Student Leaders: SPRINT

Summer 2011 SPRINT Teams: Uganda

Trip Dates: August 1-30

Project Description:
Working with Development Companions International, an organization which focuses on community development ministries through indigenous churches including community health, adult literacy education, and church leadership development, students will experience ministry in rural Uganda by working alongside DCI’s ministry team. Students will have opportunities to stay in village homes and experience African culture.

Development Companions International

View a digital story from Development Companions.

Team Updates

August 30

Here's an update from Jonathan Beggs at DCI.  The rest o the team will return home today - Addison will return later in September.

Thanks for your support of this team!


The staff enjoyed seeing them off.  We were in the café upstairs waving at
them on the plane, they were on the cell phone and waving and flipping their
window shades up and down.  Nice sendoff.

Addison is heading back to Kapchorwa today to start hospital volunteering
tomorrow.  After 5 days of that, he'll switch to chemistry teaching in a
high school and in the afternoons volunteering in a health clinic.  We might
try to squeeze in a tour of a couple of hospitals in different parts of the
country to assess their non-profit models and their community success.


August 27

The leadership seminar was great.  The SPU SPRINT students were able to present during the PCM leadership seminar in Kapchorwa.  The PCM pastors Study Center was launched, this is a place where leaders from different churches come to study and read the Bible and Christian literature.  Most pastors from the PCM have never been to formal pastoral trainings.  Having the center for them to study is a great opportunity for the pastors to access leadership materials.   

Also, we finally handed over the hospital supplies that the SPRINT team brought from the United States.  Patients normally buy their own supplies when they come to the hospital.  The supplies that the team brought will save the patients over $1,000.  We supplied the hospital with prep trays, absorbable and non-absorbable sutures, Tru-cut Biopsy Needle, urinary drainage needles, stethoscopes, blood pressure pumps, catheter holder, gloves and adhesive.

The SPRINT team is now ready to come back to the United States.  Yesterday morning we hiked to the top of MT. Sawuryako to watch the sun rise, it was slightly cloudy but we saw God’s beauty, it was wonderful to remember the goodness of the Lord. We don’t feel like parting with the team.  We have seen God move in many ways, the locals have developed such a relationship with the team, and we hope that they will surely come back.

Today, we are debriefing, cooking, relaxing and enjoying our last time together before the team takes off.  

On behalf of Perfection Church and Ministry (PCM) local indigenous churches, I thank you all who had a part to play in sending SPRINT Uganda team.  We feel honored and pray for the Lord's protection and provision upon your lives.

May the Lord’s peace be with you!



August 22

The homestays for each pair of the team have been very enlightening, both for the ministry in Uganda and for the Seattle Pacific University team.  During the homestays, SPU students were asked to interview graduates from the Adult Literacy Education (ALE), interview new students who are currently in class and also participate in the teaching process with the ALE teacher.

I have spoken with different host families.  Some of them felt very privileged to host an American in their house. Initially, the local people would view Americans as these “rich people”, very successful in life and perfect in their lifestyle.  Some used to think that Americans are nearer to God.  When I met some host families, there perception swiftly changed.  They came to a realization that we are all humans but just with different skin color.  The cool thing is that, the team carried water on their heads just like any other Ugandan, ate food like any other Ugandan and slept in huts like anyone in Uganda.  The local’s perspective was quite different after the contact with the SPRINT students. 

The local’s perception of Americans has begun to change. 

Douglas, one man who hosted the students said “I had such a great time with the Americans and I wish they could stay for long.  The American students went to the kitchen, cooked in the firewood stoves, with a lot of smoke and felt very free interacting with family. I asked for recommendations from the Americans so I can make my house more hospitable”. 

In a lot of ways, we have changed the traditional concept of missions.  We have also influenced women who had never been to school and are having to go through the ALE program.  Women who went to ALE and eventually graduated are encouraged to apply the skills they learnt from school.  Americans are working alongside Ugandans to build confidence in the local areas, be influential in bringing about change.  We are silently being a part of a change.  We are engaging culture and changing the world. 

August 16

Dear friends,

The community outreaches have been awesome.  We have raised  a lot of health awareness within Kapchorwa communities.  The team is out in different villages interacting with adult literacy students.  We dropped the team members in Kween district, Bukwo district and eventually in Tingey area.  Laura and Margaret went to Kween where they will go to Kwanyiy adult literacy class, Kabelyo adult literacy class and Chekwasta (my home area).  Sefanit and Sammy went to Bukwo district while Claudia and Holly went to Ng’eng’e, Korite and Tuban centers.

