Tuesday, November 24, 2009

30 Days Until Christmas

May we please have a $10.00 donation?

Some people have asked us about a Christmas wish list. To be perfectly honest we have not been thinking of Christmas presents because we still need a lot of the basics. We were thinking a special Christmas dinner would be nice where we would buy some meat for dinner and maybe some sodas or have a cake for a special dessert. We don't have any toys or play things, and our soccer ball is on its last leg. All of the girls need dress shoes. A new outfit for each child would be a huge blessing. So here is what a small donation of $10.00 can do for us! Click on this link to donate now!http://hewillprovide.org/giving/financial_donation.php
A $10.00 donation equals about 20,000 Uganda Schillings. 20,000 shillings could provide any one of these items:

  • One Blanket
  • Seven Umbrellas
  • Two sets of Bed Sheets
  • Two Pillows
  • Eight Pairs of Flip Flops
  • One pair of boy's jeans, three pairs of socks and underwear
  • One skirt, slip, and bra
  • One pair of Girls shoes
  • 2 Sweaters or sweatshirts
  • Boys shirt, and undershirt
  • 1 pair of leather sandals

Other larger items that would be a blessing to this ministry are:

  • Solar powered lanterns for the dorms when power goes off
  • A generator for when power goes off
  • Computer
  • Refrigerator
  • Oven
  • Books
  • Video projector

Shipping items is not very practical as it takes two to three months to get here and it is very expensive. Are you interested in helping in another way? Then please let us know, because right now we don't have anything special planned for Christmas. You may contact Robyn directly with any ideas robynfruehan@yahoo.com


Anonymous said...

I'd encourage you guys to make christmas memorable however you can, even if you don't spend a lot of money on it. The expanse of basic needs that you just can't ever seem to meet all of may continue to be there for years, but the memories the kids will have from their special christmas celebration may last a lifetime. When you think back to your own childhood, its often those special days like birthday celebrations or Christmas that stand out as something you really rememmber, and not so much because you remember a single gift you got then, but because it was celebrated and memorable.

Perhaps you could do a "secret santa" gift exchange and give each of the kids a small amount of money (say 1000 shillings) to pick out a small gift for who's name they drew out of a hat (ideas: candy, costume jewelery, school notebooks, etc). If wrapping paper isn't in the budget, maybe butcher paper leftover from other purchases would do, or even used newspaper works.

Maybe you could make it a project to decorate with the kids. I remember cutting paper into strips and gluing them into chains of loops in elementary school to make christmas decorations. Making paper snowflakes would be another one that doesn't take a lot of supplies. Is there a tree in the yard you could decorate for christmas? Or even just collect interesting branches and tie them together into a bush or tree in the house, and make christmas decorations. You remember all those craft idea books we used to read as kids with things you could make out of toilet paper rolls and scissors and markers or crayons? Tell me a tree full of those sort of ornaments wouldn't make you smile... And if you can't find enough branches to build a tree, take a big sheet of paper and tape it to the wall and draw a christmas tree and decorate it with crayons.

For added fun, "Santa" could always surprise the kids on christmas morning with a gift of a necessity item they've been neeeding anyway. Of course the items should be wrapped in some way so they get the surprise of opening their package, even if its not wrapped in "nice" wrapping paper.

Also, Oranges are a very traditional christmas gift--something sweet they aren't used to seeing every day. Yes, I'm sure they'd be more expensive than bananas would, but would probably be quite enjoyed as a novel treat.

Or maybe for desert you could make home-made hot cocoa...melt some plain chocolate candy bars with hot milk and water, add a little cinnamon, and a dash of paparika if you have it...

teach the kids some traditional christmas carols and sing christmas carols. I know those kids love to sing. Maybe even go christmas caroling around your neighborhood! Perhaps even play some christmas music for them as background music during christmas celebrations, with your computer speakers (presuming of course that the power is cooperative).

Perhaps you could even delve into other holiday traditions and make latkes (potato pancakes) when hannukah falls--I know they have potatoes in Uganda, but I'd be willing to bet they've never grated them into pancakes before. Or even just a treat like hash-browned potatoes with christmas dinner. A hand-grater is not expensive and potatoes and butter/margerine are easy to find. I imagine you could even make stove-top type of stuffing out of sliced bread to go with your christmas chicken ;-)

Jessica said...

And how could I forget Christmas stockings! Of course, you'll probably have to do it the traditional way with a regular stocking rather than a fancy american decorated one.

Great opportunity to discuss with the kids holiday traditions from around the world.

