Sunday, February 4, 2018

Preparing the Ground

Pastor Adam, Tanner, Shelby, and John
planting seedlings in trays
Hello again from Uganda!  It's been an Amazing month.  We had 3 more people from the USA join us on January 8th.  John from North Dakota stayed for just under 2 weeks.  The other 2, Tanner from North Dakota and Shelby from North Carolina, are still with us.

Tanner was able to bring Bibles that were
donated by Churches in ND
Shelby was able to speak at a
youth conference at True Vine

John is an experienced farmer that also has experience working with farmers in Haiti.  He is the president of an organization known as Friends of IFOSuD.  He brought with him a large supply of seeds for us to plant that were given to us by Hope Seeds.  He also brought materials to build drip line systems for irrigation that were donated by Chapin Living Waters.  Tanner has recently finished college with a degree in electrical engineering and has decided to spend 6 months serving with us before he returns to the states to find a job and start his career.  Shelby has decided to spend 3 months serving with us as part of her "gap year" internship program through UNC Chapel Hill where she will begin her freshman year in August.

Tanner, Shelby, and John at the
training in Jinja
Soon after they arrived we attended a 3 day training in Jinja for type of farming called "Farming God's Way".  After the training we got started on the garden that we will be planting across the road from Victor's Junior Christian School.  In the garden we will be growing vegetables for the children at the school.  The ground was tilled before we started, but we have had very littler rain here for the past 3 months, so we still had our work cut out for us.  We had help from several laborers, and the men that True Vine has put in charge of managing the garden.  We formed 16 raised beds that are 25 feet long.  We also put up stands to hold buckets for the drip line irrigation.  During that same week we tilled and put some drip lines in a garden located at the orphan home that is operated by True Vine.

Pic with Tanner, John, myself, and all the guys
that helped us turn a hill of dirt into a garden

During John's time here we went to Kampala to find good maize seed for the upcoming planting season, in which we will be planting 50 acres of maize on True Vine's land.  We found the seed at a company called Balton.  While we were meeting with the saleslady at Balton, we discussed several of the projects we are doing, including the garden for the school.  They recommended we put one of their greenhouses on the land to ensure a better harvest of vegetables with a longer growing season.  We discussed it among the ranks of PUR International and the leaders of True Vine.  It was decided that the greenhouse would be good to add to the garden because it would help to ensure the sustainability of the whole project.  So, before John left to go home, we purchased a greenhouse from Balton.

Shelby, one of the boys at the orphan
home, and the drip irrigation

The week after John left, we picked up the materials for the greenhouse, and got the land ready for installation.  Balton sent a technician to help us put it together.  By that weekend we had it under roof.  On Monday of the next week we hooked up the irrigation lines, installed a 500 liter water tank, and formed raised beds on the inside of the house. 

Putting up the frame of the greenhouse.

Inside of the greenhouse after roof was on.

Everything in the house is now ready.  All that is left is for the National Water Service to hook up a water line and we are in business.  This week we will be going to Kampala for training on how to run the greenhouse.  After finishing the greenhouse we went back to the orphan home and spent 2 days tilling up the rest of the plantable land that they have there.  We also planted some watermelon seeds at the garden next to the school.

Soda treat after a long day of digging in the dirt

That leads us to where we are now.  We've done a lot of hard work, and gotten a lot done.  I keep saying "we", but please know that when I say that, I mean us (the Muzungus) and the people from True Vine that have been working with us.  We (PUR) are doing most of the funding for these projects, but True Vine takes care of the labor and management.  We help where we can, but we (the Kanagy's, interns, and team members that come) are here for support and for building lasting relationships.  The ministry of True Vine could accomplish all of these projects on their own if they only had the financial resources. 

Shelby and Cyprian digging post holes.
Cyprian will be managing both the gardens
and the greenhouse

We trust this ministry.  We have seen good fruit from many of the projects they have done on their own.  It is obvious to us (PUR) that they have been good stewards with the little that they have.  We (PUR) believe that they will be faithful if we give them more, and many more people will be exposed to the Love of Jesus Christ as a result of our partnership.  Some may ask, "If all they need is the finances, why spend the money to bring people there from the US?"  The shortest way that we know to answer that question is to say, "We (PUR and True Vine) see the value in relationship and working along side each other."  It is our opinion that it is not enough just to give money.  It is so encouraging to these people when we not only give money, but also give time and effort.  Most people here have never seen a white person swing a hoe.  They have now baby!  We've got the blisters to prove it!

This is how they till the ground in Uganda.

Yes, all the white people are tired and sitting down.

Right now we (PUR) are in a stage where we are "Preparing the Ground".  We are still establishing and strengthening the foundation of our relationship with True Vine.  Every day we are learning more and more about each other, and how we will work together best.  We are still a distance away from seeing the fruit from all we are doing.  The ground in the gardens doesn't have many seeds in it yet.  The chicks have been delivered to the chicken house, but they are not close to being ready to lay eggs yet.  We have had only a few people come over from the US to help us. 

James is the manager of the chicken house.
This is the day the 2,300 chicks were delivered.

This is also of the chicken house.  Needed this one
to prove that Heidi does get out of the house.

Although we still aren't sure how much fruit we will get from all of what we are doing, we are continuing to move forward.  The foundation is continuing to grow, and we are expectant of a great harvest.  If you've seen some of John Crist's YouTube videos on missionaries and mission trips, they are hilarious.  They are great for exposing some of the issues with short-term missions and present day missionaries.  We don't want to be an organization that misuses the resources we've been given.  We have been careful to include the leadership of True Vine in our decision making, and we will continue to do so.  They are continually grateful for everything we are doing, and many people are communicating to us what a Blessing we are to them.

The kids at the orphan home love all of us,
but I think they like Tanner best.

Tanner, Emma, Cyprian, and some guy.
We call Emma the Ugandan Machine because he
does the workof three men.

We believe that the results of all the time, money, and effort that have been put into these projects are going to impact the lives of thousands of Ugandans, and that they will be self-sustaining for years to come.  Thank you to those of you who have continued to follow us, and believe in what we are doing.  Thank you to those that have invested.  To those of you that are interested giving of your time, money, and effort by coming to serve with us here in Uganda, feel free to Contact Us and let us know.  We would love to plan a trip for you, or have you join a trip that is already being planned.  If you just want to know more about who we are or what we are doing you can read the other posts on this blog, or browse through Our Website.

No caption necessary.  It's just a cute picture.

Thanks again for reading this.  We Love and miss all of our family and friends back home.  All of you who miss us should know that we are surrounded by some really Amazing people who Love us well.  Every day we walk in the fulfillment of knowing that we are right where God wants us to be.  Thank you for your prayers!  Much Love!

The Kanagys

There has to be at least one picture with all of us in it.