Addison and I will go to Sipi, Amukul, Mbale and back to Kapchorwa town. 

We are scheduled to visit my family on Saturday after all the outreaches are done.   Next week will be launching of the Perfection Church and Ministry pastors study center. 

During the time when we dropped the team members at different points, the trip was one of akind.  We hired a four-wheel pick up truck.  The soils in Kapchorwa are very soft and vehicles often get stuck.  We were lucky to have the four-wheel car. On our way to our destinations, we dropped at a wedding.   We had initially hoped that there would be a wedding so the team gets to experience Ugandan styles of marriage.  This was a combined traditional engagement and a wedding at the same time. So it was a fun time except for long speeches and the long manner of recognizing the presence of clan members.

We were back on the road and as soon as it was close to the time to drop Margaret and Laura, it rained so heavily.  We had bought a top for just in case there was rain.  The top helped cover folks who were seated at the back of the truck.   It kept raining until we were on our way to drop Sammy and Sefanit.  We occasionally helped vehicles stuck in the mud.

The route we used is at the sides of slopes of Mountain Elgon.  Little did we know that the water from up the mountain would settle and flood down the plains.  Our next stop after Sefanit and Sammy was flooded.  Addison, Paul, Jabez, Moses (driver) and I got stuck several times and eventually got home 24 hours after we had left Kapchorwa town.   We did not sleep at all.  My parents and I needed to be in Kampala to meet up with Dr. Poole who is a board member at Leadership Advancement International.  So, there was basically no time for sleep.  I am now in Kampala but headed back to Kapchorwa today.

I thank all of you who have been standing with us in prayer. Please continue praying with us.  The magnitude of the team’s presence in Uganda is phenomenon.  There is a lot of energy being built in Perfection Church and  Ministry  that is great for the future of ministry in the local churches.

Thank you again,


August 12

In the last two days we have been engaged in a community outreach/field work.  On our first day, we developed assessment tools to help us gather some useful information pertaining to health.  On Wednesday, we went to Kwoti health center where we surveyed three villages.  We sampled 3-4 homes in each village to analyze if they adhere to 14-points of an ideal village home.  We developed 14-points of an ideal home, went around and taught villagers.  After every fieldwork, we bring  the community together to present about our findings and demonstrate how they can improve their household health, community health and personal hygiene.

To ease the translation between the students and the villagers, we provided escorts who also are community leaders.  When I met one of the community leaders, he said “after you did the 14-points of an ideal home, we were talking about how brave the SPU students are,  the students demonstrated how well we can manage our health”.  Whenever the community gathers at the drinking joints (local brew social events), there is nothing to talk about except how the visitors engaged them in the health exercise.

This is fundamental in the Perfection Church and Ministry (PCM) Churches.   Our future health volunteers will find it very easy in doing follow ups and in reminding the community about their health.  The SPRINT students have paved way, built confidence and raised self-esteem for our community.

August 9

Dear friends,

Yesterday was a great day! The SPRINT team went to Kapchorwa's main hospital.  Dr. Elieza, who doubles as the district health inspector and the hospital superintendent, allowed the students to work alongside nurses. 

First, we toured the hospital under Juliet (senior nursing officer).  Then, we were distributed in pairs to go to several units.  Holy and I were stationed at the maternal clinic.  At the maternal clinic, Holy and I observed the delivery of two babies. I have never seen such a thing in my life.  One baby had a normal delivery while the other had a cesarean. 

When we walked into our unit a Muslim lady was crawling on the floor as labor pains intensified.  She was groaning and occasionally screaming, as the pains got worse.  Since she was an experienced mother, she did not take long to push the baby.  Holy and I were asked to examine to tell the number of weeks the baby was in the womb.   We examined the head of the baby as the baby was about to be born and finally welcomed two cute babies.

The second lady was 17 years of age and this was her first child. According to the records, her baby was too big for her to deliver on her own.   We got a trolley, pushed her to the surgical room and wore the surgeon’s gear to observe the operation. 

The C-section was successful and the cute baby was born.

