Wednesday, December 07, 2016

Another Forever Family Returns Home

This past week Linda and I had the wonderful privilege of hosting a new adoptive family and introducing them to their little girl!

International adoption is a long and rough road. It is not for the faint of heart, but, for those families with a call of God on their hearts to adopt, it is a joyous journey. There are great highs and there are deep lows but by staying focused on the prize at the end of the journey, the Lord helps each family through the process.

There once was a little girl with a very sad history but her story is now being rewritten by love, affection, joyous interaction, and acceptance.

This little girl who was growing up in an orphanage now has parents, an older sister, and a slightly younger brother to love!


We are rejoicing today because God has placed another of His little ones in a loving family!

Friday, October 21, 2016

Help for a young boy named Barto

A pastor from a neighboring village brought a father and his son to our door asking for help. Barto is 18 yrs old and he is paralyzed from the waist down.

As a young boy, Barto was healthy and attended school. But, as a result of an undiagnosed illness and several days of high fever, Barto's health deteriorated to where he lost the use of his legs. He has also lost most of the use of his arms and hands.

Barto is a bright boy but he comes from a very isolated village with no medical care available, no social services available to help families, and a family without the resources to find help for their son.

We have introduced some very basic physical therapy to the family to help Barto regain the use of his hands and arms. And, we are searching for a handicap center where he can learn a trade to help support himself and even help to support his family.

Please pray for us as we try to find ways to help this boy and his family!

Barto

Fighting for life--

Today we received a call from the hospital asking for help with a tiny little newborn named Fousseny. Fousseny is a two and half month old twin. His brother died shortly after the twins were born.

At two and half months old, Fousseny weighs only 700 grams (about 1 ½ pounds). Fousseny and his mama recently spent 2 weeks in the hospital in the city and when they returned to the village Fousseny weighed a little over 3 pounds. But, in the last three weeks he has lost all of the weight that he had gained while in the hospital.

After teaching Fousseny's mama how to prepare the formula, how to clean and sterilize the bottles, and especially to use only pure water, we enrolled him in our village milk program.

Mama will bring Fousseny to our house each week to be weighed and she will be given more milk as she needs it.


Please pray with us that Fousseny will thrive and very quickly regain the weight that he has lost!

Friday, October 14, 2016

We recently had the opportunity to do our 'back-to-school' sponsorship distribution in our village and 5 other surrounding villages. School starts late here, usually not until around the 1st of October. But, back-to-school excitement for returning students and nervousness for new students is an international occurrence and we saw and felt these emotions in each of our students here.
Our distribution included a new pack pack for each child, a reading and a math textbook, notebooks, pens, colored pencils, chalk, math sets (protractor, ruler, etc.), a 100 pound bag of rice for the family, and soap. Some of our children also received special gifts that some of our wonderful sponsors had sent for their children. Some of those gifts were special things like a new bike, a new outfit of clothing, a solar lamp, etc.
We cannot say 'thank you' loud enough for our outstanding Sheltering Wings sponsors. I hope that you realize the amazing part that you are playing in your sponsored child's life. You are giving them the encouragement to do their best in school and therefore a hope for the future.

Your children are ready to start school! Thank you!

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Church on the move--

God is blessing our little church!. 

Just this past week, two women stopped by our house to visit. Our Bible and daily devotional book were laying on our table. After talking just a little while, one of the women told me that she was a Christian. We continued to talk and then she shared that she has been a believer for several years. She first made a decision to follow Christ when she was living in a neighboring city. Now she is married to an unbelieving man who will not allow her to attend church. The friend who came with her is in the same situation.

Please pray for these precious believers and particularly pray for their husbands to allow them to gather and worship with the other believers.

Our student pastor, his wife, and two of their three children are in the village for the summer 

vacation.  While we were away, a pastor friend in a neighboring town contracted with a builder to have a house built for our pastor. The family is now nicely settled into their new home. 
New House

 Our pastor will be leaving the village in November to return to Bible School for his final year. We  are looking forward to next May when he graduates and moves his family permanently to the  village! 


