Kisses for Katie tells the story of Katie Davis, who decides to skip out on going to college and instead goes to Uganda. First she goes for just a few weeks during her winter break with her mother. (Her parents said she could only go if someone else would go with her – figuring it would be impossible for her to find someone able to take that much time off of work to go with her. Once they realized that this was really important to her and she really wanted to do this, her mother agreed to go with her.)
After that short trip to Uganda her world was completely changed and she believed that she had a calling from God to go back there and help out whoever she could. By 19, Katie had adopted 6 children. By 22, she ended up with 14! At first she was not sure how she was going to do it, but she trusted in God and felt that she was being guided in the right direction. She takes in children to help get them cleaned up and a bit more nourished.
She started a foundation to help make sure kids got an education. The cost was relatively inexpensive by USA standards, but not by Uganda standards. She went back to the US to do fundraising to help pay for students uniforms and school supplies. The parents back in Uganda were forever thankful for her help.
Many in the community call her “mommy”, not just her children. She even has a pet monkey. And a dog. That had puppies, twice! But somehow she seems to balance it all and is certainly an asset to the community.
If you’d like to find out more about what Katie is doing or donate to help her help others, you can find all that information on her blog, http://kissesfromkatie.blogspot.com
Also, to find out more about her ministries you can visit http://www.amazima.org/index.html and visit the store to buy items made by hard working mothers. I have a few of these necklaces (though not bought through Katie’s site) and they are really nice and great conversation starters!
This book was incredibly inspiring, and I have already wanted to go to Africa but this book definitely made me want to go all the more to try and help out. I am not sure I will ever get the opportunity to do so, so I am definitely happy to see that there are others out there not only drawn to go but out there and doing it.
I received a review e-copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.
About the Book
What would cause an eighteen-year-old old senior class president and homecoming queen from Nashville, Tennessee, to disobey and disappoint her parents by forgoing college, break her little brother’s heart, lose all but a handful of her friends (because the rest of them think she has gone off the deep end), and break up with the love of her life, all so she could move to Uganda, where she knew only one person but didn’t know any of the language? A passion to make a difference. Katie Davis left over Christmas break her senior year for a short mission trip to Uganda and her life was turned completely inside out. She found herself so moved by the people and children of Uganda that she knew her calling was to return and care for them. She has given up a relatively comfortable life-at a young age-to care for the less fortunate of this world. She was so moved by the need she witnessed, she’s centered her life around meeting that need. Katie, a charismatic and articulate young woman, is in the process of adopting 13 children in Uganda, and she completely trusts God for daily provision for her and her family.
Despite the rough conditions in which Katie lives, she has found a life of service to God to be one of great joy. Katie’s children bring constant delight and help her help others by welcoming whoever comes to their door. As the challenges grow, so does Katie’s faith and her certainty that what she’s doing in Uganda, one person at a time, will have far-reaching rewards. It isn’t the life she planned, but it is the life she loves.
To further her reach into the needs of Ugandans, Katie established Amazima Ministries. The ministry matches orphaned children with sponors worldwide. Each sponsor’s $300/year provides schooling, school supplies, three hot meals a day, minor medical care, and spiritual encouragement. Katie expected to have forty children in the program; she had signed up 150 by January 2008; today it sponsors over 400. Another aspect of the ministry is a feeding program created for the displaced Karamojong people-Uganda’s poorest citizens. The program feeds lunch to over 1200 children Monday-Friday and sends them home with a plate of food; it also offers basic medical care, Bible study, and general health training.
Katie Davis, now 22, is more than fascinating, she’s inspiring, as she has wholeheartedly answered the call to serve.