ARLENE IN RWANDA - Newsletter, January 2008

Mama Arlene on the new land.Greetings my partners in Ministry. I am writing to you, not from the Urukundo Home for Children in Rwanda, but from the United States. After a rough trip for Divine we are here. Divine suffered from motion sickness making the trip unpleasant for her. We have medicine now for the flight home that will make Divine more comfortable. Yes, Divine and I are in your “ice box” of the Northeast. It is cold. Divine experienced her first snow and loved it. I shivered and enjoyed joining her in throwing snowballs. She will have many unique experiences to share with her brothers and sisters back home.

Visiting family has been a blessing and sharing with my church families is special. This first week has been spent in the Williamsport (Central Pennsylvania) area. Soon
we will travel to McConnellstown, State College, Bloomsburg, Wrightsville, Hanover, Harrisburg, Bethlehem, Linglestown, New Bloomfield , Jersey Shore, Arlington,VA. and Spokane, WA . to tell the story of Urukundo. Please pray for our safe travels on the snowy roads. You can reach on my cell phone while I am in at the States: 570-447-0751.


In September 2007 a group of social workers from People to People, an organization founded by Dwight Eisenhower to bring people from different cultures together, visited Urukundo Home for Children. Mary Eisenhower, the founder’s granddaughter and the CEO of People to People, accompanied this group and visited our children. After evaluating the ministry Mary graciously accepted a position on Urukundo's International Board of Directors. We are honored to have Mary on the governing board.

I have been driving since I was twenty. I learned on a mechanica (an African term) car and then switched to an automatic. I drive throughout Rwanda with no problem. But when I got behind the wheel of the automobile loaned to me by friends of Urukundo, Art and Patti Depolas my mind went blank. Everything was in the wrong place. It took some time to revert back to driving from the left side of the car. We do drive on the same side of the road in Rwanda, but the mechanics for driving are on the right side of the car. I appreciate that my friends are letting me use their car –especially after such a scary start.

School has started. Our kids have new uniforms, shoes, backpacks and jackets, notebooks and pens- -plus school fees-- thanks to your generous sponsorship. (Photo)

img_1196.jpgimg_1702.JPGOUR OUTREACH
Here is a group of the 230 village children going to school because you have made it possible. (Photo)\

Our basketball court is a true blessing. A local karate teacher, who had been praying a long time for a place to teach, excitedly inquired about the use of our new basketball court. He made an offer we could not refuse; if he could use our court twice a week for private students in payment he would teach our kids, along with some neighborhood children. We are again blessed.

Belise doing her best. (Photo)img_1813.jpgimg_1653_2.jpg

As you know, all of our “homes” are currently rented in the village. One of our landlords has decided to raise the rent on our boys house. We could give him more money for a house that is too small and in need of major repairs, or we could stand on faith and trust in God and build our first cottage in the next three months – the end of our rental contract. We own the land and for $25,000 USD we can build and furnish a home for ten boys and a house mother. Construction began on the eve of my trip to the States and I continue to pray for five more homes so that all our present children can live on the land. Our prayer is for a total of ten cottages; five for girls and five for boys.

Three steps to building the new boy’s cottage (photo)


We were expecting one-hundred baby chicks before my trip to the States, but because of the problems in Kenya our babies have not arrived. They will come by air freight and Kenya Air is not moving freight. I just pray someone is caring for those chicks if they are sitting in a terminal waiting to come to us. We will then have five-hundred chickens by year’s end. The chicken farm is part of our plan to make Urukundo self-supporting in the future. It will take time, but by the grace of God it will happen. Eggs are very expensive in Africa and I have faith that our hens will produce good eggs and we will show a profit in less than a year. However, if they do not produce eggs --chicken soup is also nourishing.
Here is a delightful photos to tell you the story of our eleven-year-olds' visit here in the States.4.jpg
The 5th-Form class at Salladasburg Primary School, PA. Mr.Wall is the teacher.
We were welcomed and Divine had her first experience of your schools.

Visit this web site for updates and information about Urukundo.

Gifts for the children and support for the mission can be sent to:
Spiritworks/Arlene Brown
823 West Cremona Street
Seattle WA 98119
United States
Rwanda Fund
Saint Johns/Newberry UMC
2101 Newberry Street
Williamsport, Pa 17701

Beauty is what they have.
Opportunity is what they need.
Your love. Their lives, Our world.

Arlene D Brown
BP 179
Founder Urukundo Home for Children
Muhanga District, Rwanda
Office Cell 08769422
My Cell 05102964