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Turning Tires into Treasures

luket tired

“Sustainable income for hardworking Ugandans through recycling old tires into new treasures”

Ever heard the saying ‘one man’s trash is another man’s treasure’? Once again God is using that to teach us if we are willing we can use anything to glorify Him…even tires. Luket Tired, a division of Luket Ministries founded by Adam and Natasha Perryman is doing just that. They are based out of Jinja, Uganda and have a passion for ending the cycle of poverty by providing business mentorship to empower women (among other things). They have graciously agreed to partner with us and have taught our widows to make the beautiful earrings pictured above.
widows making tire earrings
Our widows had the opportunity to earn some income and learn a new skill in the process.

And He who sits on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” And He said, “write for these words are faithful and true.” (Revelation 21:5 – NASB)
Coming Soon on Etsy!

Post Author: Kelsey

Frequently Asked Questions about HIV/AIDS

So you all know we are ROWAN and what that stands for (Rural Orphans & Widows AIDS Network). But I’ve discovered here and abroad that there is so much stigma surrounding the terms “HIV positive” or “AIDS”. There are so many questions that go unanswered and people often just accept what they hear as truth. I wanted to take some time and address just a few of those questions you might be asking. I know my family and friends had concerns when I headed halfway across the world on a volunteer trip to Uganda. So here is a quick crash course on HIV/AIDS and some commonly asked questions.

What is AIDS? What causes AIDS?

AIDS stands for Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome.
An HIV-positive person receives an AIDS diagnosis after developing one of the CDC-defined AIDS indicator illnesses.
Over time, infection with HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) can weaken the immune system to the point that the system has difficulty fighting off certain infections. These types of infections are known as opportunistic infections. Many of the infections that cause problems or that can be life-threatening for people with AIDS are usually controlled by a healthy immune system. The immune system of a person with AIDS has weakened to the point that medical intervention may be necessary to prevent or treat serious illness.

What is the Difference Between HIV and AIDS?

HIV is the virus that causes AIDS.
H Human: because this virus can only infect human beings.
I Immuno-deficiency: because the effect of the virus is to create a deficiency, a failure to work properly, within the body’s immune system.
V Virus: because this organism is a virus, which means one of its characteristics is that it is incapable of reproducing by itself. It reproduces by taking over the machinery of the human cell.
A Acquired: because it’s a condition one must acquire or get infected with; not something transmitted through the genes
I Immune: because it affects the body’s immune system, the part of the body which usually works to fight off germs such as bacteria and viruses
D Deficiency: because it makes the immune system deficient (makes it not work properly)
S Syndrome: because someone with AIDS may experience a wide range of different diseases and opportunistic infections.

Can I get HIV from casual contact?

No. HIV is not transmitted by day to day contact in the home, the workplace, schools, or social settings. HIV is not transmitted through shaking hands, hugging or a casual kiss. You cannot become infected from a toilet seat, a drinking fountain, a doorknob, dishes, drinking glasses, food, or pets.

How long does it take for HIV to cause AIDS?

Currently, the average time between HIV infection and the appearance of signs that could lead to an AIDS diagnosis is 8-11 years. This time varies greatly from person to person and can depend on many factors including a person’s health status and behaviors. Today there are medical treatments that can slow down the rate at which HIV weakens the immune system. There are other treatments that can prevent or cure some of the illnesses associated with AIDS. As with other diseases, early detection offers more options for treatment and preventative health care.

Is there a cure or any kind of treatment for HIV/AIDS?

The CDC National AIDS Hotline can offer practical information on maintaining health and general information about a wide variety of treatments, including antiretrovirals and prophylaxis for opportunistic infections

Information taken from:

Post Author: Kelsey

ROWAN voted top-rated Nonprofit in 2015

We are so excited to share that we have achieved this status — but we couldn’t have done it without you! Thank you for your kind reviews and for believing in what ROWAN stands for and supporting our mission.

Rural Orphans & Widows Aids Network Inc

Rating: 4.97 stars 37 reviews 1,766 views
Nonprofit Issues:
Human Services, International
98 Wadsworth Blvd #127-227 Lakewood CO 80226 USA
To love & empower orphans & widows infected or affected by HIV & AIDS in Uganda through education, medical care and treatment, spiritual nourishment and business training, resulting in self-reliance. ROWAN partners with local Christian leaders & development organizations empowering each person to discover their God-given gifts & passions. Together, we assess quality of life, identify physical, spiritual & social needs & implement innovative strategies to meet these needs within the community.
Over 150 community members that are HIV+ have easy access to their medications, 116 children in school from primary all the way to higher education, 4 students graduated with a degree, 7 savings and loans group among the community, empowered community to plant and sustain passion fruit for income, taught over 200 community members in a local literacy program, successfully networked with 17 other Ugandan organizations for collaboration under #UgandaUnite.
Target demographics:
widows and orphans affected/infected by HIV/AIDS
Direct beneficiaries per year:
350 community members
Geographic areas served:
30 rural villages in East Uganda
medical care, education, business training, spiritual nourishment and urgent needs.

