Newsletter by nyut545e2


    Spring 2010
                                                                     Welcome to the 5th edition of the Chilli
                                                                     Children Newsletter
                                                                     The ChilliChildren Trust raises and channels funds to
                                                                     support the North Kigezi Diocese Growers’ Orphans’ and
                                                                     Disabled Children’s Project in SW Uganda

    Becky’s Year for the
                                                                   My main aim was to really LEARN as much as I could
                                                                   about the Project and especially about the families we
    Dear Chilli Friends, as I write I am in Rukungiri,             help. I saw mud homes in which many families live,
                                                                   with their plot of land growing bananas – and hopefully
    thunder rumbles overhead and we are on day 2 of                chilli. These home plots I then saw replicated on every
    a total power blackout. Often it's on and off so you           patch of land all over this rural, hilly region, approx the
    can hope to get something done but with total                  size of Cornwall, with only a handful of tarmac roads.
    blackouts we can't email, do accounts or typing                The distance to Rukungiri town for some is over 3 hours
    and our phone batteries are dying. But at least the            so, whilst this town is considered a backwater in
    iridescent birds with curved beaks are chirping                Kampala, to local villagers its a truly cosmopolitan hub!
    away outside to brighten things up.
                                                                   Mobility is a major factor for families here: can a mum
                                                                   travel from her village to town then to Kampala and find
    This is my second visit within a year dedicated to the         a specialist for her brain damaged child? Does a rural
    Project and the Trust. Since founding the Trust in 2004,       family have access to a 'cash crop' market? Suddenly
    its been a 'spare time' thing. The Trust has developed         the importance of motorbikes, a chilli truck and a
    into a small charity capable of just about sustaining the      knowledge of the people and places, all came into
    Project in Uganda. By Autumn 2008, we had 6 Trustees           sharp focus. I visited a Life Skills’ clinics under a tree
    and many questions arose: what is this or that child's         run by the mums and dads supporting each other; I saw
    situation? How do chilli growing and the disability            the deaf unit full with 50 kids, many of whom are
    programme work together? What are the Project's                growing chilli; Jones healing club foot at his mobile
    future needs? These were difficult to answer over              clinic; chilli buying at a local church; taking heart
    phone calls to Uganda. For me, I had spent over 3              patients to Kampala; surgical camps at Kisiizi.
    years at my job and felt in need of a change, I turned
    30 – another reality check! - and a life ambition to live in   I saw this Project as a light of hope shining brightly in
    Africa, all meant Uganda was calling me louder and             people's eyes. On 5th May, as we arrived at Rwanyanja
    LOUDER!                                                        church 2hrs north of Rukungiri town with a view out to
                                                                   Lake Edward (where there be elephants!), I stepped out
    Then the financial crisis hit, my company advertised           of the chilli truck and saw the big men of our team
    voluntary redundancies and the opportunity was on a            embracing chilli farming grandmas as if they were their
    plate but fears held me back: losing a secure job, giving      own aunties! (See the photo on page 4.) Such joy to
    up a rented flat, going on my own. Friends and family          see us, and to be selling chilli! These grandmas have
    stepped in offering spare beds, a shed for my things           managed a few kilos each gaining £2-£6, enough to buy
    and advice: “you only have one life, live it!”. The            uniform and exercise books for the children in their
    decision became easy and by February ‘09 I was in              care, vital tools for education and eventual success in
    Rukungiri for a 6 month stretch.                               life.

                                           Becky’s year for the

                                           project (contd)

