Get Flash

Friday, July 26, 2013

Breaking news! We welcome two new boys to the WEP

This afternoon we've welcomed two new boys to the White Eagle Project, brothers aged 4 and 9. Their short lives have been unspeakably tragic so far, having suffered the kind of betrayal and trauma no child should have to endure.

Join us in praying that this is the beginning of something new, that their lives might be transformed, and that they might "fly high", higher than they have ever imagined. If you want to become part of this miracle-waiting-to-happen by being a sponsor, then please get in touch as soon as you can!

This is a seminal moment for the White Eagle Project. For over a year we've been working hard on meeting all the requirements necessary to complete our registration as an official Children's Home. We've worked on numerous policies, we've recruited new staff and done a huge amount of training, and we've developed the home itself, always on a very tight budgets.

But the hard work has paid off! We were inspected two weeks ago and although there are still a list of advisories to work on, the list is nowhere near as long as it was and they're very impressed with out progress and our approach. So much so they want to use us as an example of best practise, which is tremendous news.

It means that we can now accept referrals from the Probations Office, the local Government office in charge of looked-after children and Children at Risk, and we can step up in cases like those of these brothers.

But we couldn't do it without your support, so thank you! Please spread the word, and let everyone know we need sponsors. Please get in touch by email if you can help - click here. We want to be helping more children to smile like these ones!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Help us Celebrate Children!

At the White Eagle Project, our vision is to see vulnerable children 'fly high'! To do that, each member of our team needs to be an expert navigator to help them chart a route through the skies...

Imagine being confronted by the challenging behaviour of a girl who has suffered the most horrendous abuse from her father. Or a boy who has spent three years on the streets and knows precious little about love. Or the toddler, an offspring of incest, abandoned and ostracised by his family. Those are the kinds of challenges our team encounter each day.

Celebrating Children is probably the best course for training people to work with children dealing with these impossibly difficult situations. It was developed by an amazing charity called Viva, who are all about inspiring lasting change in children's lives. They help to establish networks of people and organisations who are working with children at risk, and inspire and train them to raise their game.

We're absolutely thrilled that the Kampala network - CARNAC - have agreed to come to Masaka and lead the training, and at a massively discounted rate. The training will be held at River of Life Church, and involves an intensive week every month for the next four months. There's coursework and exams and everything - it's the real deal!

Emily, Sarah and Julius did the course in 2011. It transformed them, and has transformed the White Eagle Project. We now have this golden opportunity to train more people! We want at least 12 members of our team - those involved in any children's work within River of Life - to get the benefit of this training. Although it's massively discounted (by nearly 75%) we still need to raise £720 for them all to do it. That's just £60 per person!

If you think you can help by funding half a place, or a full place, or even more than that, please click here to make a donation. It really is going to make a world of difference for our children. We will also be having people from other organisations in Masaka attend - Masaka is going to become a real beacon of best practise for working with children at risk!

Now, isn't that worth a thumbs up?

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Oh Annie... you won't be an orphan for long!

You might recognise those lyrics from the Musical, Annie. We want to make families, not orphans which means working hard for reconciliation, and ensuring resettlement successfully helps every child to 'fly high!'

But every now and then we have a case where we wonder how it can happen. Our Annie* came to us last year from a terribly abusive family situation. She had suffered the worst betrayal any child could suffer from the hands of her father. We know of one case where, due to the shame brought on the family by such actions, a child has been killed rather than allow the 'evidence' to live. Thankfully in this case the authorities acted quickly, the Police were involved, arrests made and Annie came to us in secret.

Annie had a mother, but we had no idea where she was, and no way of contacting her. Annie hadn't seen her for years. With the rest of the family off limits for making any enquiries, we were left with very few options. In the meantime, as you can imagine, our Annie was exhibiting some extraordinarily challenging behaviour. The White Eagle Team were certainly kept on their toes, and their resolve tested to the limit.

Annie's behaviour improved, as we knew it would, but we were no closer to tracing her mother. Then, last month, Annie started praying. As a treat for finishing First Term, the Girls watched the Musical, Annie. Our Annie desperately wanted her mum to find her, just as Annie does in the film, but all Aunty Sarah could advise her to do was to pray.

What do you do in that situation? Do you worry about things like false hope and the potential for a little girl's broken heart yearning for a mother who, for all we know, may not even still be alive?

No. You join that little girl on her knees and pray. And pray. And pray. One week passed, then two. Week three came and still we prayed. And then, on the Friday afternoon, having searched for we don't know how long, Annie's mother and grandmother appeared in reception...

Annie was overwhelmed! Successful resettlement, especially in cases as traumatic as this one, take a lot of time, so she’ll be visiting her family every holiday and staying with us during school term time, with visits from her mum. This will help her to continue with the good start she's made at a supportive school whilst with us, help us to continue giving the expert care needed in such a traumatic case, and help her Mum to adjust to live looking after her own daughter again.

And in the meantime, we all praise God that nothing is impossible for Him!
Emily and Annie's Mum on that wonderful Friday

*We’ve changed Annie’s name in line with our privacy policy

Thursday, July 4, 2013

A new Manager for the White Eagle Project

We're delighted to welcome Paul as the new White Eagle Team Manager, taking over this week from Sarah who has done an absolutely stirling job as Acting-Manager for MUCH longer than the 6 months she initially agreed to do.

Paul comes to us from a Swedish NGO where he has worked for 12 years, most recently as their Head of Administration. He has a wealth of experience in both the NGO sector and in Masaka's wider church life. He's a Pastor at a local church a few miles from us, helps to run a ministry for the elderly in his spare time and also chairs a Marriage and Family group drawn from Masaka churches.

He's a man after our own heart, and we're really looking forward to getting to know him!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Update on Prayer Mountain

The battle for Prayer Mountain continues, two years to the day that we secured the funds to purchase the majority of the land. You may remember that we are in dispute with some encroachers. There are many twists in the tale, but the latest is that we have now registered criminal trespass cases with the courts.

Unfortunately the courts are overwhelmed because Masaka does not have a Judge. The threat of legal action seems to be working though. The encroachers appear to be striking a more conciliatory tone, and we're hopefully that this long, and painful saga may be over soon.

There is some excellent news too - we’ve recently been bowled over by an awesome donation that will help us secure the next 2 acres and begin to renovate the exisiting huts and commence 24/7 prayer!