If you’ve been around these parts for even a quick minute, you already know that orphan care is a big part of my family’s life. Our Pearl was adopted from Africa about three and a half years ago, and through that lengthy process our vision and heart for the orphan was significantly refined. We learned that there are just.so.many in need of a loving family and that although adoption is not for everyone, more families are needed both here in the US and abroad to step up and make a way to care for the most vulnerable children on our planet. We are honored to be connected with multiple orphan care organizations that not only focus on awareness of ethical orphan care and serving families already involved in adoption/foster care, but also those who seek to match adoptable children with adoptive parents in the most ethical way possible. We also recognize that adoption is not the answer for every orphan, and also seek to work with those organizations that seek to meet the needs of children who will never be eligible for adoption. Our favorite, most passionate efforts are for those organizations who focus on orphan prevention...on finding a way to provide services or materials to families in crisis in order to keep them intact.
Mercy for Mamas is one such ministry. They exist to serve pregnant women in Uganda by providing them with sterile birthing kits. I have posted about them here before and have sent birthing kits on through their hands in the name of my daughter who was born on Ugandan soil. I believe in this organization and have read over and again how effective its reach has been in orphan prevention through helping Ugandan mothers deliver their babies safely.
It is with great joy that I can share that I have been approved as a team member to travel in June and help be the hands that serve expectant mothers in Uganda! An additional $2000 is still needed in order to make this happen.
To understand the impact of Mercy for Mamas, we first must know that culturally, if a woman is fortunate enough to be able to go to a birthing “facility,” she is required to bring her own supplies for delivery. If she gives birth in her village, she will have to use whatever she can find to deliver her child, cut the umbilical cord, and help her body heal. Many times their supplies include a rusty razor blade and dirty shoelace, which unsurprisingly results in the death of more than 20 women each day from birthing-related issues. 1 in every 35 will die from a pregnancy/birth complication, and these statistics are estimated to be very low because so many births and deaths do not go reported in Uganda.
It is very humbling to consider that in America, we frivolously debate how we are going to deliver our babies...what music, what relaxation methods, what if any pain relievers we will take. In Uganda, women face delivery with the full knowledge that they very well could be one of the many who die each and every day from easily preventable childbirth complications. Mercy for Mamas seeks to serve these women by providing them with sterile birthing kits, which contain everything a woman needs to birth safely in Uganda. Each mama kit contains plastic sheeting, razor blades, cotton wool (gauze pad), soap, gloves, cord ties, and a child health card. Each kit also includes an instruction sheet in both English and Luganda. All of the supplies are sealed so that they remain sterile until needed.
Our team will be traveling to multiple, (some very remote), locations in Uganda in order to serve expectant mothers in various communities. Our goals are to pour into these special women through provision of supplies, basic prenatal care, and by helping meet their spiritual needs through Bible study and prayer as well as caring for their children while they receive the education or healthcare that will help them birth safely.
The Captain and I have made some strides toward saving, trimming, rearranging in order to fund this trip, and I have been fortunate to have received a freelance writing opportunity as well as at least one speaking engagements to share what I know about apps that parents and students should approach with caution as well as technology and the teenage brain (Interested in this for your youth group or parents? Please contact me here!). Still, there is a gap in what we can muster and what is required.
My goal here is to find 40 people to give $50 (tax-deductible donation). This will help get my hands and feet to serving these sweet ladies in Uganda as well as provide for some of the supplies we will need to carry out the trip effectively and efficiently. There are several options for giving:
PayPal: Go to Mercy for Mamas and click “Donate,” then designate in the notes field for Michelle Wilson.
Check: Mail check to Mercy for Mamas (designated for Michelle Wilson) at 1604 Prairie Run Circle, Mulvane, KS 67110.
Check: Mail check directly to us and we will send on to Mercy for Mamas (just contact me if you need our address)
We have made two payments already and will need to raise the remainder of the trip expenses by May 12. I appreciate any and all assistance you can provide for this trip!
One of my roles on this team will be to help tell the stories of those we meet and see and are able to help through this unique trip to Uganda, meaning I will blog frequently while in country. Be sure to check back here and at Mercy for Mamas for updates!
See for yourself what Mercy for Mamas is doing on the ground in Uganda!
Check out the video below for a kid-friendly version of what Mercy for Mamas does!