And candles are a very traditional christmas decoration as well. Can any of the kids sew? Scrap remnants from the tailor could be sewn into fun shapes or embroidered to make ornaments. And since those fabric scraps are usually too small to make things like dresses out of, they could probably be come by pretty cheap I'd imagine. If any of the kids are particularly good craftsmen, perhaps they could make ornaments of some sort that could be sold as a fundraiser (or even just sold to pay for the supplies to get to enjoy such a hobby!)

Jessica said...

Even more ideas:

Read traditional christmas stories and poems and talk about what they mean and how other cultures celebrate christmas. (think: twas the night before Christmas)

Have the children have a christmas limmerick or poetry contest

Make your own board games. Aquire a die (or dice) from another board game or a toy shop in town. Draw the board for a familiar game (checkers, go, chutes and ladders, parchesi, etc) on notebook paper, and make pawns out of pebbles, bottle caps, or other found objects around the house. A mancala set could be made with part of an egg tray and a couple margarine dishes and pebbles.

As part of your christmas day festivities and activities, teach the kids party games that don't require extensive supplies, like charades or pictionary

Have an "exotic" food sampling activity. Purchase small quantities a few "luxury" items from the grocery that you wouldn't normally serve because they are not economical enough to serve regularly (eg: canned pineapple, cranberry sauce, american candies, an apple, cheese, candy bar, raisins, koko krunch cereal, jello, etc). slice or divide items up into bite small sized pieces. Each person gets one bite of each "exotic" food, and then everyone get to vote on their favorites. Any leftovers can be divided up by all participants, or used for toppings on dinner or other meals.

Be festive by wearing as much red and green as you can on christmas.

Have the children write thank you letters to their sponsors about what they are thankful for in this season of celebration. Scan and email or post to the blog either all of them or your favorites.

Make no-bake or stove-top cooked christmas cookies or fudge.

Can you get food coloring for reasonable prices in UGanda? (if not, that would be a fun extra to ask for the next time you have a missionary visit or a team member takes a trip to the states) Even a couple drops of color in ordinary food could make a holiday meal extra festive.

Have the kids had scrambled eggs for breakfast before? Could be a holiday treat... What about apple juice? Make hot apple cider... Or even just do a treat like everyone gets rolexes for lunch :)

Can you get marshmellows at the grocery store? With a bit of margerine and puffy cereal of any type, You could make rice krispy treats for the holiday.

Have an activity where you have each person write their name on a piece of paper, then every other person writes something nice about that person or that they admire about that person on that sheet of paper (the person who's paper it is should not read it yet). Fold the pieces of paper up and "unwrap" them and each person can read theirs on christmas morning.

working up to christmas day, or on christmas day read the "christmas story" from Luke. Share also some of your american traditions that are not in the bible about the christmas story as well.

Make a manger out of scrap cardboard, paper, or whatever is available to decorate for the holiday. Animals and people could be made out of twigs, wire, scrap packaging material, or drawn on the backside of cardboard packaging (use leftover cardboard and scissors to make stands so they stand up. etc.

Yogurt would be a fabulous christmas treat. The yogurt in Masaka is soooo good too! Add ripe sliced bananas or cereal flakes to get really fancy.

Have you made fajitas before? I'd imagine you could make them with local ingredients. Or what about french toast? (From what I remember you and Robyn make really fabulous french toast!) Maybe Christmas would be a fun time to try an american "treat" they haven't had before.

Jessica said...

Invite neighbors or friends over for a christmas play. Have the children act out their own rendition of the Christmas story or make up their own play about christmas. The children could use bed-sheets or blankets as traditional robes for their costumes. Sheets or other bedding strung across a clothes line could also be used as curtains between acts.

You could try to replicate (as close as is within reason considering local availability) a traditional "american" christmas dinner. chicken could be substituted for turkey. Add side dishes like mashed potatoes and stove-top "roasted" stuffing, green beans or squashes, a "green salad" made out of carrots, tomatoes, cabbage, etc with an oil and vinegar dressing.

make garland out of paperclips or rubber bands. After the holidays you can unstring the paperclips or rubber bands to reuse them for household purposes.

create a small budget to make some sort of gift baskets with necessities like rice or motooke. Give these away on christmas to widows or other very needy individuals, so the children can share the spirit of christmas with others whose needs are greater than their own.

Mrs. Bushey said...

I blogged about you guys! I hope it brings you new donations for this holiday season! I know every little bit helps!
James and Melissa

Holly Renee said...

Wow, I know I am late coming to this post (by about 6 months LOL) but it's amazing to see how much $10.00 can help. This really puts things in perspective.