Thoughts of Uganda 1-5 December 2010

January 3, 2011

Chaplain, Lt. Col. David Terrinoni wrote

What a mission! I went on my first visit to one of our Civil Affairs (CA) team missions in Moroto, Uganda early December. I admit, I wasnt sure what to expect, but the team, under the leadership of Staff Sgt. Ken Bryant, has fulfilled every aspect of the Combined Joint Task Force Horn of Africas 3-D Defense, Development and Diplomacy approach.

Under these three pillars, we encountered key leader engagements. Driving to the Karamoja District, we met a new captain who took over the local Uganda Peoples Defense Force (UPDF) company. The captain and his men were polite but the conversation was reserved until he discovered that the CA team was going to visit Friar Hillard of the San Paolo Church. Hillard is well respected by the people of the region as evident by the sudden change in the UPDFs demeanor. Our conversation went from polite and reserved to fun and pleasant and a new military-to-military friendship was created.

After making new connections with the UPDF, we went to visit Hillard, since he was a key religious leader in the region. HIllards mission has grown tremendously in the last three years. They have built a church, classrooms and enough housing to take care of 200 children. As Hillard stated, the children are the future hope for peace and stability in the region and his mission is teaching the children a new way to think and act.

Afterward, we went to the Mourita region to look at a completed water project. The United States helped fund the project with the Ugandan government. The people of Uganda performed the work and now there is a reservoir to catch water during the rainy season that cattle can drink during the dry season. A dozen people used this important regional improvement as we watched and the local residents can now enjoy the results of joint cooperative efforts between a government and its people.
I was excited to join the mission of the CJTF HOA and now I am a firm believer in the 3-D approach and our part in the mission to help Africans bring stability, security and peace to their part of the world.

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