Back in 2006, being in receipt of a small amount of money after the death of a grandparent, we spent 3 weeks in Africa (the only foreign ‘holiday’ in 19 years of marriage). We took with us our 9 year old son. For the first we stayed with a Mothers’ Union leader near Kampala in Uganda before travelling on to stay with friends and visit other Mothers’ Union leaders in South Africa.
So why am I telling you this now? Because that trip was probably one of the biggest blessings we have received as a family. Because I’ve been meaning to blog about it for the whole two years I’ve been blogging. And, because now I’ve a great excuse!
Today is Ash Wednesday and many people now mark Lent by “counting their blessings” in support of a major Christian charity. Mothers’ Union are one such charity, and their ‘Count Your Blessings’ leaflet was featured as the centre spread of the latest issue of ‘Families First’ and is also downloadable here. This year the MU are taking as their inspiration for Count Your Blessings their Family Life Programme which runs in 10 regions of Uganda, and towards which our financial gifts giving thanks for our blessings will go.
The Family Life Programme (FLP) was the major project that I visited with my host when I was in Uganda in 2006, so this Lent I can tell you all about it! (I am however doubting if I have enough photo’s and can blog about it for every day in Lent, but we’ll see!!)
29% of Ugandan’s don’t have a supply of clean water, and today we are asked to give 5p for every tap in our house – if I count the hot and cold running water in our outside taps that’s 40p in the kitty from us today!
Pictured is a “tap”at the ‘model home’ run as part of the MU-FLP in Luwero, on the Gulu Road north of Kampala. It works by use of the foot pedal at the bottom, which tips up the gerry can without you needing to touch it. The soap is carefully attached on it’s own ledge. The stones underneath (collected from cultivated areas of the ‘model home’) mean that water drains away without being trampled into mud, and thus reducing the ‘taps’ attraction to flies and thus the spread of disease.
So, when you follow the #myblessings tag on Twitter to start counting your lenten blessing with Mothers’ Union, and as you turn a tap on today, remember how much thought and work goes into making a tap, for safe and hygienic drinking water in Uganda.