                                           By Becky Thorn

                                           People are so grateful that people
                                           from the UK are supporting them
                                           through the Project. At the surgical
                                           camp at Kisiizi hospital in April I
                                           spoke to families and told them
                                           about how much people in the UK
                                           are appreciating what they are
                                           doing for their own children. And
                                           that there is in fact something they
                                           can give back too. They sat
                                           puzzled, quiet in expectation. I said
                                           not everyone in UK is happy,
                                           despite everything we might have,
                                           but seeing your smiles really makes
                                           us joyous, at which they all beamed!
                                           You can see some of their smiles
                                           and gratefulness in the short film I     Photos: the April surgery camp in 2009 (above). The photos on the front page
                                           made in August. The group at the         show Becky being given a gift of mangos by a grateful mum and the Project team
                                           end of film are from that camp           with Becky. The photo on the back page shows the chilli grandmas of Rwanyanja
                                           saying 'May God Bless You All!'          in May 2009.
                                            The film can be seen via our
                                           website or is now available to
                                           purchase on DVD (highly                  admin in London. Thanks here, and         Whilst here, I've experienced an
                                           recommended for fundraising              all through my UK stay, to friends        historic moment within North Kigezi
                                           groups). DVDs are only £3 please         and family who put me up! Without         Diocese, the return of Pat Gilmer
                                           contact Susie by email to order          whose generosity I could not have         MBE, founder of our Project and
                                           yours or fill out an order form          achieved this.                            involved in leprosy and other work
                                             I really enjoyed my 6 months in         By December, I was back in               here since the 1960s! Now better
                                           Uganda and felt I had gained a           Uganda, knowing that I had follow         from knee operations, Pat returned
                                           clear insight into the need of this      up work to do in January and then         after 4 years’ absence on 22nd
                                           Project for thousands of orphaned        deciding to have a Rukungiri              December. We travelled together
                                           and disabled children in this rural      Christmas! So here I am on this           from Kampala in the aging
                                           region of an Africa desperate to         second shorter visit, bearing             ambulance and arrived in the solid
                                           better itself despite the great scars    through thunderstorms and                 darkness of a real Ugandan night.
                                           left by dictators, AIDS and              mosquito bites in highly undesirable      Emerging from that blackness to
                                           instability.                             places! I'm helping Evas, Project         greet her with singing and hugs,
                                             Returning to the UK in July, it was    Manager, to make a budget for             were all of the Project team
                                           wonderful to see family and friends      2010 and working with Warren,             including her longest-serving
                                           who I had missed greatly. But            Chilli manager, to see what we need       colleague Abraham, 82, currently
                                           instead of settling again I knew I       to build the capacity of all our chilli   the cook at Kisiizi Rehab Unit. Pat
                                           needed to tell our supporters what I     farmers to really help them with          will be staying in Kampala for part of
                                           had witnessed. So from September         their biggest cost: secondary             this year before returning to
                                           to November I toured round:              schooling (not free here) at around       Lanarkshire. She will remain, as she
                                           Kirkmuirhill, Larne, Belfast,            £150 per year. Can our granny-            has been, as Consultant to the
                                           Southport, Leek, Stoke Gifford,          farmers manage this? We think they        Project which is a great blessing
                                           Bisley & West End,                       can with the right help from us!          with her vast experience!
                                           Godmanchester, Cheltenham and            Increasing the yield will also mean         After this year in Uganda, I can
                                           Kensworth, with frequent trips back      that the chilli programme is better       see why Pat was moved to keep
                                           to Hitchin for root canal work! Sorry    able to sustain itself as well its        serving the people for over 40
                                           if I didn't visit you, please get in     farmers.                                  years. Although it's not been easy,
                                           touch and I hope I can fix a visit for     I'll be returning to UK in February     it's a work of faith but not
                                           2010. On tour, I heard the words I       as my money is running out but I          unrewarded faith. God's love is all
                                           was desperate for: “Yes, we will         will continue to be Trust Co-             people talk about here, even when
                                           continue to support Chilli Children”!    ordinator in my spare time and            they have very little, and you know
                                           Alleluia!                                continue to assist the Project team       that love is real because it radiates
                                             November I caught up with some         in any way I can.                         out of them.

