Student Travels to Uganda on Mission Trip


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Sophomore Lizzy Hill visits with the locals in Uganda.

Max Bowman, Writer

Tear gas, machine guns, military trucks and shields, Hunger Games this is not. Uganda may not ring any bells for most readers, but for sophomore Lizzy Hill, the word Uganda is a catalyst for remembrance of a experience many won’t experience in their lifetime. Recently, Hill and her church group from Austin Christian Fellowship went on a mission trip to the exotic country of Uganda.

Africa was a new place to go and a different experience. It was so good to just dive myself into a whole different culture, especially in the middle of the school year which was kind of crazy.

— Lizzy Hill

Hailing from a very devout family, Hill and her troop jumped on the chance to spread their faith and discover how prayer worked in different countries.

“We are a very religious family,” said Hill. “And, just in the way, religiously speaking, the way they worship is just so much different than what we do here.”

For two weeks Lizzy and her team stayed in the Uganda town Jinja. They would split up into three groups during daylight and have men from the troop go around and preach to a village and all the surrounding villages that accompanied it.

“The people would come in; they would bring their kids and younger relatives and us women would take care of the kids and play with them,” said Hill. “We would read them Bible stories but it was mostly playing which was really fun.”

While the trip may have certainly sounded like all fun and games, a undercurrent of danger lied just in the foreground. Unfortunately, the country’s beauty holds a extremely corrupted government, and Hill’s team happened to be caught in the middle of it.

“When we were there it was during the elections for presidency, though they have a very corrupt voting system,” said Hill. “They have the same type of rules as they do here. It’s just supposed to be one term for four years and the president currently has been in power for the past 30 years. If there’s any candidates that are really big competitors, he’ll try to kill them off or scare them off. Even send them into exile!”’

Due to this extreme corruption, citizens have responded with mass rioting and sacrifices in frustration over the neverending cycle of events. Turning a once peaceful country, into that of a warzone.

“We actually drove through this town called Iganga known for riots. We were driving and there were these people with masks,” said Hill. “The streets had tons of military and police and there was these giant military trucks with machine guns coming around. It kinda reminded me of the Hunger Games in a way with the all the masks and shields and everything else going on.”

While the government has certainly taken the steps to enforce a nonlethal approach to the uprisings, unfortunately fatal events have, and will continue, to occur.

“The giant guns they were carrying were just spraying tear gas and they mostly had rubber pellet bullets,” said Hill. “They would occasionally kill people but it wasn’t like a massacre or anything like that.”
Amidst all of the chaos. Hill managed to keep a positive and open mind to all the events around her.

“It was more exciting to see than scary,” said Hill. “It was really nice to break away from home as well as immerse myself in a different culture.”



See more pictures from the trip here