Team from Real Life Church Departs on Humanitarian Mission to Uganda

    Valencia, CA – June 1, 2009 – A short-term mission team from Real Life Church (RLC) in Valencia, California departed today for Uganda in northern Africa. Serving with the non-profit organization, Children of the Nations (COTN), the team of ten led by Brandon Beard, Life Groups Pastor at Real Life Church, will be participating in the construction of the organization’s Uganda Children's Village, a complex to include residential children’s homes, school facilities, a main hall and library and more. The community in Lira, Uganda where the children’s village is located was hard hit by the country’s long-running war with the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), leaving many children orphaned and tens of thousands of people internally displaced.

    As a Life Groups Pastor at Real Life Church, Brandon works to encourage and empower people to serve in their community. "Bringing people together in their neighborhood to build community, reach out to others, and serve together is the best part of my role at RLC," shared Brandon. “What an exciting thing to be able serve, reach out, and build a community—all the way in Uganda!”

    The mission trip is part of Children of the Nations’ Venture Program, which seeks to expose participants to the organization’s mission so that they may utilize their talents, resources, and relationships to accomplish the vision: raising children who transform nations. "Venture Teams have always been a huge blessing to COTN’s in-country missions and activities," said Edward Olara, COTN–Uganda Venture Coordinator. "The excitement and joy to receive Mr. Beard's team is inexpressible here, especially among the children and staff."

    Brandon's team will be the first US Venture Team to assist with construction of the new village. "This particular first team is going to be a big blessing to the ongoing construction work of the new village," says Mr. Olara. "Their participation will be hands-on: block laying, ferrying materials, clearing of the site, etc. We are ever grateful for Real Life Church for standing behind this project."

    About Children of the Nations
    Children of the Nations (COTN) is a non-profit organization dedicated to raising children who transform nations. Founded in 1995, the organization currently provides holistic care to orphaned and destitute children in Sierra Leone, Malawi, Uganda, and the Dominican Republic. By partnering with nationals, they establish full-care residential Children’s Homes (for orphans) and Village Partnership Programs (to benefit children living with destitute families or caregivers who are unable to properly provide for them). The programs and services they provide include education, feeding centers, medical services, and community development initiatives such as agriculture, sanitation projects, micro-enterprise, and much more. Children of the Nations believes that true, lasting, and meaningful change begins with the children, and so they are their mission. Children of the Nations stands apart from other organizations in their goal, not to provide relief, but rather to come alongside nationals, empowering them to a life of self-sustainability. For more information, visit www.cotni.org.

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    Contact:
    Sara Booth, Orange County Area Coordinator
    Children of the Nations – USA
    sarabooth@cotni.org