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A Champion for Change

“Champions for Change” is the name of the feature, and I can’t begin to tell you how excited I was when I saw one of the champions being showcased – a young man named Lual Mayen. He was born as his family was fleeing South Sudan, and has lived more than 22 years in a refugee camp in northern Uganda. The first time he ever saw a computer was in 2007 during a refugee registration, and after he told his mother he wanted to buy [...]

A plea for help

My blog this week is a plea for help, one that will benefit people in desperate circumstances in one of the poorest countries in the world. Yet it has to do with the medical crisis that is affecting us all – here in the United States and around the world, including the Nakivale Refugee Settlement in Southwest Uganda. Those who have been regular readers of my column and blog know about my work in Uganda with Pathways to Hope Africa, including several trips to the [...]

No black or white answers

“We’re black, aren’t we?” That’s the question my friend’s five-year-old granddaughter asked her this morning. Her heart broke when she heard the question, and mine broke when she told me about it. It broke even more when she told me her granddaughter’s next question, in which she asked about a close family friend. “She’s white, isn’t she?” It’s not as though her granddaughter didn’t recognize the difference in skin color before, it’s just that it didn’t matter. But now it did, enough to bring questions [...]

By |May 29th, 2020|Columns, Family, Making a Difference, Values|0 Comments

Imagine a World…

My weekly project last week was tackling one of the shelves in my office closet – the one that holds, among other things, notebooks, binders, and workbooks from some of the many classes I’ve taken over the years. Most of them have to do with writing or professional speaking, and I haven’t really looked at them in a long time. In a way, going through them was like looking at old scrapbooks or photo albums. In another way, it was a bit like looking in [...]

Tribute to a King

I took part in an Open Mic Poetry Reading last night that was co-sponsored by the Georgia Writers Museum and our local library. The event was to include a tribute to Martin Luther King Jr. and others who have been influences in our lives. I took the occasion as a challenge to write a poem inspired by Martin Luther King, and by the time I was done I realized that his message – and especially his “I have a dream” speech – may be even [...]

By |January 17th, 2020|Columns, Holidays, Making a Difference, Values|0 Comments

Enjoying a Cross Walk

Most of our time in Uganda had to do with poultry farming. But the most heartwarming and rewarding time for me came on the day I spent several hours walking through the village of Ssenyomo, carrying a tote bag filled with wooden crosses that I distributed to members of this largely Catholic community. The crosses were carved and donated by a retired gentleman from my church who is well-known for his woodworking skills as well as his generosity. We’re members of the same church group, [...]

By |November 17th, 2019|Columns, Faith, Making a Difference, Uganda, Values|0 Comments

Poultry Power

When I say the word “chicken,” what’s the first thing that comes to your mind? Maybe you envision an actual rooster or hen. Or perhaps it’s a plate of chicken nuggets or Kentucky Fried. You might think of a childhood bully’s taunt, daring you to try something stupid or dangerous, and then calling you a chicken when you don’t oblige. Right now, the word “chicken” takes me back to Uganda, where I spent two weeks recently, visiting commercial and family poultry farms, a hatchery, a [...]

Three Kinds of People

Some people are dreamers. They envision endless and enormous options and opportunities, and believe the word “impossible” doesn’t mean something can’t be done, just that it hasn’t been done – yet. They can make a difference in the lives of others, as well as in their own. Some people are practical. They see the possibilities, but also the problems in their projects and activities. They recognize obstacles – real and potential – and they understand what needs to be done to overcome them.  They can [...]

A Tribute to a True Legend

Warm. Gracious. Humble. These are the first words I thought of to describe Alice Walker when I met her on Friday. We were at the Georgia Writers Museum, where several events would be taking place on Saturday as part of an all-day celebration in honor of her 75th birthday. As she walked in, she smiled, extended her hand, and said, “Hi. I’m Alice.” I was able to restrain myself to keep from blurting out, “Yes! Yes you are!” Instead I simply smiled back, shook her [...]

The Power of the Pod

I was surprised – honored, but surprised – when a friend and former coaching client contacted me recently and asked if she could interview me for her podcast. I felt honored, because my friend is amazingly accomplished. She has a PhD and is an ordained minister. She is certified in several areas of healing arts, and has a thriving business helping and teaching others to live an authentic, happy, purposeful life. She has published a book, developed a spiritual growth app, and produced dozens of [...]