Read More!

Post Author: Kelsey

The Syrian Refugee Crisis

syrian refugee graphic

“Just because it isn’t happening here doesn’t mean it isn’t happening.”

There is a video circulating social media that has gone viral. It depicts a young Syrian girl throughout the course of a year. At first she is happy and carefree, surrounded by love and security. Then her circumstances begin to change and her response turns into fear, mistrust and eventually apathy. Seeing this visualized wrecked me. I wanted to do something, anything…but what exactly?
How many times do we ignore crises occurring on the other side of the world because it doesn’t affect us? Africa is no stranger to this refugee problem. The following is an excerpt from a former Rwandan refugee’s letter to his fellow countrymen.

Dear Rwandans, Burundians, Sierra Leonean, Liberians, Ivorians, Ethiopians and all other experts or professional refugees, please remember where you were in 1990s and 2000s. Share your tactics to cross borders, those stories you told yourself and others are needed, the names you named yourselves, the fake passports you legalized temporally and (tore) apart in toilets before landing in Europe, US and Canada. Your smart ideas to survive the terrible weather, capitalism, loneliness of your new ‘home’, and all those languages you learned in 24 hours are needed. Volunteer information online anonymous(ly). Blog your experiences, (as I) am sure some Syrians, Iraq, Afghan, Somali, Libyans, Sudanese, Yemeni who are dying at sea and trying to survive need your expert opinion. While you are at it, thank God you made it whatever is your current status.

We can’t do everything, but we all must do something. Perhaps you don’t have the knowledge to share from your own personal experience, but what can you do? The image of the drowned toddler boy on the beach woke the world to this tragedy happening across the ocean, but he wasn’t the first to lose his life in the pursuit of freedom from the ravages of war. So many of these refugees and others are under the age of 18 years old. These children are the future and deserve a chance to succeed.
What Can I Do?

Post Author: Kelsey

#Uganda Unite: Together We Can Accomplish More

About two weeks ago at this time, I was in the midst of our very first summit for #Uganda Unite.

Over seventeen different organizations were represented, ideas were shared, dreams were voiced, relationships were formed and we saw what we could do together to effect change in Uganda.

It was refreshing to be surrounded by so many individuals who shared the same passion — striving to make a difference in a place that is special to us all. We bonded over our common goals, talked about future projects and enlisted the help of each another.
As one attendee so aptly put it, sometimes the most important thing is showing up and saying yes. And so many did just that. They were faced with a need and they decided to act. Everyone came from different backgrounds, had varying levels of education, unique perspectives and limited resources. But they didn’t let that stop them from doing something. As a result, so many lives have been impacted.

More than 5,000 kids in school, hundreds cared for in orphanages, businesses that support the local economy, and hospitals to heal the sick are some of the tangible outcomes from these ventures.

So here is our question: if less than two dozen organizations in Colorado alone can make that kind of impact, what would happen if this continued to spread? And we are excited to see that answered in the months to come. Ordinary people in ordinary circumstances can do great things when they join forces and come together.

Post Author: Kelsey

Hope Doesn't Disappoint

gma with shukran

At ROWAN we believe that hope doesn’t disappoint.

In the villages we have seen our share of sorrow and pain. These people have families and face struggles and endure hardships. Recently we experienced the loss of one of our sweet mamas during childbirth.

Shukran, the premature infant that was born at only 4 pounds seemed to have no hope.

She needed specific nutrition, in addition to love and nurture. Grandma cared for her in the best way she knew how, but she needed more.
And we reached out — to YOU, dear readers. Our co-founder sent out a plea via social media and the cry did not go unheard. Several mamas stepped up to provide money for formula.

We have been able to empower grandma to care for this sweet child by meeting her physical needs.

Instead of giving her well water, grandma was able to feed little Shukran the formula she so desperately needed.

Now Shukran is doing great, and has the chance to grow up into a beautiful child.

All because individuals were open to serving and blessing this small one with a tangible gift. And once again, we see that Hope never disappoints.
Donate to Urgent Needs!

Post Author: Kelsey

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