On 10th October 2017, 72 children visited their parents in 5 prisons namely: Luzira Upper, Murchison Bay, Nakasongola, Jinja and Kitalya. This time, they were accompanied by a team from Partners in Hope USA; Lawson Martin, Brooke Skypala, Erik and Alana Mitchell. As always, they were accompanied by Wells of Hope staff. Despite the heavy rains in the morning, the children were still enthusiastic; as some sang on their way to prison.
In all prisons, children were warmly welcomed by the prisons personnel, went through security checks and were ushered into the waiting rooms where they met their parents.
Below were some of the highlights:
Luzira Upper Prison;
Unlike the other visits, this time the inmates in both Codemn and Boma were merged in the same room and so it was one big happy family.
Upon arrival, the children quickly identified their parents and with big and warm hugs, they expressed their joy of seeing them.
Parents were seen engaging their children in prayer before they shared a meal; it is such a great joy to see the parents eagerly serving their children because they do it with so much joy and love.
Interactions made with the parents of the children were wonderful and all of them are very grateful to the fact that Wells of Hope has intervened; and that it is helping with making the future of their children bright; fathers were thankful to Wells of Hope that their children are going to school and know how to speak English and write.
The visit was climaxed with a song and dance from the children; they learnt them during the camp held last month and the title of the song was “I am not forgotten.” Parents happily cheered on their children as they repeated some lines in the song.
Rebecca Namatovu met her father for the very first time; her sisters Sarah Nalubega and Rose Nasamba who had spent two years without visiting their father were so excited to meet him, they shared with him about the stories at home and how everyone was doing ,he encouraged them to work hard in class and be disciplined children . He prayed for his children and promised that he would be back to them soon.
Simon, a dad to Irene Kiyai, Doreen Nakiria and Peter Ojangole was so excited to see his children for the first time this year; this is because at the beginning of the year he was transferred to Mbale prison where he was going for his appeal. He was filled with joy to inform his children that his sentence was lessened from 40 years to 7 years and he still had an opportunity to have his sentence reduced further. The children were so excited and thankful that their father’s sentence had been lessened; Irene was seen shading tears of joy. He continued to encourage them to work hard in school and be disciplined children because discipline is the key to success.
In the Main prison, Latif Walekwe, Yasuri Walekwe and Enock Segawa, were happy to see their fathers and the inmates equally happy to see their sons growing so tall and taller than their fathers. The inmates were all praises for Wells of Hope, Enock’s father thanked Wells of Hope for his son who is going to sit his senior four exams, because if it was not Wells of Hope, Enock would have given up on studying.
At the women prison, the women were excited to see their children, Ellen Eva, Alana and Erik Mitchell. They appreciated Wells of Hope for not only bringing their children to see them but also visitors who are also supporters of the ministry from the US; this was very important for them. Later, the mothers shared a lovely meal with their children and the visitors.
It was an exquisite moment seeing the inmates praying for their children who are candidates: Stanley father to Enock Segawa in senior 4, Bonny (mother) with 2 candidates; Catherine in Primary seven and Hellen Agumuniitwe in Senior 4.
At Kitalya, this golden opportunity had the children excited. David and Annet could not hide the anxiety of seeing their father for the first time. Betty Nabulondera too could not wait to see her father another time and to tell him too how she too felt.
Yuda, father to David and Annet was very happy to see his children and with a radiant smile on his face, he expressed his joy of seeing his children. He said with a rather sullen face that it had really been a long time without seeing Annet and had never seen David since he was imprisoned. The parents shared merry moments with their children.
The children and the parents expressed tremendous joy upon seeing one another; “Wow! I can’t believe that you’re this big now!” Angela Nawangi’s dad exclaimed in excitement after seeing his 7 year old daughter. The parents and their children were engaged in deep conversations; with wide smiles and loud laughter, one could tell that they enjoyed one another’s company.
The parents later reviewed their children’s academic progress with Ben: they expressed gratitude to Wells of Hope for all the support rendered to their children; and encouraged their children to trust God and put in more effort in their studies so that they don’t end up like them.
We thank Partners in Hope USA for facilitating the visit.