Monday, June 29, 2015

God's Little Angels Ministry

Edwin and I have always talked about raising a next generation of Christian leaders with Biblical love in a family style environment.  To date, we have taken the most vulnerable of these children, provided them with Agape love and seen the amazing results.  Did you know that Uganda has the largest orphan population per capita of any country in the world?  It does and there are many wonderful organizations around the world trying to help these kids find their way.

When we make a decision to take another new child into our home, we have a family meeting on Skype.  We include the children and by doing so, they feel valuable and are excited to help that new child feel welcome.  I don't know how to say this exactly...we are not exactly like an orphanage...we are more like a loving home.

God commands us to protect and care for orphans and widows.  This is what Edwin and I are teaching the children.  Each chance they get, they go into a community with him providing food, mosquito nets to both AIDS women and to the children.  They are making special trips into the community to pray over the sick and most importantly, they are showing the Jesus video to many in our grass hut.  Did you also know that more than half the children under 5 years old have the malaria parasite present in their blood?  Across the country, anywhere from 25,000 children under 5 years old die of malaria annually according to Doctors without Borders.  All it takes is a $5.00 mosquito net.

We are focusing on our God's Little Angel's Ministry in this blog.  They asked us a year ago if they could do this ministry and we doubted they could accomplish it.  Boy....were we wrong.  Here are some pictures of them in the community doing God's work.  We are so very proud of them.





Maureen and Yasin give HIV/AIDS women mosquito nets.








I'm not sure who is more happy....the kids
or the widows.







These women are our neighbours.  They are afflicted with HIV/AIDS and we want to make sure they are getting enough protein.  For Maureen and Yasin, even at their young ages, to help them was very important to them.  They know that eggs is a high source of protein.




This picture is very special to me personally.  Our girls and Joseph found a woman named Rosemary to help.  She is very weak with AIDS and they wanted her to get protein like they are getting.  They also brought her some sugar and a mosquito net.  This is what it is all about....this and the picture below say it all.



They not only gave Rosemary a mosquito net, sugar and eggs, they prayed over her.  Her 7-year-old
grandson behind watches on.  He is the provider of all food as his grandma Rosemary is too weak.  We will be back here in the future to help both of them.




Edwin bought 50 mosquito nets with his wages.  As many times as we tell him to save his money, he feels God wants him to provide for the orphans and widows.  He is trying to teach the younger ones how important it is to follow God's word.  Each time they go out, they are very excited and want to know when they can do it again.



This is another village up north where the people are sick and very poor.  The Moms were so happy to see their children receive a mosquito net as they could never afford one.  




Our kids giving out mosquito nets to children less fortunate



 Shaban might not have functioning legs due to polio but that doesn't stop him.  He is with the kids every day cutting grass to feed their goats on our farm compound.






We will be building a structure for the kids goats soon.  Each child will have a goat to take care of and will learn about responsibility.  They realize also that if needed, they will have to give their goat up for food but they will do this when the time is right.  So far we have 6 goats with 2 mamas pregnant with 2 kids each.  Total soon will be 10.




The passion fruit are recovering after the draught and will be picked at the end of July.  This again will be given to our kids and the poor in our area.  So far there are 1000's of them hanging.






Remember "Faithful" the cow?  We are so blessed to have Laury and Tom in our lives to have provided the sale of Faithful to put in our well for water.  Not only have they provided water for our children and compound, they have provided water for the community.  4 years later and after testing again, we are still pumping 5000 litres/hour.  This is our neighbour girl that brings water to her family when she can.





We may be suffering from extreme heat on the westcoast of Canada but isn't it ironic how across the world suffers from extreme rains.  God is in full control and we must work with whatever He provides.  Whether rain or shine, the kids are doing what they feel they must do. Edwin and I are
so proud of all of them and cannot wait until we can bring more children into our Home of Angels.
We are waiting for just a short time due to the elections.  We will let you know when the next children arrive.  If anyone would like to sponsor a child, let me know and I will share the details with you.

We would also like to thank all the people who supported us in the past month to continue building and making a healthy home for the children.  Thanks for the new latrine and septic tank provided by
"John".   We would also like to let Thomas know that we are up to 78 healthy goat in Malindi village.  As soon as Edwin and David can get though the muddy roads, he will be getting pictures for you.  Thank you once again for your kind heart to provide these goats to us and also to everyone else who sponsored children and took it upon themselves to help us.











