The learning begins

Officially one week in!

It’s hard to believe that it has only been one week. It has been a long week but it has been good. The week began with orientation for the semester and the beginning of classes.

I am already getting settled into my home for the next few months at Uganda Christian University in Mukono. The campus is gorgeous and our group has been graciously and warmly welcomed (by the students, staff, and the weather). I will be taking two classes at the university to accompany the rest of my time at my senior social work practicum (which I am so excited about!).

I will be interning at an organization called the Refugee Law Project (RLP) based in Uganda’s capital city of Kampala. RLP is an organization that began in 1999 in a response to the high number of refugees that Uganda has welcomed into its borders. RLP provides legal, mental, and psychosocial assistance with the purpose to “empower asylum seekers, refugees, deportees, IDPs, and host communities to enjoy their human rights and lead dignified lives”. (Learn more about their great work at refugeelawproject.org )!! Here I will be working mainly in the Mental Health and Psychosocial Wellbeing department of the organization assisting in various activities. I’ve only had one day at my internship so far, but I look forward to all that I will learn there and for the professional growth that will accompany the experience.

 

I am already learning some great lessons within my first week here in Uganda. I’ve learned how to properly hand wash my clothes, where to find some great places to eat in town, and I have been challenged to think about my purpose and learning experience for the semester. I have been challenged to push into the tension and discomfort and know that I will grow from it. And I pray that through everything, it may be “all for the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10: 31).

Just one of the many beautiful sunsets!
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Heading Out

I’m going! I can’t believe that the time is finally here and I am heading to Uganda for a semester abroad.

Back to Uganda. It was three and a half years ago that I left Ugandan soil after a life-changing and eye-opening mission trip experience. I fell in love with the land and the people and since that time have longed to return to Uganda. And it is finally happening!

There is some comfort to return to a country that I have been to before when facing all of the other uncertainties of a study abroad experience. Yet even with that comfort, everything is different than before. I will be in a new location and here for a redefined purpose. I am entering this experience as a social work student. I will be learning from the people of the land and learning through action. Still, I believe that God has allowed me to embark on this journey to love others and to learn more about him.

As I enter into this new season and this new experience, I pray for a continual renewing of humility, grace, and love. I pray that I will be able to remember why I am embarking on this journey – I am going to learn and I am going to love. I pray that I will be able to grow professionally as a social worker, grow socially, and grow spiritually.

There are so many unknowns ahead. But I have peace and hope. For my God is the same yesterday, today, and forever, and he is with me always. I joyfully look forward to this experience and would be honored if you join this journey with me!