Post by: McKamie Chandler
Whenever someone returns from a trip overseas, everyone asks, “How was your time in [insert country]?” The question is well-meaning, but an answer usually can’t last longer than 60 seconds before people lose interest. I find it’s best to have a prepared answer so a big part of my reflection on my time in Uganda is answering this question: how do I want to remember my internship and what do I want others to know about it?
Now that I’ve left and the need to keep spirits high has waned, it’s easy to define my internship by of all the things that went wrong. “How was your internship in Uganda?” “Oh, it was so hard. They had COVID lockdowns the entire time I was there. I had to work from my hotel room. Because of curfew, I ate dinner at 3:30pm most days. Private vehicles were banned so I had to walk everywhere…” And by then my 60 seconds are up. While that summary is true, it is also disingenuous. The Lord convicted me of this when he reminded me of just how sad I was to leave Uganda. I longed for a couple more weeks to dig into the friendships I had made, to savor the rich culture, to tackle another case at the Supreme Court.
So, when someone asks me about my time in Uganda, this is what I will say: My internship was amazing. I interned with Justice Chibita of the Supreme Court of Uganda. It was such an honor to be mentored by a Justice who deeply loves the Lord. A lockdown happened while I was there, but so many great things came out of it. I got really close with the other American interns—it’s amazing how adversity brings people together. Locals (including Justice Chibita) wanted to make sure we had a positive experience, so they regularly invited us for meals or to their homes. Because movement was restricted in Kampala, we used the weekends to get away and see the beauty of Uganda: waterfalls, village life, coffee plantations, and even a safari!
This post was written by a Center for Global Justice Intern. The views expressed in this post do not necessarily reflect those of Regent University, Regent Law School, or the Center for Global Justice.