Sunday, May 31, 2015

Support an Angel...Provide them Wings

Since the beginning in 2010, people have asked me "What do you need next?"  These past years we have been so blessed to receive the items needed to almost complete our Home of Angels.
God provides....and that is a fact.  The farm compound accommodates the chickens, goats and gardens.  The main compound consists of enough housing for 50 children that we plan to raise and educate.

But here is where we really need your prayers.  The 2nd home that Northview so kindly donated funds for is finished and sitting empty until we find sponsors.  We are equipped to house up to 50 children but until we find sponsors for each child, we cannot bring them in.  Edwin and I would like to find children and have a waiting list like other organizations do, but the reality is, we must mention it to the child and if no one sponsors them, once again they are rejected.  We can't do that.

Needless to say, we did make an exception.  Currently we have 14 children who are sponsored and we have 15 children living with us.  Our latest little girl named Bridget is 6 years old.  She is very malnourished and we felt it in our hearts to bring her in immediately.  If anyone would like to sponsor this sweet child, you can reach me at jaajabarbshomeofangels@gmail.com and I will give you the details.


                     

Meet Bridget our new little princess.  She loves to make a crowns of flowers for her head to look pretty.  If anyone would like to sponsor her, please contact me and I will send you the information.
Thank you.   





Our cookhouse is looking much better with a special coat of weather protector paint on it.  The shelves and counters are finished inside and all that's left is painting the windows and door.  As you can see, it's very difficult to hide this red dirt on everything.





Meet our Home of Angels family.  In the front row we have our newest children with the exception of  Alan in the blue.  I want to also tell you that that avocado tree behind them is my 65th birthday present planted by the boys.




I am so happy to share this news with you all.  For some reason as soon as the construction was completed, my baking banana bread skills fell apart.  We always said "buy a loaf for a brick".  10,000 loaves later and construction completed, I struggled to bake this bread.  I believe that God was sending me a message telling me enough is enough.  The next thing I knew, Willy at Cobs bakery was offering to help me with these big fundraisers in the future.  For me to bake 4 at a time, sometimes baking 32 in the day took me all day.  Cobs ovens can bake 50 at a time in one hour.  Thank you so much Willy to consider it your ministry to help us and also, thank you Save on Foods for continuing to supply all the ingredients.  





Your wondering about the bandages on Alan and Bridget's hands?  They are cannulas
where you put the needle in to administer medicine into the body.  Both these kids have
malaria but you would never know it.  Once caught and meds administered, they are
usually OK.




Edwin managed to get a picture as the kids were coming out of the gardens with greens they had picked for meals.  I sure don't remember being this happy doing chores.  Look at little Yasin in the front.  From the mud hut with nothing to having hope and love, he is definitely not the same child.





Zakia received a letter from her sponsor and wanted to show me.  I'd like to share it with you to show you how happy they are receiving mail.  They treasure these letters and read them so much that it can help them to learn English.  Thank you Hannah.




Do you remember when the Gleaners sent 500,000 meals in our container to Uganda?  I wanted to show you all the dedication that goes behind cutting these vegetables.  Andy, on the right is 96 years old and spends most of his week cutting food for the needy.  Jake on the left is like a fixture too, always laughing and making people feel good.  He drives the forklift, emptying the containers of vegetables and making sure we all have enough product to cut.  Last year 11,500,000 servings were prepared and were sent to 18 countries.  Praise God.






I had a surprise this week.  Edwin bought a couple of goats with his pay cheque.  As they multiply rapidly, we currently have 5 with one mama expecting possibly 3 kids.  He has a vision for every child to have a goat so they can learn responsibility by taking care of it.  Good plan Edwin.


On more thing I would like to share with you and that is, we had a surprise today.  Our new friends in the UK sent us a message that the playground they had worked so hard to raise funds for is going to be built on our property very soon.  They came to Uganda last year to meet Edwin and the kids and measure out a piece of property where it would nicely fit.  The children don't know so it will be a very big surprise.

Thank you so much Rachel, Mark and all the people that participated.  You didn't even know us but you chose to make the children at our Home of Angels feel very special.  God bless you all.

play-away.org.uk








Friday, May 8, 2015

From Darkness to Hope

Our little family of "angels" is slowly increasing.  Thanks to Edwin, who goes far and wide to search for each child, we have recently been blessed with him finding two new little girls.  They are from a village in the north and although they come from the same village, they don't speak the same language.  In time, they will learn English and Luganda and probably have more languages under their belts than you and I.

