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An update on KOI in Uganda

January 6, 2011
 |  by Julie

An update on KOI in Uganda

A couple months ago, we told you about a church in Edmonton, AB, that was planning to take Kids of Integrity to Uganda. Here’s an update from Shirley B., one of the team members who helped lead the lessons for the children in Marare, Uganda.

“As previously mentioned, the Food for the Hungry staff for Marare, Uganda, requested that we teach a program that would help the children understand how God wants them to live. We focused on the Fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22).

The plan was for us to have four stations: story, songs, crafts and games, and to rotate the children from one station to another. Good plan, but the word “rotate” (or a translation thereof) didn’t seem to be in the children’s vocabulary. From our perspective, the first day was somewhat disastrous. The children didn’t stay in their groups – they went wherever they saw something interesting: balloons being used at the games station to represent joy; a battery-operated iPod® docking station and iPod being used at the songs station (a first for the children to see/hear); paper airplanes being made at the crafts station (these children had never made paper airplanes); the “love/joy cover sin” experiment at the story station. Being outside where everything could be seen and heard didn’t help. Brian, who was doing games, had the same boy in all four sessions!

The teachers of Marare felt the day went very well, but they promised to help keep the children in their groups on day two. From then on, everything went very smoothly. The children, although not knowing any or very little English, caught on to the Bible stories and songs very quickly. By day three, after our teaching time, we could hear many of them singing "This Little Light of Mine" and "Shout to the North" with their friends.

They loved the reinforcement of lesson themes with the object lessons, picture books and songs. Object lessons and picture books were new concepts for them. The children were in awe of “love/joy cover sin,” “fizzy mess” and others. We used BIG picture books for the Bible lesson because we had groups of approximately 50 or more children. These ideas helped them to learn in a new way – rather than through their regular rote memorization – and helped them to think about the concepts of the Fruit of the Spirit.

We taught two Scripture verses: John 3:16 and Galatians 5:22. In all of the four groups, the themes we taught were reinforced. By the end of the week, the majority of the children were able to recite the verses and understand their life application.

On the last day we were in the village, many of the children were holding all the crafts they had made during the week – they treasured them dearly! We know the Holy Spirit was definitely at work in the lives of these children, and that the lessons taught in story time, and reinforced in crafts, songs and games, would be reminders for the children for some time.

As a team, we felt immensely blessed by the passion and excitement that the children of Marare and their parents had for us. We were so thankful that God chose us as His vessels for Marare.”

We want to thank Shirley and her team at Northgate Baptist Church for letting us be a part of their work in Uganda. We were so excited to see the beautiful, smiling faces of the Marare children! We pray God’s blessings upon the people of Uganda.

(If you know of a church or group in your area that's planning on using Kids of Integrity in a similar way, would you let us know? Email [email protected])