By MARK MAYNARD, Amy For Africa

ASHLAND, Ky. – Even before he takes the first step of the Marshall University Half Marathon on Nov. 5, Jarek’s Journey has already been a success.

Jarek Compston, the 6-year-old son of Chris and Amy Compston of the Amy For Africa mission, has surpassed his $5,000 goal for sending Christmas gifts to Uganda. The goal has been increased to $7,500 so AFA can provide a Christmas meal along with the gifts to the 1,000 Ugandans who come to the gift distribution.

Meanwhile, Jarek runs and runs and runs.


“We have been preparing for Jarek’s half marathon and he has done very, very well,” said his mother Amy. “He has pushed himself (and) he is getting stronger. We went nine miles and he pushed through that and this week we’ll do 10 miles and then race day is Nov. 5.”

Jarek has run 5Ks and 10Ks and a five-mile competition in preparation for the Marshall University Half Marathon where he will be the event’s youngest participant ever.

But Amy Compston said the community’s generous into this effort is what has blessed her heart.

“As of Oct. 23, we officially reached $5,000, which will pay for shipping 1,000 Christmas gifts to the children of Uganda,” she said.

Sixty-three different sponsors have donated, she said. “Some have given a little and some have given a lot and we are so thankful for every person who has helped us in this endeavor,” Amy said. “But people keep giving and they want to give so God has laid it on our heart to feed every child, man or woman who comes to the gift distribution, a Christmas dinner which will consist of rice, beans, chicken and whatever the Ugandans prepare that day.”

The additional $2,500 will be enough to provide the meal for the expected 1,000 Ugandans, Amy said.

“So if you would like to still be a part of Jarek’s Journey you can give today at and we will make sure these people have the most wonderful Christmas that we can offer them,” she said.

Amy For Africa will be sending a 10-person team to Uganda from Nov. 25 to Dec. 12 to distribute the gifts, disciple new Christians and also participate in the inaugural graduation of the El-Shaddai Nursery and Primary School, which AFA fully operates through donations.