I recently read up on the progress of Ryan and Sara Hall’s organisation, the Hall Steps Foundation. In case you don’t recognise their name here’s some photos to jog your memory (or fill you in) and demonstrate what I mean when I say they are the real deal– legit professional runners. I think it is pretty incredible CRP Uganda even connected with them, let alone what happened while we were both in Uganda… (read on).
In addition to being professional runners the Halls have on-going projects throughout East Africa, including micro-loan sponsorships and a health clinic, and have partnered with IRIS ministries on multiple projects in Mozambique. These two are an incredible couple- running phenomenons with hearts of gold, lovingly serving the poor and destitute.
As I was catching up on their blog I came across an article Sara wrote about her time in Uganda last summer and much to my surprise she included her visit to the North and wrote about her time spent with the kids @ Coroom Primary School. We’re famous! Alright maybe not “famous” like the Halls are famous- but still! How exciting! She sure had wonderful things to say about her experience and I wanted to share this with you. Here’s an except,
“I ended my time in Uganda up north in Lire with Children of Peace Uganda, an organization which advocates for former LRA child soldiers and others victimized by the war with the LRA (the orphaned or born in captivity, often a result of rape) through rehabilitation and education. Recently Kelsey Owens, as featured in an article in Runners World, piloted a running program with these children to help with the rehabilitation efforts through running and I trekked up north to run a 1.6 mi race with these precious children who had overcome more in their lifetime than I could imagine. Once again, I was amazed at how much they enjoyed running, taking off from the gun and running so hard that the girl I was running with at the end was weaving and on the verge of passing out in the final 400m. These children knew how to overcome pain and discomfort, this race was nothing compared to what they face on a daily basis. I loved to see, too, how running was helping them assimilate back into their communities, where they are often seen as outsiders when returning from the war, as former child soldiers made friends with villagers out on the run. I was reminded how the gift of running can bring light in the darkest places and doesn’t require a lot of coordination or expensive gear.”
Big thanks to Sara for the time she took to come up to Lira and for her kind words and reflection.
Ameri Matek, friends.