I recently received photos of Mariatu receiving the latest letter I sent her, along with a drawing and a video! I love that The Bridge of Hope sends us all of this each time! She is just precious!Mariatu is 6 years old and lives in Sierra Leone.
My snail mail letters to Shadia and Nicholas arrived in Kampala, Uganda, and I also got photos of them! I have come to love this special set of siblings so much, and seeing the smiles on their faces made me so happy!
Aren’t they adorable? I correspondent with Nicholas and Shadia through the wonderful program of Living Life in Abundance Ministry.
I also received another letter from Uganda last month, this time from my little guy Nicholas with Living Life in Abundance Ministry. I correspond with him and his sister, Shadia, there. Joy, the woman who runs the organization, helped him type up a wonderful letter!
Nicholas and Shadia are 3 and 4 and live in Uganda.
“Dear Aunty Alisa, How are you my friend? My name is Nicholas and I am happy to have you as my friend. Thank you so much for my letter and for all the photos you sent me. You are all beautiful. I loved to see your cat Emma because I love cats very much. I live in Uganda on a village called Nakulabye with so many residents. It is a small town but a slum and not very far from the capital city of Uganda. I stay with our mother and sister Shadia. Our father died so our mother takes care of us. She sells jackfruit and maize by the roadside in the evening. I go with her at night when we have to wait for customers to come and buy. Thank you very much for all the gifts you gave me and my sister Shadia. They gave us very beautiful shoes and also a soccer ball. I love it so much and my friends on the village come to play with me. When my mother gets money for me to go to school I will also play football at school. Our mother was also very happy because they gave us food also. When there’s no food in the house my mother takes long to cook but when Mama Joy brought us food we were so happy. I even love to eat bread and I want to eat rice and meat on Christmas day. I want you to be my friend all the time. I will pray for God to keep you every day and to give you much money every day so that you can buy me and my sister bread and gifts. I love you so much. May God bless you!
I got some pictures sent to me of Nicholas and Shadia at the Living Life in Abundance Ministry’s Christmas party. It was great to see that the party was such a success, because these kids live in the poorest of poor conditions and any meal is a big deal, let alone a nice one at a party.
Shadia with Santa. She seems a little overwhelmed but happy.
Nicholas with Santa. Poor kid looks scared, but I can’t say I blame him 😉
The weekend after I sent the donations for Nicholas and Shadia, for which I got receipts and found that Joy keeps very meticulous records, I received lots of pictures of them receiving their gifts! I was almost in tears to see the joy of this family, who has so little and who has been through so much, receiving simple things but things that are so needed. I was glad for the opportunity to send money instead of a package, as I didn’t have to worry about high international shipping fees and I knew I could trust Joy to purchase the right sizes and items for them. She promised me lots of pictures to make me feel like I was there with them, and she certainly did send lots!
Here are just some of them with items they received:
Joy told me how happy the children and their mother were. Along with toys for the kids, they also got clothing, shoes, and underwear. And the family got food, which was very needed. Seeing the beautiful smiles on their faces made my heart so full. I now love and care so very much about this family on the other side of the world that I very likely will never meet. But we are connected through prayer, though letters, and through God.
I have developed such a passion for Uganda. This country and its beautiful people have definitely made its way into my heart. So when I heard of the small organization, Living Life in Abundance Ministry, run by an incredibly kind and generous woman named Joy who lives in Uganda and knows these families and their needs, I contacted her to ask for a correspondent. I told her I didn’t have any requests, and I’d be happy to have any child. She assigned me Nicholas, who is 3 years old. He and his sister live with their mother. They recently lost their father to HIV/AIDS. His first picture with his sad face and torn shirt broke my heart, but then I saw his smile, and I was happy that I could hopefully give him a little more to smile about. I sent off a letter and a couple weeks later, I sent a donation to Joy so that she could purchase gifts for him, whatever he and his family needed.
Well, when I had contacted Joy to ask for a correspondent, I had first contacted the wrong email address. Several weeks later, though, she replied to my first email asking if I still wanted a correspondent. I replied that I was assigned Nicholas, but would be happy to have another one if there were more children in need. I was thrilled to be assigned his sister, Shadia, so that I can love on this whole family even more! I quickly sent another donation so Shadia wouldn’t be left out with gifts. Shadia is 4 years old. I’m grateful God had planned this “unplanned addition” all along!