11 children visited in Women Prison Luzira, 53 children visited in Luzira Upper Prison, 3 children in Kitalya Prison, 7 children in Jinja Prison and 8 children in Nakasongola prison.
Below were the highlights of what transpired in the different prisons;
Women Prison Luzira: The mothers had prepared a lovely meal for their children and they tried to provide scholastic materials along with some basic needs for them like plates. The most life awakening moments at a time the inmates met their children after a long time. As the children waited for their mothers in the waiting room, Frank 8 years one of the children who was visiting his mother for the first time said that his father had tried to explain to him how his mother looked like, but he wasn’t sure of what he looked like. When his mother came, tears of joy rolled down her cheeks; she couldn’t believe that she had finally met her son. Florence 15 years and Rachel 14 years were also in great amusement that they visited their mother after 7 years; they had a great moment to get together again. Their mother was amazed at how fast they had grown. Maria 9 years and William 14 years visited their mother for the first time as well; on seeing Maria and William, the beatific look in her eyes would not hide the joy she felt even though it was going to be short lived, the brooding face also made it clear that seeing her children alive, was another miracle. She said that Maria and William were going to be murdered at the time she committed the crime. Patrick (7 years) and Edith (7 years)’s mother was overwhelmed to see her children too; she kept on saying that her children were going to die because the community wanted to take revenge on her. She cried when her children sang and danced for her.
Nusula 5 years and Juma 10 years also met their father for the first time; they were quiet at first but with time they caught up and started chatting with their father, he was extremely happy to see his children and encouraged them to study hard. John, Mary Agono (17 years)’s father said, “ I am glad that my daughter is different from the other girls of her age I left in the village; she would be with 3 children by now, but because of Wells of Hope she is still in school. She challenges me, the fact that she speaks English so well.” Faith 10 years and Tendo 7 years also visited their father for the first time, the girls were very happy as they ran to meet and hug him. Ismail their father said “I am very happy to see my daughters; they are all grown up and beautiful, thank you Wells of Hope for taking care of them.”
Juliet 13 years and Jenifer 10 years, visited their father for the first time; he said, “I cant remember Juliet because when I was imprisoned she was light skinned and now she is dark skinned, I have to closely look at them because it has been a very long time.”
Later, parents assessed their children’s reports and encouraged them to read hard, they also had some food stuffs prepared for the children to take back with as they went back to school; it was a great thing to see parents provide for their children school necessities like basins, sandals, books, pens and pencils.
In Condemn section; the parents were very happy to see their children and expressed their gratitude towards Wells of Hope for taking care of their children.
The teacher who had accompanied the children assessed the children’s academic progress with the parents and they were very glad on seeing how greatly the children had progressed; they encouraged their children to read very hard and make sure that they balance their studies and other activities.
The highlight of the day was when all parents gathered and the children in lower primary made music presentations for them; it was very amazing because the solicitors were children who were rather quiet but were confident and they sang with very good English.
Jinja prison; The Prison Wardens were welcoming and they helped in calling the inmates (parents) who were undoubtedly expecting the children. After a few minutes, the inmates came in; they expressed their joy on seeing their children. Later, the fathers served a lovely meal which they had prepared for their little princes and princesses.
Ben the teacher who accompanied the children briefed the fathers about their children’s academic performance and shared their reports to which the parents cheered their children; and where poor performance was observed, the parents encouraged their children to perform even better.
The inmates said that they were so grateful to Wells of Hope for the great work; “we are seeing our children after 10 months and they have grown and look so healthy!” they exclaimed.
The children happily and with bouncy faces shared their well colored letters which were also a special moment, some asked their little ones to read their letters to them, which was so touching!
The Highlight of the day was when Angel Nawangi 7 years read her letter to her dad while she sat on his lap. The smiles that cut across her face made him sob a little, Angel’s dad later shared that he was arrested when Angel was only seven months and then to see her looking so beautiful and reading her own hand written letter to him was very astounding! He said that he had no exact words of how to thank Wells of Hope! He is hopeful that he will be released soon.
The children expressed joy and excitement all the way to Nakasongola prison.
In the women section, the mothers welcomed their children with shouts of joy; with ecstatic gaze on their faces, they hugged their children and were astonished by their growth. They were later engaged in deep and very interactive conversations with their children. During the visit, they shared a lovely meal which the mothers had prepared.
The highlight of the day was a mother who encouraged all the children to always have a Godly character and be well-disciplined because these are a key to their success. “Thank you Wells of Hope for being parents to our children; before joining Wells of Hope, we were not sure how they would turn out but now, we are at peace.” another mother remarked. Annet Kampi, Wells of Hope staff member reviewed the children’s academic progress with the mothers. They encouraged their children to fully rely on God for wisdom so that He would guide them through their studies. The mothers expressed gratitude towards Wells of Hope for the initiative the organization took on to look after their children. The mothers joined by their friends shared a prayer with their children and then bade them farewell.
KITALYA PRISON: The children accompanied by Wells of Hope volunteers reached the prison safely and were warmly received by the prison officers. The inmates and the children shared snacks and encouraged the children to read hard. The Welfare Officer thanked Wells of Hope Ministries for all efforts made to have the visit but also most importantly for taking care of children the ministry has no attachment to.
We thank Mavuno Cloud 9 Cell from Mavuno Church for donating the funds for the prison visit; we thank them for their continued support for children with parents in prison.