08 July 2010

The BIG NEWS...

We are moving!

But staying in Uganda... with Gaba Bible Institue!

We are just going to move the school, the staff and our family!

Two weeks ago the Board of Governors for Gaba Bible Institute unanimously approved the purchase of a 10+ acre campus which has finished and unfinished buildings that will eventually have capacity for 750 students helping us to become a university!

This has been an act of God from beginning to end... a few months ago I became convicted that the move to the high school campus in Gaba was not the right move... the high school was unable to find a new campus and the community was struggling with the decision to relocate their children... so we backed out of the agreement not knowing where we would go... but knowing that it was best for everyone...

I spent weeks driving EVERYWHERE in search of land... remember the post about getting the Landcruiser stuck? Seriously, I went everywhere...


After a few frustrating weeks... I heard about a college in Gayaza... there was a wealthy Ugandan who had built a College of Science and Technology in South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda... but wanted to sell his un-finished campus in Uganda...


The campus was appraised for 1.15 Billion Ugandan Shillings in December 2008 which at the time was $622,000 with the exchange rate at the time (1:1850). Since that time inflation in land values easily pushes the campus to the $700,000 - 750,000.

Today we agreed to buy it for $350,000!



I have learned that... "if it sounds too good to be true, it must be"... especially when it comes to business deals in Africa... but in this case I really believe that God has given us this campus.


One anxious Sunday a month back I drove Christine and the boys to the campus. Christine loved it and we ended up having tea with the owner... when I shared the vision for the school God did a work in the owner's heart... that week he called his benefactors in Germany and they signed off to cut us this deal... the rest is history...



This move changes everything...

1. We will be leaving our home in Bunga and building a house near the school (when God provides the funds)

2. The boys will have to switch schools since we are moving 40 KM North East...

3. Most of my staff will be moving... although 6 already have houses or land in Gayaza...

4. We will be moving 120+ students, 25 staff, 6,000 books, 45 computers and a load of furniture... while raising $250,000 to finish the purchase and another $150,000 - 200,000 to complete enough construction to move in...

5. We are re-branding the school. Gaba really doesn't work for a name when you are located in Gayaza. GBI still works but we are considering Africa Renewal University or Africa Renewal Bible Institute. Any votes?

6. We are increasing our capacity from 60 students (although we have 120+) to a campus that can one day host 750!

Seriously... this is HUGE!

But all I can think about is the amazing impact on the church and christian organizations in East Africa with another 750 leaders equipped each year... it's worth the effort it will take to make this HUGE leap of faith!

7 comments:

Lisa said...

Soooooo great! Thrilled for your news and more thrilled to see what God might be pleased to do with all that space and all those students!

ben said...

This is WOW! Congratulations!!!
Though I hate to lose you as a neighbour and seeing the boys at school. But I guess you won't be moving so soon, is it?

Holly said...

That is terrific! The campus looks beautiful. Hey - doesn't that make you 40 km closer to California? That makes me glad. :-)

marcie said...

This is incredible!!! Fundraising needed? Will we have another Atherstone U.S. tour soon? Let me know if I can help!!

marcie said...

How do I post this to Facebook? Would love to share...

Wendy said...

Awesome news Jeff! What an exciting time for GBI... or ARU or ARBI... ;-)

Kathy said...

Wow! How exciting! And it's beautiful! I vote for Africa Renewal Bible Institute.

When will you be moving? I was hoping that one of my employees could take some courses starting in August (or is it September), but that will only work if you are still in Gaba for a while. He is supposed to be checking to see if he can register for classes.