Scott Montgomery was raised in southwest Virginia and was privileged to have access to a fine education and an environment which instilled the value of a strong work ethic. By having great mentors such as his teachers, athletic coaches, Boy Scout leaders, and family members he had already acquired many values needed to succeed in what they each expected he should want to achieve. In his last year of high school he learned a lesson of mortality when his grandmother’s life was cut short after a routine medical operation. He drove his family to Florida the next night and at the funeral (with little understanding) he promised that would make her proud.

During college he began to learn how to operate outside of a comfort zone, until during his second year he learned that he had the digestive disease, Crohns-Colitis. He was told he would have to take medicines in order to live with it from that day forward. He learned during the rest of his studies at Longwood University lessons of struggle, enduring, and even dollar value retail method LIFO. He was able to graduate having only missed one week of class during a hospital stay.

Upon graduating he began studying for the CPA exam and was well for a few months. This was due to now taking a drug called Remicade in an intravenous form each month. Six months after graduation he had completed one of four parts to the CPA exam, but became ill again. By the end of February, he was in worse health than ever, receiving recommendations to have his colon removed, and was 90% of the time reserved to his childhood home. Before visiting a specialist at the University of North Carolina, he had begun changing his diet and overall lifestyle after reading of individuals healing without the use of medication. After discussing his plan with the specialist, he was told that he would return “even sicker” than his current condition of making trips to the bathroom every hour of each day.

Scott spent two days completely relearning everything he thought he knew about food and began a plan to become well. By then he realised he no longer accepted that the cause of his illness was a design flaw within his body. He had acquired faith that it was an absurd idea that he was brought into the world to suffer. Therefore he would one day be healthy again if he simply respects and listens to his body. By the end of the summer after nearly six grueling months he was beginning to live a normal life and he began studying again.

After this experience and with the help of some new role models, he began to realize what he had learned over the past six months. These role models had learned what he was starting to learn, that the goals and aspirations which he was exposed to until now were goals that are unlikely to satisfy even the dullest of individuals. How many celebrities have found no happiness after satisfying all of their material wants and desires?

Unlike his prior role models (who he still uphold as fine persons who have many things to be proud of) their focus was how to reach true happiness and improve the lives of others, most importantly the ‘least’ of these persons. (greatest need)

After finishing the CPA exam he applied for a few jobs with little enthusiasm, but also one which appeared to be everything he was looking for as well as within two hours of his hometown. Within four days of sending his cover letter and resume, he was working as an accountant with Kissito Healthcare and Kissito Healthcare International. KHI at the time was supporting a government health center in East Uganda and also in process of constructing a hospital in rural Ethiopia. Scott was excited to travel overseas. Due to having many wide responsibilities at Kissito, as well as a demanding accounting position, he was unable to travel during his first year with Kissito.

In September, Scott was offered the position which he had originally applied for, with a change of being stationed permanently in East Africa. The timing was perfect, and he immediately began winding up his affairs and packing to leave in one month. Over the past year, he had learned many skills and facets to managing all the support functions of a nonprofit. This opportunity would now teach him the challenges and skills required to accomplish goals of improving the lives of others. He was now reassured that he was on the right path, by fate or chance he was saved of a life of pleasure with no purpose. Alternatively he became aware of a life filled with immense and nearly unbearable challenges, but also with the opportunity to live with purpose.

Scott moved to Yei, South Sudan in July 2013. He is currently implementing a demonstration farm at the Chrisco Church of Yei. The demonstration farm will serve as a location for testing crops which are not grown in the area as well as different planting or management methods. Also during 2014, Roots International is excited to introduce ox plowing to the area. With your support, we are able to continue to explore more opportunities to assist the people and the country.

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