We are so proud of our kids.  Edwin and I believe that if we include the children into the decision making process, it makes them feel that they are important and it gives them self worth.  We always talk it over first, listen to their ideas and make the decision.  When the child arrives, they have then prepared a welcome program and help that child adjust to a different way of living other than in the bush.  It is very frightening for a child to come into a walled compound where they are not allowed to leave except with an adult or their daily walk to school.  In time they adjust, loving the idea that so many people care for them and they don't have to struggle for food and water anymore.

The rains were 2 months late this year and many people lost their crops.  When they finally arrived, they came with a vengeance but our communities power has been affected.  The roads where we live are mud and not travelled as much, which means it's difficult for Edwin to get to places like the village where our goats are.  We presently have 56 goats and Edwin's father is still planting food for the workers as wages for helping him.  To ensure we receive only healthy goats, they are first inspected by a vet.  I am sure we will have pictures in the next update.

I would like to share the pictures we were able to get and I hope you can see how God is at work in our Home of Angels.





I would like you to meet Maureen, age 5.  After one month of searching, Edwin found this
child in a village north of us.  Both parents died and she was placed with the only living relative she had, her grandma.  Because this elderly grandma is very sick and cannot take care of her, she asked Edwin if he would help and he decided yes as there were no other living relatives.





I would also like you to meet Hadeja, age 6.  She too lost both her parents due to HIV/AIDS.  She went to live with Grandma but she too is very ill.  After time observing the situation and asking many questions in the village, Edwin felt this child would not be taken care of at all when the elderly woman passed.  We want children that have no other relatives to take care of them so he spends weeks searching and when satisfied, we will take them.



Thank you Northview Church

Our second children's home is finished except for some electrical installation.  We are so grateful to Northview church for caring enough to help us bring God's children into a safe and loving home.
Our prayer is that one day a team will come and baptize the kids and workers who have become Christians.





When we started in February 2010, these two men were there to help clear the land for building.  They helped their friend Edwin for 3 years without receiving anything but gratitude.  They are now in charge of 1000 chickens and a large passion fruit orchard and receiving a wage.  I cannot even imagine how we could have done it without them.  Sula, on the left has now changed his name to "Paul" as he has become a Christian and given his life to the Lord.






Couldn't resist this picture.  This is our little Alan.  He loves the feel of having his head shaved
and goes into a trance.  Edwin and our guard Frank (behind) shave the kids every few weeks to prevent any fungal diseases.



Our little Marian is giving out surprises to the widow's children on our path.






In our last update, I mentioned about Edwin spending his wages by helping the widows in our area start a business.  One family in Canada wanted to make a difference too, so they sent money to help the widows plant a garden after their gardens all dried up in the drought.  The rains finally arrived soon after receiving these seeds and they now have maize growing for the season.  Thank you Caroline and Warren for caring to help these beautiful people.




Thank you to the women in Creston B.C. for spending their time sewing 50 pillow cases for the children.  What a beautiful gift....we are very grateful to you all.






I have mentioned over the past 5 years about how our AMAZING kids are always wanting to help a less fortunate child.  This is another example of two children who want to make a difference to other kids who have nothing.  Hannah and Caleb gave up their allowance and also worked for charity, donating it all to our Home of Angels.  Edwin and I are so proud of you both.  Thank you so much.



I wanted to share what our gardens look like after all the rains.  Our passion fruit are thriving and will be ready in the near future.  And also, the kids are getting healthy greens daily to improve their health.  This is just a tiny part of the garden and look how it's thriving.



We know we are so blessed with all the wonderful things happening in our compounds and in our community.  As the rains ease, the people will be coming back into our grass hut to watch the Jesus video and the kids will be able to get out and help people like they had planned.  The sun and heat will reappear and it will be much easier to get around.  I'm excited to show you the goat project next update but in the meantime, thanks for standing with us and caring.

God bless you all....






Tuesday, March 24, 2015

God's Fingerprints

I believe that we are all God's fingerprints...every one of us.  It makes me smile when I think of His 12 little fingerprints that already live in our Home of Angels.  With Edwin and the staff, there are many more, but let's just speak about our little ones for now.  Every one of our kids has a story to tell.  Some are worse than others but no matter what the difference is, they would never have had the chance if God had not chosen them to live in a controlled environment with a family at their side.

