As far as stories go, I went to visit Cherish by myself, so I didn’t know anyone going into it. Thankfully the staff and members of the local community couldn’t have been any more friendly and welcoming. I specifically became close with a couple guys names Sam, Alan and Eddie (and many more that for the sake of brevity I won’t go on to list). They saw me basically every day, made a point to say hello, invited me to things that they were doing, let me work with them, eat with them, and play games with them. It was as if I was their brother. I would play soccer with them 2-3 times per week and go watch soccer games on TV late at night; they were really amazing.
The night before I left Uganda to return back home, they put together a surprise party for me where they invited a bunch of guys to come over and play one last soccer game. It was an absolute blast – they also then had a camp fire cookout where they roasted skewers of delicious meat and we drank sodas all basically to honor my time there. It was the equivalent of a feast while we listened to music and danced completely drenched in sweat. Hard to describe how loved and cared for I felt.
Written by: Nick Jankovsky
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