Africans were recently challenged to take the lead in finding solutions to problems on the continent and not wait for people from the Western World.
Speaking at the Watoto Children’s Choir Concert “Signs and Wonder” recently John Maxwell, the Leadership and Business coach Eliane Jacobs commended the Watoto Childcare ministries for restoring hope for vulnerable children through an African village setting instead of typical orphanage structure.
Jacobs who was in the country together with several international leadership and business coaches noted that it is the responsibility of African leaders, individuals and the general population to take up the responsibility and emulate what Watoto Church is doing to rescue and raise future leaders.
Referring to her husband, Eliane Jacobs said that his story is exactly the same as the stories of the little Watoto children here but because someone believed in him, today he is one of the most amazing business people in South Africa. Jacobs went on to explain that all people need in life is the right environment.
“we need an environment that believes in us, we need an environment that calls our purpose out because God sent us here as unique beings, every single one of us has a different calling…..can you believe how much we can change the world if we come together, the African Story is a story of disunity, we are here as South Africans to join your mission to say we want to be the unity we see in the world”-Jacobs.
Watoto Church Team leader Pastor Julius Rwotlonyo observed that the Church is scaling up its involvement in the community by introducing the Watoto Neighborhood program to supplement the Children’s villages by supporting and empowering marginalized mothers right in their communities.
Rwotlonyo says that when they talked to the women, the first thing they said was about their children. They don’t think about themselves, they say they want their children to have great education because that is the area where the struggling.
He explains that this was an assurance that these wounded women still had a vision for their children.
Secondly the women do not want the Church to just come and look after their children, adding that they may not be that educated but they can do something and have a stable income, according to Rwotlonyo.
“It is not dignity to live on hand out, that is not what we (the Church) want, we want to give them a hand-up so that they can look after themselves, do something and also look after their children and if possible care for other,” Pastor Julius Rwotlonyo
Edwin Smith Kigozi is a beneficiary of the Watoto Childcare ministries and he says any one can make a difference.
He told The Sunrise Newspaper that right now Watoto has got over a thousand adults that have gone through its Childcare ministries just like himself and they are doing different things in fields like politics, law, medicine among others. Kigozi attributes the realization of his dream as a Music producer to the fact that through Watoto someone sponsored him.
“and to sponsor a child in Watoto all you need is 70,000 shillings every month, money you could use to have two meals and it is gone, it may be little to you who is giving but to one who is receiving, it is more than everything, that 70,000 shillings that you sacrifice will change someone’s life for better”-Kigozi adds.
The Sign and Wonders concert was part of the week long (1st to 7th July) TRAIN Campaign program where international coaches engaged individuals, staff from over 75 public, and private organizations on business and leadership skills.
Solutions Africa-the organizers of the TRAIN Campaign agreed with the participating Coaches to subsidize the training fees but also direct the proceeds from the leadership workshops held in different parts of the country to the raising of Watoto Children.
Pastor Julius Rwotlonyo explains that the concert was one of the ideas to engage the people of Kampala to enjoy the experience and what Watoto has been doing through Music.
He says the ministry has been doing this around the world, sharing the Watoto story, inviting partnership and there has been massive response.
“I think it is now time for Africa and Uganda to own our children and that is why we are excited about it(Kampala Concert) this is the first of many that will be coming including TRAIN Campaign”-Pastor Julius Rwotlonyo.