We recently took in Ivan...a little boy from the north that spoke neither English or Luganda.  A child that had Kwashiorkor (lack of protein), or our most recent child, Yasin, a 4-year old that has never seen anything but a mud hut and jiggers.  Look what God has given us....children with no hope and we were chosen to give them a life of structure and love.  We feel so blessed.

We are presently looking for 2 more children.  The 2nd children's home is almost completed and we will soon be able to house another 35+ kids, taking only 2 at a time.  The reason being, the kids we are looking for have suffered with either sickness or no adult in their life.  We will need to nurture them back to health and ingrain trust into them, so 2 at a time is as fast as we choose to go.  The children in our Home of Angels currently are excited to help these new ones to gradually fit into this pattern of living.  That is their past and they understand better than anyone how they have suffered.

I want to acknowledge the children in our country as well.   We have these amazing kids that want to make a difference.  From ages 1 to 5 years at a pre-kindergarten up to kids in their teens wanting to help change a life and when given the opportunity to help, they give it everything they have.  See below what these kids have done to help change our broken world.  We need to acknowledge them in a very big way, because they too see the pain and suffering of other children around the world.  The only difference is, they need an adult to guide them.

Below are pictures that demonstrate how people are helping children, widows and the elderly.  I hope you enjoy them.




There is never enough thanks to Northview Church for helping us to complete our 2nd children's home.  If we can find sponsors for the next 35+ children, we will then be able to house them and take care of all their needs.  Yes, the grass looks like it is dying, and it is.  The rainy season usually starts in February but this year it didn't arrive.  All vegetation is slowing dying.




Meet our newest child Yasin.   Yasin has lived with his 98 year old grandpa most of his life.   All they have is a mud hut and a board to sleep on.  We have now removed him to come and live with us as his Grandpa's health is failing quickly and he will need a good home to survive.  This is what I mean by "God's fingerprints".  Yes, he is a boy...Grandpa never could find clothes for him so all he has is a ripped girls skirt to wear.




Aunty Aidha is at it again....pulling jiggers out of the new children's feet.  Yasin was supposed to come for only a visit but after Aunty pulled out 24 jiggers, he couldn't put shoes on through the pain.  If he had gone back into the mud hut, more jiggers would have entered into the wounds so we made a bed for him and he stayed.  Little Alan, also 4 years old, shared his legos with him so that when the kids were in school, he would have something to play with.  




Our chickens are laying enough eggs daily that we can share them with the community, hospitals and places like Serving His Children.  Ivan's life was basically saved at this wonderful home.  Renee and her team take malnourished children from the villages, teach the caregiver how to feed the child and also teach about nutrition.  Ivan was here 3 times, but this time, no one wanted him back home and she asked if we would take him to live with us.  The answer was immediately yes.  Ivan always wanted to go back for a visit but the idea of taking 120 eggs as a gift made him feel so special.  He was now giving back.




Edwin took Alan and Ivan to the elderly/mentally challenged home where they had a chance to give the people their first eggs in years.




Academics Pre-Kindergarten called and asked if I would come down and speak to kids ages 1 to 5 years.  I figured this Grandma could get down to their level and show them how other kids lived in this world.  I did and after that, they wanted to have a bottle drive.  They raised $182.50 in bottles and called me to present the cheque.  They were so proud.



 MEI school in Abbotsford agreed to host another Mother/Daughter,
Grandma/Granddaughter sewing event.  This evening was to
sew pillow case dresses for our Home of Angels girls and
the many community children that don't have a nice dress.
Thanks Christina and Kim for creating this event.  Everyone
had so much fun, especially the kids....


Kaelin and Courtney really loving this.....

Almost finished






Remember our little Nathan that passed away from AIDS?  His mother and brother were suddenly told they had to move.  Mutesi does not have too much longer with us, but to be sick and have no home was unthinkable to Edwin and I.  We both put together our money and were able to help her put up her own mud hut.  Thanks to some friends, she was not alone doing this.  Edwin found someone in the area that allowed her to use a corner of their land so all that she need to do is mix the mud.



She will have 2 rooms when she is finished




Thank you Marlaina for helping Mutesi.  Edwin bought her soap, rice, poncho and beans with your donation.  



We have a new classroom. We made the old room into another boy's bedroom but this one
is much bigger, a fresh coat of paint and more light.  Edwin is having a discussion with the kids as to what each child is struggling with in school.  I will then plan lessons together with the books they use, to help them at home.  Internet is wonderful when it comes to this.  Thanks again Nina for all the things you donated for this room.  Bookshelves are presently being built along with more tables.



