If I were to draw just one lesson in retrospect from almost twenty years of Kids of Africa, it would be this: that love is the strongest force in life, always having the last word. In this spirit I send you warm Easter greetings. Especially in the name of our many protégés, over a thousand scholarship holders, employees, and the many people who are touched by your giving. They all say, “Thank you!”
Walking the talk
To be clear: also in Kids of Africa there are sometimes conflicts, quarrels, and yes: things have already disappeared. No sugar-coating. We all know: pious calendar sayings about love do not change the world. Sure. But: when we help people in existential need, when we give them courage, strength and hope both through comforting words and courageous deeds, then the power of love works. I have seen it many times in Kids of Africa.
In Uganda, there is often existential need – especially of children. Since the pandemic, vicious circles have increased dramatically. When reserves are depleted, when people are on the run, sick or helpless, vulnerable children are often left behind. For them – as I have often seen in twenty years – nothing lifts them more than enduring care and love. But words can never replace deeds. When hand, heart and mind are inspired by the same love, they are unbeatable. Good enough, that’s true everywhere. This is what we remember on this Easter Day. In Kids of Africa as much as around the world.
Everything we have done at Kids of Africa for almost twenty years should be measured by sustainability. Sustainability is not everything. But it is one of our highest goals. Whether we give our protégés a family or give outsiders a scholarship, it is always about helping people to help themselves.
We support vulnerable children who are among Uganda’s poorest of the poor, so that they will be able to stand on their own two feet. That is what everything at Kids of Africa is about. Quintessentially. We support youngsters to become responsible, active Ugandan citizens. So that they can develop their talents, benefit from them and share them with others. This is how good things can be created. Sustainably. But this is only possible if heart, hand and mind are guided by the same power of love.
The way of love
Once again: Easter love has nothing to do with pious calendar slogans. It expects nothing, it demands nothing, and it is precisely from this that it draws existential strength. I do not know a more beautiful formulation for it than that of the letter to the Corinthians (13.1-7):
“If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing …
… Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”
In this spirit, I wish you a wonderful Easter Sunday. Thank you for your interest, your support, your help. It means the world.
Warmest greetings from Kids of Africa