Where I am from in Kyotera, Rakai District, the first virus of HIV/AIDS was detected in Uganda in the 1980's here in my community. Then, so many people died and nobody knew what was killing them. There was a lot of superstition, and many thought they were bewitched. This HIV/AIDS left a lot of orphans and widows. This is what I grew up in...very harsh, very poor, surrounded by a lot of death. It was a very miserable situation. To this day, this community is still under the scourge of HIV/AIDS, whereby the prevalence is 15%.
I used to ask, "Why am I born into this kind of community?" My mom and my father came from such a poor economical background...we lived in a bad, bad house and we were one of the poorest there. So many were dying, and we were burying them day and night. In Uganda, we don't have cemeteries. We had to bury the dead in our own gardens and yards.
Despite the poverty and struggle, I did manage to go to elementary school and high school. My plan was to go to college then and become a doctor so that I could help find a cure for HIV/AIDS. That way I could help my community. But, God's plan wasn't like that. When I was in high school, I accepted the Lord as my Savior and ended up going to Bible college. So I ended up becoming a pastor - a different kind of doctor, a "spiritual doctor".
So then God started calling me back to my community to start a ministry in 1997. I married my wife in 2008 and then had our first child the next year. At the same time, my father died so then as the oldest son, it was my job to be the head of the whole family. I was not only the oldest, but the only son, so I had to take care of my sisters and nephews and everyone. Then in 2010, my older sister died of HIV/AIDS. At that time doctors were finally really starting to learn more about what this devastating disease really was.
My sister left nine children behind and was a single mom. The children's father was not a part of their lives. I asked him, "What plans do you have for your children? They need their father! They need food, school, shelter and education! I didn't have the money to take them. I was living in a house of two rooms, trying to take care of my family...planning, struggling to do so. I couldn't stand this big load of children on my shoulders. The children's dad said he didn't have a plan for them and told me if I didn't then he would give them away to anyone that wanted to help them. I didn't feel like I had a choice at that time, so we decided to take the children to their father. The night before we were going to take them, the Lord spoke to me and said, "Ronald, do not do this, do not take the children to their father. You be their father. Be their mother. Be their uncle. Be everything to them." It was a very sleepless night because I saw how big the burden was for me. I told my mother and family the Lord is requiring me to take all of the children. Everyone was telling me I could not - what are you talking about! You cannot manage this!"
After one year, we did it, we took care of all of my nieces and nephews. Then the Lord spoke and said, "If you can take care of your nieces, nephews and own children, then how many children in the community could you take care of that have nobody?" I was like "what, Lord, are you kidding me?"
However, I did listen, and after some time I started a school for the orphans and vulnerable children. I went house to house to house to get the children who needed help. We started with a small piece of land, two classrooms and one office. The first year we had 72 children, and now, 2016, five years later, we have 212 children. I don't want them to suffer. I know that God, through me, shall bring hope to them all. We must be the hope for the hopeless, and the voice for the voiceless. They are young and innocent and don't know what is going on out there.
Then, I lost a second sister to HIV. She left me six children to take care of. Now, in my home live 16 people. Our goal now is to expand the school onto five acres. Along with sponsors, supporters, we can all do it. Children deserve the right to food. Education. Medicine. Clothing. I believe, the Lord is going to use me, along with other people, to walk together as a team to make sure the orphans and vulnerable children get the chance they deserve.
Calidality Ministries International (CMI), is a Christian faith ministry that was born by God to empower God's forsaken people in the communities, schools, hospitals, prisons and in families for both believers and non believers of Jesus. CMI serves in their community to help desperate, hopeless, voiceless and frustrated people. CMI is more than a church, but a ministry to bless multitudes of people with different various ministries in different areas. It is not all about planting churches, but impacting communities with hope that will give each and every person a voice.
To find out more about CMI or to make a donation, visit: http://calidalityministries.webs.com/