2009 Annual Report of                     Half marathon, full effort New year, new website

                                                                                                                             CHILLICHILDRENNEWSLETTER Spring 2010
Project Statistics                        by Jenny Holland                  
                                          We are very grateful to Chilli          by Jenny Holland
                                          Children supporter, Debbie Lockett,     We’re pleased to announce the
Compiled by: Nelson Mugabi,                                                       launch our bigger and better website.
                                          for choosing to fundraise for us in
The Project’s Records Officer                                                     Developed throughout 2009 this site
                                          her first half marathon last October.
                                                                                  now offers more information and
                                                                                  resources for our supporters. You
• 5 surgical camps: 3 orthopaedic                                                 can now find sections on The
(Feb, May & Nov) and 2 Plastic (April                                             Project, Trustees, How to help,
& Aug) all at Kisiizi Hospital.                                                   News, Gallery and useful website
• 114 children operated on in the                                                 links.
camps.                                                                              Read all about our latest news via a
• 54 referrals to specialist hospitals:                                           link on the homepage to our blog,
i.e. Heart cases (8-10 patients                                                   which is an online diary with regular
receive drugs quarterly),                                                         updates on what we’re up to. We’ve
Hydrocephalus, Spina bifida, ENT                                                  also got links to our Facebook group
cases etc. (Children traveling from                                               where you can ‘become a fan’ and
Rukungiri to Kampala or beyond.)                                                  connect with other supporters; and
• 1001 new disabled children                                                      Twitter where Trustee Becky sends
registered in 2009, 8784 disabled                                                 news snippets while out and about.
children registered since ’95 from the                                            Our gallery of photos is growing all
4 main districts (Rukungiri, Kanungu,     Debbie and friends started a running    the time and shows all aspects of the
Kabale and Kisoro).                       club for fun, in their home town        project team’s work, from chilli
• 3 clubfoot clinics held each week,      Coventry,                               growing to surgery camps, plus
2 fixed in Kihiihi and in Rukungiri (at    We decided to challenge ourselves      photos of the project team and
office) and 1 mobile clinic.              to do the Coventry Half Marathon.       trustees. Why not download these
• 9 Life Skills’ Clinics held each        Debbie explains, “I chose to raise      for a Chilli Children display?
month; 6 in Kanungu District (Kirima,     money for Chilli Children because         Donating is now easier, with links to
Nyamwegabira, Kihembe, Butogota,          I’ve been following their great work    donating online, or forms to
Kihihi and Rusoroza) and 3 in             and have wanted to contribute for a     download. Our supporters can
Rukungiri District (office, Bugangari,    while.”                                 download a variety of useful
Nyabubale).                                  Debbie completed the 13.1 mile       fundraising materials including
• 30 children receiving epileptic         run in 2 hours, 33 minutes. She         posters, leaflets and sponsorship
drugs from the office 4 times a year.     asked family and friends to sponsor     forms.
(5-6 containers of 1000 tablets of        her via the Just Giving website. It       Also, on the homepage you’ll find a
200mg are used).                          was a big success and she raised        link to our film, which you can watch
• 50 deaf pupils at Nyakibale Lower       £370 for Chilli Children! This amount   online. It shows touching stories of
Primary School were looked after in       will help pay for five bikes to be      children who have been helped by
the boarding unit.                        serviced to allow the staff to to get   Chilli Children, as well as clips of the
• 20 other School, Tertiary and           out on the run too!                     Project Team. See how teenager
University students with disabilities.       Well done Debbie! To find out how    Isaac’s life has been changed
• 2000 Chilli farmers’ families           you can fundraise for us, visit ‘How    through chilli farming, and how a
(approx 80% care for orphans, 20%         to help’ on our website:                mother, Joyce, finds hope for her two
for disabled children).                                                           disabled girls. The film was made
• Chilli sacks collected:
                                                                                  using video clips and photos taken
  1st Season 2009 = 78 sacks (in                                                  by Becky and others on their visits to
  March)                                                                          Uganda, which have been edited
  2nd Season 2009 = 85 sacks (in          If you have a fundraising story you
                                          would like to share with us please      together on a home computer. We
  Sept) each sack weighs 35kg                                                     hope that the film gives insight to
                                          contact Susie at
                                          how Chilli Children helps and just
                                                                                  how far your donations go.
Thanks to a long-term supporter: Sheila Forrest
From the mid 60’s Sheila has been involved as an individual and as part of
her church supporting the work of Pat Gilmer (Chilli Children’s Founder).
  What has inspired Sheila to continue supporting the work of the project?
“It’s the great need”, she says “and how inspiring it is what is being done.
Especially with money being so tight for them. Warren and Evas cover long
distances over roads that we would find hard to imagine.”
  As a pensioner keeping her car on the road is a struggle but in comparison
she would consider herself wealthy. She feels we take so much for granted
like free schooling. It’s because of Sheila’s gratitude and deep desire to
help, that twice a year she gathers up the collection boxes that people in the    Thank you to the Holland family and
church continue to generously fill. St Aidan & St Silas, Cheltenham, Shelia’s for donating their time to
church, has also this year fundraised with a harvest supper. To Sheila and        help make the new site and film.
all at St Aidan & St Silas a great big thank you!                       