We will have an update on the next blog regarding the goats.  Edwin has been so busy trying to put everything together at the home that he and David haven't had a chance to go to the village and take pictures for the blog.  As for now we have close to 50 goats that have cleared the vet's inspection and are rapidly growing.

Thanks again everyone for helping us.  It looks like we are so close to the end but we still need to find donations for operating costs and sponsors for the kids.  Please contact me if you find it in your hearts to help us to help the children.

God bless all of you



















Saturday, February 14, 2015

Gentle Witness

For the past two weeks I struggled to find the words for this blog.  I want to express why Edwin and I have committed ourselves in making a difference in the lives of orphans, widows and the poor.  It is very obvious that God is leading this journey.  Edwin, a young man who had little and an old lady (according to my Pastor) that just knew she was being called to Uganda but didn't know how to make it all happen.  We soon learned that by relying on Him for everything, miracles started happening.

God blessed me with this "Gentle Witness" named Edwin.  We had the same dream….helping the poor.  We struggled but never felt defeated and have never looked back.  I couldn't raise enough money to pay both construction and wages so Edwin, just one year ago received his first shillings.

Little did I know until my most recent trip, that his wages were being used to bring people out of poverty, not for himself.  He spent months looking for young kids to send to school.  He paid their school fees and bought their books, but the rule was…they had to repay him.  Most of these kids live with their grandmothers and finding food was always a struggle.  Edwin set the kids up in small businesses and today they are all going to school, have food and they are able to save for necessities.  The same happened to the woman who came to us at Christmas begging for food.  We had enough food for 100 kids but wouldn't you know….it seems we had enough to feed over 180.  One month later he found this same woman and her family, helped the older children go to school and set her up in a business to sell cassava chips on the street.  All money was repaid.  Another case… a grandmother that has many of her grandchildren living with her.  He set her up to sell porridge in the mornings on the street and she now can feed everyone daily.  Who knows how many others he helped, but the moral to my story is….Edwin does this for God only…he doesn't speak about it, he just does it quietly.  A very "Gentle Witness" and I can proudly say that he is my grandson in Africa.  Aren't we all just different shades of brown?

We are all so proud of you Edwin for your dedication and honesty.  You are setting an example.






This lady came to us at Christmas and asked if we had any food left to feed her.  She was so weak.  This is the lady that Edwin later helped.




I taught the girls to make banana bread and Mariam with the huge proud smile had taken some
to an elderly lady who is almost blind and alone.  The kids watch over her to make sure she is OK.




Thanks to Northview church, we have started to complete our 2nd children's home.  





Edwin has become a role model for raising chickens in our community.  I think he studied every book
written in Uganda and also had very good instruction from Canada.  Thanks Dan




Junior, Saika and Joseph sort the eggs daily when they are not in school.  The small and cracked ones go to our neighbours, while the better ones are being taken to places like the children's hospital as a donation. We are also helping the old people in our community and of course our children get eggs regularly.  Our main goal is to help the suffering and this kind of protein over there is a dream come true to those who can't afford it.




This is the beginning of our of passion fruit.  The poles are up and the plants are thriving but to utilize all the land, kale has been planted below as it's another source of protein for the kids.




Sula and James hard at work putting in all the top poles




Each passion fruit vine will hold approximately 100 fruit.  The juice from this plant is so healing for a sick child.  You can also see the kale has been picked below and probably inhaled with their normal diet of rice, pocho and beans.  Greens are a real treat for them.


































The fence is up for the goats.  Edwin's father and the villagers completed 7 acres of fencing to raise these goats.  The pay was in the form of food instead of wages.  Everyone is happy and proud of a job well done.  We owe this goat project to our wonderful friends in Hong Kong. 




OH my goodness, I miss these two.  They have become such best buddies.
Alan in the red with our newest child, Ivan





This was a very tearful event but you would never know it.  I left 30 minutes after the kids sang my farewell songs.  I don't know who cried harder.


Thank you everyone for helping us to make this Home of Angels a place where the "Angels" find so much hope and love.  Some of these kids were so sick when they came to us, but now you can see how healthy they have become with such happiness on their faces.  You all helped to make it happen and we are grateful.  Currently, the 2nd home is being completed and this will allow approximately 35+ more children.  The kids won't come all at once but according to the level of trauma and sickness.  We must also find sponsors for them.  If any of you would like to sponsor a child in the future and help him/her to become one of our "Angels", please email me and I will send you the information.