Thursday, April14, 2011

By:  Rachel Eggum Cinador/L. Butler

Today was an extra special day as we had the chance to join our African friends in celebrating multiple blessings from our Creator God.  Robert Cinador (my husband and Tom’s brother-in-law) has been instrumental in bringing victory gardens to the people here in Uganda, as well as to the Congo.  Victory gardens were first conceived during World War II when there was a shortage of workers to plant and harvest fruits and vegetables.    People were thus encouraged to plant their own gardens and harvest the produce.  The end result was not only a great moral victory, but the amount of grown produce equalled the amount of all commercial produce – it made a BIG difference.  And the same can be said for the victory gardens here in Africa.  It is a wonderful way for villagers to help themselves and their community by growing food to  help meet the needs of their family and friends. 

Robert has also started a co-op with some young men who are creating demonstration gardens, experimenting with herbs and vegetables from the United States.  Demonstration gardens use education and research to enlighten the participants and their communities with knowledge that will improve horitcultural practices.  These enthusiastic young men are sharing their ideas, seeds and information with women who can then grow these vegetables to provide food for their families.  It is a fun and encouraging process to see what new types of food will thrive in the climate and soil of Uganda.

One of the demonstration gardens is called the Yum Yum Gardens – a title that needs no explanation.  : )  This project is expanding by including women who can sell the vegetables in the marketplace and to restaurants and thereby provide financial resources for the purchase of other daily necessities.  Those involved in the Yum Yum Gardens invited our Hope 4 Kids team to a celebration in the gardens.  We were rejoicing not only for the dignity and hope the gardens bring to our Ugandan brothers and sisters, but also for God’s mighty provision of healing Robert of cancer.  It was a great day as we were entertained with songs and dancing, followed by a HUGE meal they served us which included wonderful, delicious vegetables from their gardens.  We were blessed and honored to share this bountiful provision together.

We were also treated to one of the best and cutest vocal ensembles you will ever have the joy of hearing when the “dress a girl” singers arrived arrayed in their finest pillowcase dresses and sang the dress-a-girl song for us.  You can see what we mean by watching the performance on our Dress A Girl website:  http://wwwdressagirlaroundtheworld.com  – it is on the home page.

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