Africa Missions

Girls returning from school break

Paul Fields and one of the girls LCOP supports

Refugees coming into Ugand

Daniel and his family


What’s happening in South Sudan, with our ASAH Girls, and More The civil war in South Sudan still wages on. This December will mark four long years since the war broke out in December of 2013. When you think things couldn’t get any worse, it does. The current count is tens of thousands dead, two million people have fled the country, and countless people have been displaced. Although peace talks are in process, both sides are still fighting with no clear good guy in sight. This year Uganda hit the one million mark for refugees entering their country from South Sudan. The ASAH staff was able to move all the girls safely to Moyo, Uganda in early 2014, which is located in Northern Uganda (10 miles from the South Sudan border). This January ASAH again moved 44 girls to Zana, Uganda, which is just South of Kampala, Uganda for better schools and as a precaution due to the rising tensions in the area. I was there during this move and at that time 2500 to 3000 refugees per day coming from South Sudan were crossing the border into Uganda. It’s very humbling seeing all these desperate people carrying all they can carry and the only things they will have for their new life in Uganda. If you had to leave home forever and had five minutes what would you take?In December the school year will soon end, and the girls will visit relatives (Aunts, Uncles, Grandmothers) to try keeping their family culture for the Christmas holidays and then go to a place called Child Voice located in Gulu, Uganda (center of Uganda). I will be traveling with Deb Dawson this coming January 2018 to Uganda to help with these transitions to Child Voice and than moving all the girls back to Zana for the start of their new school year in early February. While I’m in Gulu I will have a chance to check on Daniel Kuany and his family and see how they are doing. Daniel was our first connection in Africa. He met us at the airports in Kenya, South Sudan and on my first trip to Uganda. To see a familiar face when you get off the plane in a strange place is very comforting. Then traveling in countries with poor maps, basically no road signs, and not knowing the language, Daniel’s presence was at times maybe a lifesaver. Daniel like the ASAH girls had to flee South Sudan with only about a days notice and get on a cattle boat and motor up the Nile to safety. At midnight the day before he and his family evacuated Bor, South Sudan Daniel called me in desperation that his town was burning and people were being randomly shot or burned in their homes. The first thing the next morning I wired him just $100, not knowing that without this money he would not of been able to get on that boat. It’s hard to believe that the money spent on a night out with friends and family could save another family’s life. Daniel and his family are now living in Kiryandogo refugee camp. Daniel received his teaching degree earlier this year from a Lawrence University in Uganda, which was only possible with the help from Lutheran Church of Peace’s generous contributions. Although Daniel is working as a teacher he and is family are just barely making it. The international definition of extreme poverty is anyone making less than $1.90 per day/ per person. Daniel and his family are roughly at $.55 (cents) a day /per person. So hopefully I will be able to help him out someway during my visit. I am humbled by these experiences.This is my sixth trip to Africa and my fourth trip with Deb Dawson (founder and President of ASAH African Soul American Heart) and it is a honor to represent the good church members of Lutheran Church of Peace and see Mary the girl our church sponsors, the girls that some of our individual members help support, and all the girls and staff who I have been able to know very well. Although the world looks pretty hopeless at times, you should know we/you have made a difference in these ASAH girls’ lives and the life of Daniel and his family. If you want to learn more about Daniel, ASAH or my up coming trip feel free to contact me. If you want to donate any monies for ASAH or Daniel, please leave it or send it to the church office, it would be greatly appreciated by them.Thanks, Paul Fields 608-642-3395