Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Death is Preventable

I came back to Canada with a new appreciation for the country I was born and raised in.  

In the past,  I had travelled to our Home of Angels at least a couple of times a year, but this time was different.  I saw people struggling in a way I had never witnessed before.  Not only was there no rain, the crops were dead and the swamps had dried up.  By the time I left to return home, the level of water was so low that the town of Jinja had to turn it off.  

Many are dying daily.  Last week Edwin and I had 6 personal friends pass.

I know I don't have time to bake enough banana bread to cover the cost of this well, so Edwin and I are asking for help.  If any of you could find it in your heart to donate whatever you can, we would be so grateful.  You will help save the lives of the poorest of the poor... our neighbours.

We have set up an account on Go Fund Me in hopes of raising enough money to drill a bore hole.  Please go to the following link.


Thank you for taking the time to read this.

Barb and Edwin

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Turning Desperation Into Hope

These are sobering times we live in today and the cries for help are frequently inaudible.  Here in Jinja, we are witnessing severe draught causing famine with many deaths weekly.  The suffering is not only severe in our community but around the world.  What can we do when our backs are up against the wall and we have no where to turn when in trouble?  Can we call on God?  Yes, we can and that is what we are all presently doing.....calling on our Father to watch over and help the suffering.

As I write this, we have just had information that Derrick, one of our children has passed away.  We had a request that he spend Christmas with his dying Grandmother in their village one hour away.  She passed Boxing Day.  Jimmy, his brother returned but Derrick became ill and was unable to be moved.  Causes are unknown but we know that little Derrick has gone to be with Jesus.  It's a sad day at Home of Angels.

Water is becoming a severe problem.  The city of Jinja is currently providing water at a cost to the people around us but once the water levels go down, they will also turn it off and everyone will suffer.  We have been blessed with water at our home but the crisis we have on our hands is trying to help the others that will have none.  Desperation leads to panic and we will have a stampede on our hands if we open our well to them.  It's a helpless feeling.

Even though situations might be difficult at the moment, we wanted to show you the amazing Christmas we had celebrating the birth of Jesus.  This part of the blog was the "Hope" side of the story and we want to share it with you all.

Due to famine, we watched 3 different groups of children climb the same tree in hopes of finding a mango to eat.  A few lucked out with mangos infected with bugs and others went home with nothing.  It broke our hearts to see the disappointment so Edwin and I gave a few shillings to purchase a chapati instead.  I will never forget how they skipped home with such excitement.

Our Christmas tree was a little different than ours would be in Canada but the decorating was just as fun.  We had no tree so Paul cut down some branches and put them into a pot.  We had no decorations so the children learned to string popcorn and make hand made chains.  There was a lot of laughter and excitement in the grass hut that day.

The Gleaner's soup is now known as a delicacy here at our Home of Angels.  It's all in the love of preparing it with everyone in the family participating.  Not sure how I was chosen to cut the 5 kilos of onions but I didn't shed a tear.  Good training Elaine!

A surprise visitor from the community arrived before the dinner was cooked and donated 10 kilos of meat.  Brady, a Muslim and Chairman of the Youth in our community was very proud that he could partake in our Christmas party.

Thank you Lottie for donating the soda for the Christmas dinner.  It always is the highlight as these children would never have the opportunity of having such a wonderful treat.

This little fellow melted my heart.  He came up to Aunty Joy after he was finished and thanked her for cooking a meal for him.  She was very moved because he was one of the really hungry children in the neighbourhood.

Our Aunty Joy really deserves this oven.  She ended up cooking the entire Christmas meal without outside help and did an amazing job.  We are blessed to have this wonderful woman taking care of the children.  She loves them as her own.

The goats in Malindi village are doing well and the tribe is up to 208 in number.  Thanks again to Thomas for donating the funds for purchasing them and patiently waiting for a picture.  It hasn't been easy getting to the village through the dust.

Meet Juliet, the proud receiver of a sewing machine and Bible.  Juliet was one of the women that lost her livelihood in the market fire.  With 8 children to feed, she has been blessed by a thoughtful donor to receive this gift and very grateful for it.

The children going to church on Christmas day

We's like to show you a short video of our new little ones learning English.  You will be amazed.  The teacher is 4 years old.

Thanks to all of you who supported us through 2016 and made it possible to grow the way we have.

May God bless you all and your families with good health and happiness in the New Year 2017.