Our Vision

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P.O. Box 620170, Kalomo, Zambia
Our vision is to bring the love of Jesus Christ to the children of Zambia through physical and spiritual means.Our hearts longing is to empower the local church and village community to meet the great need of the many orphans and widows through the development of an orphanage.(Psalm 68:5-6a)

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Orphanage Happenings for November


Thank you for your continued prayers for baby Isaac.  Since our big scare with him a month or so ago being so sick (read previous posts for more info) he has been doing better, drinking well and going from 2.6kg to 4.2kg.  However, mid November he began having diarrhea, vomiting, and having a lot of pain, being unable to sleep.  Knowing how quickly a little baby Ennie Isaac Editedcan go from bad to worse, we decided to be cautious and take him to the hospital right away.  We went to the same place, 3 hours away and again they admitted Isaac.  Since it was his second time back, in such a short time, the doctors think that he  has been exposed to HIV and most likely is infected with the virus but despite testing him both times, due to lack of blood they will have to wait until he is 6 months old to test again.  There is a possibility that there is also another medical issue (an descended testicle) that is causing him to have these issues  but obviously still being so small, his health is still a matter of great prayer concern for us.  Ennie is doing a wonderful job caring for him and is making sure that he is kept warm and healthy as best as she can, but we know that ultimately God is the only one who can ensure his safety and well being.  Thank you for your prayers for him up to this point and as Isaac crosses your mind, please continue to lift him and Ennie up to the Lord – especially for wisdom in regards to his care while we are gone. 

Orphanage Preps complete

Rachel family Apart from all the physical work that needed to be done before we left for South Africa, another BIG task was to make sure that the orphanage was well provided for and prepared for our time away.  While being gone during the rainy season is a blessing because it is a slower time “work wise” it does pose difficulties with getting supplies for the orphanage (especially for the locals) due to the poor road conditions.  Local transport is not as available so with that in mind, we not only had to attempt to purchase all the orphanage consumables needed for 3 months (worse case scenario)  but also make sure that all the babies had the next size up in clothes.  Everything from medicine, to gretchen sorting toiletries (soap, toothpaste, toilet paper etc), to food supplies (rice, beans, kapentas etc), to formula had to be inventoried, budgeted for, and purchased in bulk.  For us that involved several trips to different stores and venders to get the right amount and be able to transport it all back to the orphanage.  Praise God for his provision not only of money in order to purchase so many things in advance but also in additional help of Gretchen (from Kalomo) and our friends from South Africa to help us in this big task.  

Help from South Africa

Approximately a week before we left, we were blessed with a visit from two dear ladies from South Africa – Mariann and Sannie.  Mariann came as a representative of the Dutch Reformed Church Marinaan and Sannie editedin Rooihuiskraal, South Africa, while Sannie was an older friend of  hers.  While neither of them were “spring chickens” in regards to their biological age – their spirit and youthfulness of heart showed  through in how quickly they jumped into helping with anything they could.  From painting,Mariaan clean to cleaning and organizing the library (we had some damage from some rats that decided to make their home in some of the preschool supplies), varnishing, to putting together furniture, cooking, cleaning, organizing school supplies, mending orphanage and personal clothing, spending time with the house mothers encouraging and doing Bible Study with them,  hemming curtains that were too long, and watching Jakob – there was almost nothing Sannie editedthat they weren’t willing to do with a smile and a great attitude.  We enjoyed getting to know these two dear ladies and hear all the ways that God has lead, directed, and provided for them over the years.  Thank you ladies for all your hard work and all that you taught us while here.  

Currently in south AfricaAmbers big belly

We are now currently in South Africa visiting friends, family and supporters, awaiting the arrival of our second son (due Dec  18th).  Our hope is to return to Zambia sometime mid/late January but the exact date is yet unknown because a lot depends on when Jakob’s brother decides to arrive and how long it will take for us to get his birth documents for South Africa and the States in order. 

Current prayer requests

-Please pray for the orphanage during our “time away”.  While it is good to put more responsibility into the hands of the locals there (our goal is to one day make it as self sustainable as possible) to help them be not as dependant upon us, it is a big adjustment for the house mothers, the staff, and the orphanage committee. 

Oct 2011 035-Please pray that the rains come at the appropriate time and that God provides the locals there with the wisdom and manpower to take care of the garden and orphanage crops that we hope will sustain us through the next year.

-Please pray for God’s hand of protection over the property and things on it while we are away.  Already, since we have left – the well, the tractor, and one it’s implements have already broken.  With no one there with the skill to fix it –they are now planting and doing the rest of the field care by hand until we get back.  Praise God that they were able to get the pump working again. 

