When I returned in May from Alberta where I’d done a pretty good job of realizing “chattle freedom” by passing on most of my personal belongings to people who could be using them instead of them being stored in a locker for yet one more month, I was feeling pretty light and happy. What a great gift to the giver to pass on things not being used… I highly recommend, if you’ve not done it lately, you start immediately and do it well and often!
So, back in Vancouver, I was invited by Vancouver College Elementary School, who had raised funds for the ACIO Child Care Center in Uganda around Christmas ( see earlier posting ) to give a recap of where and how their generosity and kindness had been received by the children in Uganda. I discussed with the over 200 children sitting on the floor of the gym in front of me that the money they had raised had provided much needed foam mattresses, blankets, mosquito nets and extra clothing for the 60 children in full time care at the center.
I asked that 2 boys, who had dedicated their birthdays to the orphans by way of foregoing presents and collecting donations instead ( see earlier posting ), stand and receive special gratitude from the children in Uganda who, because of their incredible kindness of heart and Love in action, had all been outfitted with school uniforms and scribblers. That’s 60 children in Uganda who’s lives had been totally changed by 2 boys, their families and friends in Vancouver! Everyone applauded and cheered them!
Afterwards, and surprising to me, two of the students stood and presented me with yet another donation all the children had been working on collecting through the Spring. Amazing! Looking out through my misted eyes, I said to them all “Your kindness and Love are so beautiful and it is such a great pleasure for me to stand here and receive this gift from you on behalf of the children in Uganda, but I tell you, I think we should telephone them and tell them all about it together.” Their eyes lit up, they sat very still and quiet.
Using a cell phone I placed a call to the director of the Ugandan project on his cell! Putting the phone on speaker, we could all hear the funny “brrng brrng” on the other end. Soon there was a voice from around the other side of the world greeting us all with joyful enthusiasm! Completely engaged, the children in front of me sparkled, grinning ear to ear. Over 200 little happy voices called out in unison “Hello from Canada!” Acting as their middle woman, I told the director about the children’s latest gift, we discussed how it was rainy season in Uganda, how planting of crops were completed, how the children are all so very grateful and happy to know that they are being remembered by children in Canada, how they are all sleeping comfortably and safely because of their Love, how they are appreciating and feeling so proud to have school uniforms to wear and books to write in. ( It was noon, pacific time, where we were, so all the children in Uganda were already fast asleep for the night.)
The call lasted about 5 minutes and although reception was pretty sketchy at times, it was a powerful connection the children at the school will likely always remember, not to mention how the director of ACIO and I will! As the call came to an end the children collectively shouted a cheerful “Goodbye from Canada!” We were all buzzing!
I told the children at the school that once I’m back in Uganda we will arrange calls to them by Skype as it is my very heartfelt wish that all the children will be able to see and speak with one another directly, share moments and stories and Love one on one, hopefully beginning this fall! Excited to feel so connected with them, the children had lots of new questions they wanted to ask about the kids in Uganda, but as it was time for their lunch I promised to return another day and visit each class to answer all they wanted to ask.
The assembly ended with the principal saying the school wants to continue to focus their efforts during the upcoming school year to provide support for the Child Care Center in Uganda! An incredible, affirming and most empowering intention, I was humbled and grateful and likely floated in mid air all the way out of the gym! More soon…
Blessings and Love!
With so much Gratitude,