Port Pirie Christian's ninth trip to Uganda

THE DRUM: John McComb holds a traditional drum given to him by a friend in Uganda. He will return to the African country later this month to help its people.
THE DRUM: John McComb holds a traditional drum given to him by a friend in Uganda. He will return to the African country later this month to help its people.

"Bless you," says John McComb, Port Pirie's frequent traveller to the slums of Uganda.

He spoke as The Recorder interviewed him about his upcoming ninth trip to the African country on behalf of the New Life Church.

It has cost Mr McComb thousands of dollars to travel to the impoverished nation, facing the threat of ebola from nearby Congo.

"I really enjoy it. Its one of the most rewarding things in my life - just to see the change in people's lives is so worth it," he said,

"I feel safer in that slum than most streets because of the positive things that the church in Kasubi has influenced in that community.

"I have been blessed to be able to go there."

Mr McComb, a plumber, made trips in December last year and January to install flushing toilets under a $6500 grant from a plumbing company.

"They need flushing toilets because of the risk of typhoid and malaria," he said.

His daughter Megan, 19, will accompany him on his trip later this month.

CHILDREN: Megan McComb with some of the children helped by her father John's trips to Uganda on behalf of New Life Church.

CHILDREN: Megan McComb with some of the children helped by her father John's trips to Uganda on behalf of New Life Church.

He said that as he leaves, Pastor Jonah Gershibon Kawere, of the Freedom Centre The Big Church in Kasubi, would arrive in Port Pirie.

Mr McComb's first trip was to speak to churches to encourage them in their activities. His church raised $9000 to fix a drain in the slums of the capital city Kampali.

"In 2016 Dan Deroga and Andrew Velez and I did a solar system for an orphanage in the scrub at Kiboga," he said.

He and Mr Velez did the same project in Myanmar.

"You could see the people's eyes light up to see a solar panel light and to be able to charge their mobile phones," he said.

"It was an interesting trip. We had to get out of the car to cross a bridge in case it collapsed."

He will continue the work of recent trips in sponsoring small businesses to offer low-interest loans and guidance to make traders successful and have a positive impact in the community.

"My heart is in Africa," Mr McComb said.

He performs his work with traders under the international Business for Transformation program.

In this trip, he will help businesses in the west of the country at Kagando in the "middle of nowhere" next to the Congo.

"There are billboards in the area warning of ebola," he said.

"Kagando is about as high above sea level as Mount Remarkable and the mountains are 4000 metres above it," he said.

"At night it looks like you can see the stars and it is really the huts on the mountainside."

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