                                        Project prayer requests
                                                                                                                        Chilli Children Trust
                                        Project verse for 2010
                                        How good is the God we adore.                                                   UK Charity No 1106601
                                        Our faithful and Unchangeable
                                        friend; We praise Him for all that's
                                        past and Trust Him for all that's to                                            Trust Co-ordinator:
                                        come!                                                                           Becky Thorn
                                                   Joseph Hart (1712-1768)
                                                                                                                        Barclay Bank
                                        Prayer requests:
                                                                                                                        account no: 008 488 83
                                        - For God to remain the centre of                                               Sort Code: 20-84-17
                                          our hope for funding sources... He
                                          has been there for us and we can                                              Cheques payable to:
                                          trust Him ... He is more than able!                                           “Chilli Children of Rukungiri
                                        - Good health for all involved in the
                                        - Continuity and strengthening of
                                          the friendship between us all;                                                Donations to:
                                          community served, project                                                     Treasurer
                                          supporters worldwide and project                                              c/o Susie Bishop
                                                                                                                        100 North Rd, Stoke
                                        - Pray for safety for us all, and more    Thanks to our loyal and
                                          especially Warren and children on                                             Gifford, Bristol BS34 8PE
                                          long driving trips.                     generous supporters the Chilli        Sending a donation form helps
                                        - Pray for Pat as she continues to beTrust has weathered the recession          us with our records.
                                          the project consultant; Praise God and gone from strength to strength.        These may be downloaded
                                          for her great work... .            In terms of donations received we
                                                                                                                        from our website.
                                        - Prayer for wisdom and good         have enjoyed a wonderful year and
                                          management for the trustees and    every penny has been sent to
                                          their work in the UK.              Uganda to support the Project.             Correspondance address:
                                        - Pray that God will provide the right
                                                                             Some supporters have evolved               Susie Bishop
                                                                             some very 'original' ways of raising
                                          people to fill the posts of treasurer
                                                                             funds. In North Waltham, Hampshire,        Supporters’ Co-ordinator
                                          and secretary.
                                                                             local organiser Lois Lang started a        100 North Road,
                                        NB: Praise God for Becky's second series of Vanishing Tea Parties and           Stoke Gifford, Bristol
                                        visit she is amazing and the Project then at Christmas, instead of              BS34 8PE
                                        loves and appreciates her great      sending cards, members of the
                                        ideas. Remember everybody's          congregation published their
                                        efforts and be blessed.              Christmas Greetings in the parish
                                                                             magazine and donated very
                                        Evas (Project Manager)               generously to the Chilli Trust.
                                                                             Graham Carr (treasurer)

                                                                                    STOP PRESS     STOP PRESS        STOP PRESS          STOP PRESS

                                       Are you able to give regularly? This really is a Stop Press. We've            support is waining, in fact it's getting
                                                                          spent months putting this newsletter       better! Although some churches have
                                         £5 per month would buy, for      together but just as we're sending it to   moved on to other projects. But the
                                         example, a bus fare for a        the printers we've heard that the          worst problem is inflation in Uganda, it
                                         mum and her baby so we can situation in Uganda is not good. The             shot up by 12% last year and prices
                                         get her to a medical             money that we've just sent to the          continue to rise. Please please we
                                         specialist; £50 per month        Project for April, May and June is not     need you to put your thinking caps on
                                         ensures one chilli field officer going to be enough to cover their          and think what you can do!
                                                                          usual activity. The May surgery camp       The Challenge: £2,000 from another
                                         gets to support families in all will probably have to be cancelled,         10 groups over the next year or £5
                                         rural corners. Please fill in a  there's not enough to buy the drugs        extra per month from each individual.
                                         standing order form available for the heart patients, David's               What could you do? Please get in
                                         to download from our website motorbike needs some serious                   touch to find out more about the
                                         or contact us to post you one. repairs and Evas has had to cut out          situation and how we can support
                                         Thank you so much for            the budget for extra fuel needed for       your efforts. Email
                                         considering making this          teaching families sign language to
                                         commitment.                      help them communicate with their           or write to Susie Bishop (address
                                                                          deaf children. Why? It's not that          above).                    Thank you.
                                                                                                                                               Becky Thorn


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