During the time that babies have been born around us, one of the baby’s families who also has been a long time friend of Jabez Banan decided to give my name (Kenneth) to the child :).  The relatives were very appreciative of our help.  

Today we are switching to different units. Sefanit and I will possibly be at the immunization unit while the rest go to different places. 

We are having fun!!!! We are learning a lot! The SPRINT team is having a blast!

Thanks to those who prayed for Addison, he arrived safely.  He is on his way to Kapchorwa town to connect with the rest of the team. 

Please continue praying for the team.

I thank you in-Christ,

August 8

Here's an update from Kole Arap Wasawas, a SPU student who also serves on the leadership board of Development Companions International.  The team is engaged in learning and service- a great combination.


Dear Friends,

We have had a splendid time with the SPRINT so far.  We had an orientation with the team on Friday where we discussed the detailed outline of the activities we will be engaged in.  Jabez Banan who is Perfection Church and Ministry’s health coordinator along with the students developed an assessment tool for the health outreaches to be performed in the villages. 

Today 8th, each pair of students went to different PCM churches and later we had a welcome party at Kachorwa town were students interfaced with the PCM leadership.  We shared stories about how the churches were frequently persecuted in 1970-79 during which Idi Amin was president of Uganda.   Tomorrow on Monday 9th, students under Jabez's leadership will spend the entire day at Kapchorwa main hospital.  We will work alongside nurses, clinical officers, and other health providers.  Indeed we will meet up with the only doctor who serves in the Kapchorwa region.  Students will help in the treatment of the patients wherever they can, mostly pushing trolleys.  We will pray for patients and help distribute mosquito nets.

On the 11th-12th, we are sampling about nine homesteads in different villages to carry out a health survey and assessment of ideal homes.

The mission trip is taking shape.  We are beginning conversations that are good for future partnerships.

I thank you all for your prayers.



August 3

We made it!! We are now at Jonathan's house. Our last flight was a breeze, we had no problem getting our visas, and didn't have to go through customs! We are having a lovely time.

August 2

The team reports that they’ve safely reached Dubai, where they’ll stay overnight in the airport hotel before flying into Entebbe, Uganda. 

Sadly, team member Hope Stover was unable to make the flight with the team.  She won’t travel to Uganda this summer, but we’ll work on ways she can advocate and support Development Companions International (, even if from the United States.  If you’re on Hope’s e-mail list I’ll remove you from future email updates unless you’d like to stay connected.  Please e-mail me if you’d like to stay on the list.

In the meantime, here’s a snapshot of what’s ahead for the team when they reach Uganda, from Jonathan Beggs at DCI:

“We’ll be at the airport when they get here.  They’ll probably only do dinner, prayers, and luggage sorting on Wednesday since they’ll get to the house around five-ish.  Any that want to come to my church cell group will be welcome. 

On Thursday morning we’ll start orientation and lesson planning.  In the afternoon they will be escorted to the street market to buy some skirts and dresses they wanted.  Claudia will go with me to orchestra practice in the evening to see if she can play the bass in a big church fundraiser. 

Friday will be orientation and planning, Friday evening the concert. 

Saturday they’ll head up to the mountain and have a traditional dinner when they get to Kapchorwa. 

Sunday they’ll go to church in villages around Kapchorwa town and then have the big welcome party at my house with roasted meat. 

Monday they’ll begin at the hospital and I’ll pick Addison up from the airport.  We’ll drive him to Kapchorwa on the same day to catch up to the rest of the team as fast as possible.” 

As you can tell, the team will be in good hands.

August 1


This morning 7 SPU students began their travel to Kampala, Uganda, where they’ll spend the month of August serving alongside Development Companions International, helping in churches and community health and literacy programs. Addison Lin, the 8th member of this group, will join the team next week.  

SPRINT (Seattle Pacific Reachout International) is SPU’s short-term missions program.  This summer we’ll send nearly 70 students to 9 countries across the globe to learn from and serve alongside local community leaders.  These students have been meeting together since February, and have spent significant time in pre-trip training to consider the impact of short-term service, ways to approach unfamiliar cultures and the role of American Christians in the global context. 

Our hope for SPRINT is to provide opportunities for students to learn first-hand from leaders engaged in significant issues in their communities and to encourage others through their service. 

In the picture, Sefanit, Margaret, Holly, Laura and Claudia prepare to depart Seatac Airport. Hope and Sammy will join them in Dubai.

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