Uganda is currently under it’s 2nd COVID shutdown, expiring in the end of July, closing schools, churches, and gatherings again. Mission Servants Ministry has taken advantage of the Pandemic disruption since early 2020 to improve and build facilities at Promise Primary School (PPS) and Rock View Primary School (RVPS). The facilities will be ready when the kids are allowed to return, hopefully by August. These projects not only provide learning facilities but also much needed jobs and hope. Shockingly these buildings are finished complete for about $25,000 each. Money is a great tool when used wisely. Thanks for all the support for MSM and all praise to God.
Replacing a 4 room wooden structure, the 4 room brick building will feature a folding door to allow a double sized room when needed. This building will increase the permanent classroom number to 10, one room for each grade, and a new dorm room for the boys that board.
Early in the COVID period of 2020, a new kitchen was constructed to allow more efficient feeding of the 400 students that will ultimately attend PPS.
Rock View Primary School…
A 2 room structure was finished into a 2 class building in January.
This 5 room building was completed also in January.
Construction was started in June on a 4 room class building to replace the last wooden structure. This building will be completed ib July and will provide RVPS with 11 class rooms. It is expected that 400 kids will ultimately attend RVPS.
Before COVID19, Promise Primary was growing rapidly, filling all nursery and primary classes with over 300 students and expecting nearly 50 boarding students for the higher grades. The original kitchen where morning porridge, lunch, and teachers food consisted of a simple sheet metal shelter and a pot suspended on 3 rocks over a fire. The food and grain stores were in rooms in the office. Rainy and windy weather was a real challenge. Bless the cooking staff for keeping up under those conditions. The pandemic shut down allowed time for a solution however.
Besides necessity, upgrading the kitchen was a pending requirement of the school registration process. Therefore, a 15′ by 30′, 4 room building was built which features a large well ventilated and lit cooking area, a food pantry, a room for maize and bean bulk storage, a cooks residence room, and 45′ of covered veranda for kids and firewood to stay out of the rain. Three large wood burning efficient cooking stoves were installed. The cooking staff will be ready when school is allowed to open.
Here is the old kitchen….
This project was completed for under $10,000. School Director Noah put in a lot of hands on work and management to insure cost efficiency. Thank you all for your prayers and support.
A month ago I reported that the plan was for schools to open on a limited basis on June 2nd. Not only did that not happen but a new plan has not been established. Schools, both government and private have been ordered to continue to pay teachers. I would expect many private schools to fail and close. Promise Primary, being sponsored by Mission Servants Ministry has been able to pay the teachers and use the store of maize grain that was intended for Term I for needy families and teachers in the area.
The economy however is hit hard in Africa and the poor are struggling in a big way. There is no ability to work during shut down and no government assistance. People are without food and in trouble. The good news remains that the number of reported cases of COVID19 and deaths are not high in Kenya and very low in Uganda. Uganda still claims zero deaths. Of course we can’t plan our usual July/August trip to visit the homes due to the pandemic. Our prayers are for a January trip to be possible.
The kids that are stationed with extended family during shut down are visited and needs addressed.
Usually food is left with them. Roughly 15 kids are staying at the CRM home since it is safest for them, many of them enjoy learning craft skills while on shut down….
We did take advantage of most of the kids being away to upgrade the cooking stoves. The old stoves were cracked, had broken parts, hot, inefficient with wood, smoked a lot, and were too large. We replaced them with 4 smaller units with precision fitting pots and an outside grill.
Look for another update in July. Thank you for your continued support and prayers.
A project alliance between the Lyavo community leaders, Lyavo Bible Church, Bridgeway Hope Academy, and Mission Servants Ministry began in January and a bridge was conceived, designed, and built in time for the new flooding this April. A meeting was held during the January Mission Trip 29 and the idea to love the community with a bridge project was met with great enthusiasm. MSM previously sponsored two other bridges for this community.
It has been a very wet year in Western Kenya going back to mid 2019. Flooding continues to be a problem even recently. Last year, the heaviest used of 3 bridges that allowed people, bicycles and motorbikes to cross a small flooding prone river to get to the school and church, washed away. MSM built the other two above the high flood mark 1/2 and 1 km away from this one. This bridge was a simple log bridge set on the dirt banks of the river.
The design plan for this bridge was to have the span surface be at least 1 foot above the previous high water mark, massive concrete footers at each end, a mid stream support, long approach ramps that extend past the mud, and use materials that prevent decay for a long lasting solution. The implementation plan was for all labor to be provided by the local community and church and the funds for materials by MSM. Construction expertise was provided by Pastor Ken of the church, a concrete builder by trade. It was completed in 3 months…an incredible job and great example of Community/Ministry Partnership. A bridge, literally and figuratively.
What follows is a series of photos in sequence on how this bridge was built. The cost to MSM to help make this important community loving project happen was less than $2,000. Praise Jesus. Thank you all for your support and prayers.
9 of the 10 of us (Aaron left two days ago) and our 36 bags with over 1,000 pounds of tools, medicine, clothes, soccer cleats, Bibles, Jesus Film projector, audio Bibles, and other supplies, started out at Charlotte Airport at 4:00 am this morning.
The first crisis of the trip was a failed zipper on our largest duffel bag. A number of not great options rolled through my mind. No problem….we have Chandler, an Eagle Scout with spare paracord and pocket knife in his bag to check. The duffle was made of ripstop fabric so we stitched it closed. Hope the security check is OK with it.
We are excited to see the kids and the community and be inside God’s plan for this trip. Thank you for your prayers.