Show Mercy Int'l Project Trip - Uganda

Out front of the Show Mercy site

Friday January 31st
When Show Mercy Int’l started in Uganda back in 2004, their core mission was started to help the orphaned and abandoned children problem in Uganda (a problem experienced by nearly all of the AIDS ravaged countries of Sub-Saharan Africa). Seeing and meeting so many children without a mom or dad, or a home, tugged at their hearts to the point of compelling them to act.

As their vision took full shape after years of working and partnering with a local children’s home ministry, they finally constructed a site of their own in 2011 based on the EMI master plan. As I mentioned before, their 3-pronged ministry approach was to operate children’s homes, mission guesthouses for short-term mission teams, and a medical clinic. Phase 1 of the construction was the mission and long-term guesthouses, and the medical clinic.
The public entrance to the medical clinic. The well-manicured
and pristine setting at the clinic is such an important piece in
creating hope in the local people needing medical attention. 
Since being on the ground for the past few years, Show Mercy has had a chance to engage more in the children’s lives and understand more about their needs. What they’ve discovered is that they feel the primary influence on the children’s lives occurs at school. Since the children leave for school early in the morning and don’t return until the early evening, the educators are actually engaging the children more than their caretakers at the home.

Of course this could be said even in Western cultures, but the longer school days combined with the more communal living style of the homes makes the situation here even more weighted towards the schools. Thus, Show Mercy made the strategic decision to change focus away from building children’s homes on their site to providing a school where they can help shape the hearts and minds of the children, and ‘fill them with the truth of who they are in Christ’ (according to Mike Salley, the ministry director).
Team prayer time each morning, and devotion time each
evening (as depicted here). Such an important part of
EMI trips.
At present, Show Mercy is supporting about 100 children through a partnership with a local children’s home. It’s hoped that some of these kids will attend the school, but that will be the decision of the children’s home. The new school will have boarding for 200 of the 300 planned students, so it’s possible that some of these children could end up being boarded on the site as well. Either way, there are a number of nearby kids in the community who will attend the school as well, along with a portion of students who will pay to attend (thereby subsidizing the orphaned and community children who couldn’t possibly afford to attend the school).
The village church

Hanging out with the village kids at the weekly lunch group
event Show Mercy sponsors.
Ronald, one of the boys who Show Mercy helps. Ronald
was leaving for his boarding school the next day to begin
secondary school this year.

The kids come to the church for 2 hours once a week to hear
a message, sing some songs, do an activity, and then eat a
huge meal that Show Mercy funds but is served by the local
church workers.
Playing football with the similarly inclined boys in the village.

Overall, it really is motivating to be working with a ministry who has been so successful in getting up and running so quickly, building the previous EMI design, but also is not afraid to course-correct in order to best carry out what they feel God has called them to do. I think their rationale is sound, and seeing the impact they’re already having on some of their staff makes me even more excited to think about the lives that will be impacted by the school we’re designing.
Working with the undertakers at the cemetery civil engineers
on site getting the hole just the right size and depth.

Refereeing a discussion between the civil engineers and

Intern Zach hard at work


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