Through gifts from generous friends, we were able to purchase a new motorcycle for our village pastor.  Thank you so much!
New motorcycle

Medical Center

Linda and I have just been back in country for a month and we are so excited about all that the Lord is doing in our village.


The medical center is completely functional!

Vaccination day in the village (new pavillion)

The 'official opening' of the medical center was held on April 12th with visiting officials from the Ministry of Health from Niangoloko, Banfora, Wangolo, and Nonfesso. Most of the village turned out for the celebration and drums and dancing went well into the evening.

The government has sent us 3 nurses with the promise of sending us one more nurse. One of the nurses serves as the chief of staff, one is a midwife, and one is in charge of vaccination campaigns. Each of the nurses take their turn for general medicine consultations.

In our absence, our village contact, Babou, contracted with a builder to have a pavilion built on the hospital property. This will be used for vaccination campaigns, training for the women, and for a place in the shade for family members to rest.
Newborn weighing less than 2 pounds

As of Sept 1st, there have been 137 women give birth in the new maternity center! Women who probably would have given birth at home are coming from as far away as 35 kilometers to have their babies in the hospital!

We made a quick trip to Banfora with two babies in distress. One was a premature twin weighing less than 2 pounds and the other was a newborn with a cleft lip.  

Monday, February 15, 2016

Returning 'home' to Burkina

After spending a few days in Yako, and then a few days in Ouaga, Linda and I took the road
south to our little village of Kimini. Upon arrival we were honored by a visit from the village chief and the leaders of the village.












Part of our first few days in the village were spent in meetings with our village contact, Babou, reviewing the progress that was made on the medical clinic while we were away and also planning our next phase of development.















This little baby girl is named Biba. She weighed just a little under 5 pounds at birth. Her mama is not well and cannot produce milk for her, so we have enrolled Biba in our milk program.











This is a very impressive young girl named Maman. Last year on Jan 1st she suffered some very bad burns on her backside and the back of one of her legs when her skirt caught on fire while she was cooking. Maman missed 6 weeks of school last year, yet finished the school year with a very high mark. Since then, Maman often comes by asking for help with her English studies.









Through a very generous gift from Dawn Malcolm, we were able to equip the Kimini school and the Nonfesso school with sports uniforms for their soccer teams. This is the proud Kimini team in their new uniforms.


Monday, October 12, 2015

The Rainy Season


Burkina Faso has two seasons per year, the rainy season and the dry season. The rains start during the months of May through September and the rest of the year is dry. . . with little to no rain again until May or June.


This year, the rains were really late in starting in the southern region where we live, but towards the end of July, it started raining every 3 or 4 days and now at the end of September, everything is lush and green.


Our Lake
August is generally the month with the most abundant rains. The fields have all been planted and the farmers are fertilizing, spraying to kill the bugs, and waiting with anticipation for the October harvest.


There are a couple of places along the road to Kimini where the land is flat and there are no places for the abundant rains to drain away.


We call this place in the road, 'our lake', and we are thankful each time that we go up and down this road, that we get safely through. Our truck is sturdy and strong and with 4-wheel drive, we plow right through the water and the mud!


Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Signing of contracts--

This past month has been filled with fun activities in Kimini!


On August 23rd, we met with a new local contractor and signed papers to begin the work on the maternity building of our medical center.


The contractor and his team are located in Banfora, about 100 kilometers from our village. At the signing, we made the first payment in the agreed upon contract and on Aug 25th, the masons and a team of manual laborers arrived in Kimini, ready to begin the work.



The very first steps are to make the concrete bricks on-site, clear the land, and identify the placement of the building. These steps were all started last week and already, we can see the foundation being laid for the maternity building.

Making Bricks
We praise God for his provisions for the building of a medical center in Kimini! Please pray with us that the people of Kimini will come to see that our God is a kind and loving God and that He loves the people of Kimini very much!

Laying the foundation