We would like you to meet Bella, a model of powerful impact and our new cottage leader in Uganda. First, we asked her to introduce herself. She responded:
I am Bella from Uganda, age 25. I am a mother to a 4-year-old son. His name is Alexander. I am a student of BYU Pathway Connect Worldwide, now in my second year. I believe after gaining some education, I’ll be able to get better employment which will support both me and my family and the people surrounding me.
I love working in my community and serving those in need just like our dear Lord Jesus Christ. I believe in the works of the Big Ocean Women organization and its accomplishments. Together me and you shall bring change in the lives of beautiful women out there. 🥰
Bella’s story of being a model of powerful impact began with a service missionary, Lori Cummings, who powerfully influenced Bella by encouraging and supporting her in her goals to get an education and start a business to support her family. She wanted to start a mobile money business offering micro loans, selling airtime, data bundles, and voice bundles. Lori put her in touch with Ann from Big Ocean Women for help and support. Bella wrote a proposal to help build this business which was approved by Big Ocean Women, qualifying her for funding. Additionally, she found Big Ocean Women on Facebook and learned about its tenets and “amazing works.”
Bella’s business is in place and doing well, but she isn’t content with just her own success. She knows others could also benefit from education as a way to become self-reliant. She wanted to start a Big Ocean Women cottage in Uganda to share her passion and knowledge and lift other women, especially teenage moms.
Bella eventually received formal training to lead the new cottage in Uganda. Carolina Allen, Big Ocean Women founder, provided this training. Of Bella she said, [She] is very engaged, smart, and willing to help her community. She’s truly and genuinely concerned about the issue of teen pregnancies and the plight of young moms in her community. Bella is a single mother herself and knows well the issues these girls face. She works tirelessly to make sure that she and her 4-year-old son are taken care of. She’s also an important resource for her extended family. They look to her for support. … She is innovative and a forward thinker. She’s dependable and savvy with planning and executing projects. We feel so lucky to have her on board.
Bella’s cottage consists largely of single mothers, four of them in their teens who have recently given birth or are currently expecting. Even those who are married are responsible for helping to provide for their families. Realizing they will not be able to pursue a formal education right now, she plans to organize classes in tailoring, obtain sewing machines, and allow them to use this skill to provide for their families. She is already beginning plans for this venture.
She greatly values knowledge and education. When asked how she hopes to be a model of powerful impact for her son she said, I would give him the best education ever because I have learned that education is great. With knowledge, we can stand, work for ourselves, and help others. With no knowledge, life is hard. That is why I am a mom and a student.
She said her faith in God gives her hope and peace. It allows her to believe that with God all is possible and things will work out. She is certain other members of her cottage and Big Ocean Women can help more women succeed.
Her message to the world is to love one another, help, give, stand for one another, and share with others. Her greatest model of powerful impact is Jesus Christ. She wants to be like Him to stand and live for others. Her story is a perfect illustration of the ripple effect that comes from following models of powerful impact in our lives and becoming such models for others. We welcome Bella and salute her for her vision and service.