Reaching Uganda: Do MORE with Mondays with Amazima

8:41 AMHeather

Anyone else remember the MS Read-a-thon?  I was not an athletic child, so THAT was my kind of competition.  An avid reader, I was primed and ready to win.  And I often did.  Not that I'm bragging or anything. 

So, I find it a rare treasure when I read a book that is so impactful, so thought provoking that it changes me.  Have you ever come across such a book?  (I mean, besides the Bible)Long after you've put the book down, the lessons and thoughts and words continue to swirl around your mind, reaching into your heart.  Prompting you, haunting you--pressing you to action from what you've read.  

THIS is one such book.

I'm not such a trend setter when it comes to my reading material.  I tend to find an author I love and read everything they wrote.  After graduate school, I was rather ruined for anything besides some good fiction.  So, non-fiction books really aren't my genre.  Which means my stubborn and slow response often requires about a zillion people telling me I gotta read a particular book before I'll actually make the effort.

This was such a book.  Upteen times I heard about this book or saw someone reading it.  It was never at the library when I tried to check it out.  So, the thrifty girl that I am, I just waited until it was finally available at my local library.

It was worth the wait.

I cannot overstate this, bloggy friends.  READ this book.  In fact, you can actually get it on sale on the Christian book website.  C'mon--it'll be worth your $10.49.   I promise.  Not since I read Same Kind of Different as Me many years ago have I been so challenged by how one person lives their life.  How one person simply obeys a call, a leading, a God given desire--and God multiplies it to do amazing things.  Incredible things.  

It reminds me, once again, that I can be that one person, too.  Wherever my mission field is.  My home.  My community.  My neighborhood.  I can simply do what He wants me to do and reach out to others.  Then, He can bless my obedience and multiply it to eternal results.  All I have to do is be willing.  

Which Katie was.  The result of her move to Uganda to work with children for one year initially has become the incredible organization Amazima Ministries International. What began as a small movement of one American teenager going to volunteer in an orphanage has now become a multi-faceted ministry offering education, food, vocational training,  community outreach, and discipleship in the African country of Uganda. 

Trust me--after you read the book, these beautiful and impoverished people will become quite real to you.  And you will want to do something.  I think you'll find Katie's heart contagious.  I think you'll be moved to action.

There's something so incredible easy that you can do.  Right now, from your lap top.  It does not even involve a trip half-way around the world--just a click of your mouse.  As easy as that, you can be part of Katie's work.  You can be the arms that reach into the lives of those in need in Uganda.

Just buy one of the beautiful necklaces or bracelets.

These are made by the women in Uganda.  Many of whom live in the slums and just need someone to take the time to teach them a skill.  So they can feed their children.  Really.  You buy a unique and pretty necklace, and a mama in Africa is able to put food on the table for her family.  She gains dignity and self-respect and is loved in the process of teaching.  She sees her worth and her value.  It changes her.  It changes her children.  It changes her community.

That's it.  Pretty simple really.  

The necklaces are made from recycled magazine paper.  

You can order a multicolored one here.   Isn't it pretty?

Talk about a statement necklace.  It has a story to tell.  To you and to everyone who asks about it.  You gotta love that.  Check out this video to see how the necklaces and bracelets are made. 

If you want to do more than buy a necklace, you can also help support the work of Amazima in several other ways.  Katie, in fact, outlines 7 ways to help on the Amazima website here.  

To summarize, you can support a child for one year of education, food, and spiritual discipleship for $25 a month.   Friends--that means skipping one Starbucks weekly.  And you can change the life of a child by giving them a way out of the poverty they face.  And their family is impacted, as well, when the child is able to go to school. 

Or just donate to the ministry for their biggest needs.  Their feeding program in the slums.  Or their work to help fund medical treatment for those most needy.  Truly--the needs of the Ugandan people are so vast, any amount you give will be put good use.  Trust me--READ the BOOK and you'll have a heart for these people.  

Donate any amount you can here.   Gather up the change in your car or couches and skip Sonic happy hour in order to support Amazima.  

You can also help by spreading the word.  See how I brought it full circle? Back to that idea of buying a necklace so you can wear it and spread the message.  Or, like Amazima on Facebook.  Spread the word about Katie's book.  Support organizations that help these children to be fostered or adopted--organizations like Shaohannah's Hope or the Christian Alliance for Orphans.  

And, of course--pray for the efforts of Amazima.  The efforts of one American young lady who is making an incredible difference in an African country that she now calls homeWith her 13 adopted daughters.  

God may not be calling you to pick up and move to the African plains.  But you can be part of it from the comforts of your own little home.  Read the book.  Buy the necklace or two of them.  Send a bit of extra money.  And be part of kingdom work to change a nation.   Be part of the kisses from Katie.      

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