for sick or tiny babies, then please do get in touchdownload a sponsor form here, or head straight over to our donation page (MyDonate by BT).

Monday, January 7, 2013

Join the New Year +ONE Campaign!

Do you believe everyone can do something for someone?

We do! And we know we're not alone, because thanks to you and everyone else who has given to River of Life, we're able to do a tonne of stuff for some of the neediest people in the world.

Like open a new Neonatal Unit in our local hospital because too many children were dying. Or help nearly 50 orphans and former street children 'fly high' through the White Eagle Project. And that's not to mention the hundreds of children and young people that are getting a chance to realise their potential through Synergy, our community sports programme, or the 10 (so far!) young people we're putting through University as part of our Leadership Academy.

If you haven't been able to join us in the +ONE Campaign, we'd love to invite you to in 2013. There's a whole host of things you could do, from donating directly to fundraising through crazy events. The whole point is to recognise that everyone can do something for someone - whatever you choose to do, please know that every penny makes a difference!

Have a look at some of the ideas below, and if it takes your fancy, click to download the form for more info. Of course, if you have any questions, please contact us.

  • Sponsor a place at the Synergy Sports Academy and help youngsters realise their God-given potential
  • Sponsor an Orphan or Vulnerable Child to 'Fly High' with the White Eagle Project
  • Improve Food Security by "Giving the gift that can't stop giving" and developing the River of Life Farm
  • Become a regular donor and keep the new Baby Unit open, saving dozens of poorly babies' lives.
  • Raise a new generation of leaders and by sponsoring one of our Leadership Academy members

If you want to join in, and would prefer to set everything up online, just head straight over to our donation page (MyDonate by BT). All of these ideas have recommended gifts, but please feel free to give as much or as little as you can, and together we can make 2013 AWESOME for someone. So, who's your +ONE going to be?

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Farming's the future!

It's been a productive season on the River of Life Farm...

Under the management of Uncle Kayima, the team have helped to reduce the food costs for the White Eagle project by supplying good amounts of beans and matooke. Our cash crops are also doing well - a new sugar-cane plantation is looking good, and the Plantain and Coffee we planted in February 2012 is developing well.

Our new piglets are all healthy, and Farmer Kay is adding to our stock by buying in some young pigs of some different (more valuable!) breeds. Our cow is due to give birth next February, so we will then be able to add milk to the White Eagle diet.

For 2013, Farmer Kayima is REALLY keen to establish a small chicken project. Well, 600 chickens to be exact, because, as he explains Chickens are great - they offer eggs AND meat. Tasty. He also wants to build a store so that we can get good prices for our produce, and consolidate the other areas or planting. The Farm is not self-sufficient just-yet, but it will be once all the development is done, as well as offering food security and reducing our costs at River of Life Church

Thank you to everyone who has "given the gift that can't stop giving" and helped develop the farm. If you would like to help, get in touch! £500 is enough to establish an acre, contribute to 20% of the start-up costs for the chickens or 10% of the store. You could do a sponsored event, or split the cost on a monthly basis - click here to download a sponsor form, or head straight over to our donation page (MyDonate by BT).