- Please pray for the health of Ennie familyour children and staff while away (especially baby Isaac).  While they do have means to get to a clinic or hospital in emergency (or pre planned) purposes, travel during the rainy season (esp. with out us there) is definitely more difficult and out in the bush, anything can happen. 

- Lastly, please pray that God enables the children, staff, and locals to focus on the true meaning of Christmas and be able to celebrate and cherish in their hearts the greatest gift of all that was given to us.

Belita familyWhile it is a bit scary being away for such a time, it is a good reminder to us of whom we are relying on to meet the needs of the orphanage and provide for them – us or God – the one who started this project, loves these children and villagers more than we ever could, and who promised to complete the Good work that He started. 

Thank you for your continued partnership, prayers, and support of us and the ministry over these past years.  We and all the kids, staff, and villagers involved with the project thank you, and wish you a Merry Christmas, and a God blessed New Year in 2012. 

Projects completed!

After the past few weeks of long work hours, late nights, and little rest we are happy to report that most of the work that we had hoped to get done before the rains came is now complete!  God has been good to give us the strength, energy, wisdom, help, and grace needed for each day and although all of us are quite tired (both from the intense heat and the long work hours) it is so nice to look around and see all that God has allowed to be brought to completion recently.

The Preschool

preschool edited We are happy to report that the preschool is plastered, floor completed, windows and doors installed, door varnished, walls painted, shelves hung and stocked in the store room, and furniture complete.  Alyssa now has the preschool table editedclassroom and store room set up almost exactly as she wants it and now all that is missing is the children.    Did I mention that all the furniture that is there had to be built by Alyssa and Jako?  It took several weeks to get from the raw, uncut, rough pieces of wood called “planks” to finished, planed, cut, routed, screwed and nailed, varnished furniture but now all is ready and perfectly fitted for the children that will start coming at the opening early February after our return from South Africa.Oct 2011 002Oct Nov 2011 099

Alyssa’s Flat

Amber Painting Alyssa is also very happy to have officially moved into her newly completed flat.  Just like the preschool, lots of work went into installing doors and windows, painting, getting basic furniture, and making her place her own.  Now not only does she have her own “haven” to be able to do all her office work and rest at the end of a long day but now there is also additional accommodation available for any single ladies that may want to come and visit/help. DSC_0155_edited-1

Visit Alyssa’s website at www.alyssabolles.blogspot.com in order to see more pictures of the completed flat and preschool and to hear more about it from her perspective.    

A new warehouse roof

Jako building roof And if those first two building projects were not enough to focus on these past several months, we recently decided that there was now a urgent need to put up a big outdoor carport/open warehouse roof in order to protect our vehicles, tractor, and various tractor implements and other things from the rain and mud this rainy season.  No small project considering the size of the roof that was needed was 8m x 15m (approx 24x45ft) and it was now the hottest time of the whole year – not the best time to be working in the full heat of the shade on top of shiny tin.  Needless to say there were lots of days where Jako was up early to work on it and then late into the night in order to make use of all the cool weather he could.  With time getting short before we had to leave there were days when we wondered if this would be completed in time but now we are happy to report that the roof is now up and complete.roof complete  Eventually we hope to close up at least some of the sides a bit and install a few shelves along the one wall but for now the vehicles, tractor, quad, and various big power tools (like the planer) and building materials are stored safely underneath.

Field and Crop Preparations

The last big “work” project that we felt we had to tackle before we left was to prepare the orphanage crop field for planting this Charles year.  With everything else needing to be done we didn’t how we  were going to have time to get everything ready but God was good and provided Sakumbilla (one of our local part time general workers) with the ability and desire to be able to work the tractor for us.   With the help of Charles (our local foreman), this enabled Jako to keep working on the other projects (mainly the warehouse roof) while they tended to clearing and plowing the land, preparing it for the planting of the corn.  Jakob raincoatAt the time of our leaving, there hadn’t yet been enough rain for us to plant the 1 1/2 hectares that had been prepared but plans are in place for Sakumbilla and Charles to do that at the appropriate time in our absence.  The local orphanage committee has pledged their help as well.  Please pray with us that God would provide the right amount of rain at the right time and both wisdom and discretion for the locals to know how to tend to this important task while we are gone.

Bugging Out!

Just on a fun note – as much as rainy season is often the favorite time of year for us as everything is new, fresh and breathes of “new life” it is often the time that the bugs seem to take over as well.  So, if bugs are not your favorite thing – you might want to consider another time of year to visit and help us.  However, if you like to see things beautiful and green – now is the time to come – and if you do – you might even be offered a tasty treat of the big flying termites (shown on our outside kitchen sink) nicely fried by the locals.  They are a true delicacy here.  Here are a few pictures of our recent bug invasion – both inside our house and in our outside kitchen.

bugs inside bugs kitchen