So, 9.15am last Tuesday, I was headed down to our District Headquarters for the opening of a new building for the Education Department. By 12pm I was back onsite, with a 3-week-old baby in tow! Yep, I’m totally familiar and experienced with newborns!! (Not!) Jaz came along at around 2 years of age, and that was where my first-hand ‘raise a child’ experience started. (Nephews, nieces and others don’t count, as there was always ‘a more appropriate or experienced adult’ hovering in the background!)
The day unfolded something like this ….. after visiting the Education office, (and ascertaining there was actually only two people already present for the meeting, and hence I could come back home and do a few hours work first!), I was making my way out only to be accosted by the policewoman on gate duty, and whisked away to visit a three-week-old baby who was perceived to be in danger. Then followed a meeting with the village chairman to make sure he was aware of the situation, a meeting at police headquarters, and a meeting with the government probation office. The outcome being that Amari has temporary custody of Baby James while authorities work on locating other relatives and resolving the home situation.
So there I was, 11.30am in the morning, with a three-week-old in my arms, baby formula an 8 hour round trip away, and not a clue about what I was supposed to do with him once he started crying! But my staff immediately took over, found a few baby clothes I’d forgotten we still had around, fed him on powdered milk, rugged him up and put him to sleep. Fortunately it was the monthly auction day, so we could buy a bottle and a few blankets and sheets at the market, and got the formula put on a taxi in Hoima and delivered up here.
Onsite here, Baby James is primarily looked after by Oliver (my househelp), who showers him with love and attention. Other staff chip in, I take him for a few shifts (even braved a couple of nights!), and Jaz, Gerry and other children love holding him and feeding him.
The mother of Baby James has been to visit him a couple of times. Please pray for her as she is grieving not having him around, and pray that the best solution for all concerned will be found.
If you would like to specifically help support Baby James and his mother could you please contact us or donate here. We will be continuing to help with him, whether he remains here onsite, or whether he is resettled with his mother. We would also like to ‘stock up’ on a few items in case we get further cases of children needing emergency care.
And me, well – two weeks ago a very swift and fleeting ‘I’m a bit bored’ flitted across my mind. (And quickly disappeared, given the 3-desks-worth of admin I’m still trying to plow my way through!) But obviously God thought otherwise! (And adding to the irony, we are trying to promote the girl-child, and all I seem to do is collect little boys!)