Friday, November 11, 2016

Catching up

Greetings to you all from a wet, soggy House of Hope.  Almost since the hurricane went through, there has been constant storms and rain showers go through our area of Haiti.  While for us it has been mostly annoying dealing with constant damp and muddy conditions, for many others it has caused flooding and destruction of property and more loss of life.  
 Nannie trying to stay dry on her way to school during the rain.
As a result of one of these storms, we lost one of the lovely trees in our yard.  We are very grateful that it fell in a direction that was away from our buildings and didn't cause a lot damage, but we did have to cut the rest of it down.  It took a couple of days work to get it all cut up and moved off our yard.  Thankfully, we were able to make charcoal out of it and will be able to use it for cooking for a while.

The boys working on clearing out the fallen tree

Another project the kids and Linda have been working on is updating our kitchen.  We were blessed by a gift from a partner, who visited us last year, to be used to update the kitchen.  This project includes getting new propane cooking burners...
And new tiles on the floor and part of the walls...

and paint on the walls...

We still have to find and purchase stainless steel counters and tables to be used for food prep and the kitchen project will be finished.  This is something we've wanted to do for a really long time and we are so thankful to the people who put money towards us accomplishing this project.

As you can imagine, there are so many logistical details that go into running a ministry like the House of Hope and we cherish each and every supporter that helps us in many different ways.  After many days of waiting for the rain to slow down so the boat could be unloaded we finally were able to receive a shipment of food to fill up our pantry...
These food shipments come to us from our friends in Miami and are such a blessing to us.  Lately, they have had trouble raising enough funds to send in full shipments of food, so we make do with what they are able to send and purchase the rest ourselves in Haiti.  If anyone would be interested in directly helping them supply this food shipment for us, we could link you with their organization to help in this area. 

This food shipment came in just in time to help us receive a few new children into our home.  The first of these children is a young girl named Chanika.  She has Tuberculosis in her stomach and will need care at the House of Hope for at least the next 9 months to a year to receive treatment and become healthy again...

Several young children have come with severe malnutrition and skin infections.  These children remain at the House of Hope along with a family member who helps us care for them.  They will only stay a few weeks, up to a month until the child is healthy again.  We have a constant rotation of these small children in our home.  

Another important addition this past week is 4 month old John Kerry (it is a boy, in spite of the pink outfit!)...

The reason John Kerry's admittance to the House of Hope is so important is because of his parents.  Both of his parents are significantly intellectually challenged.  There is very little if any help for people with these disabilities in our area of Haiti and John's mom knows nothing of taking care of a small baby.  We are happy to be able to provide them with a safe place to stay while Linda and our staff take time to show and teach her how to care for her child.  
We love being able to provide hope in all of it's forms for those in need around us. Thank you so much for your part in helping us do this.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Some News

Greetings to you all from the House of Hope.  Linda and the kids asked me to thank you specifically for your prayers for us over the past few weeks.  They are all doing well, the kids are in school and life seems pretty much back to normal.  The only fallout for us from the big hurricane that went through has been receiving more children into our home.  We've already received about half a dozen from the affected areas out west of us and we anticipate that going up even further in the next few weeks.  

Thank you too for your prayers as I traveled out to see some of our partners out in Western Canada.  We made it there and back safely in spite of having to drive through a pretty bad storm and counting semi-trailers stuck in the ditch part of the way along.  It was a bit of stressful driving -- but we made it and had a great time with our friends out there.  

An exciting story that came out of this trip is that while speaking at our partnering church in Banff on Sunday morning I shared the story of Lyse and our desire to find someone who could help us with her case.  Banff is a tourist town and they often have visitors from all over the world in their church services.   In the service that morning was a family from another area of Canada  They had family visiting from Brazil and they brought them to see this beautiful area of Canada.   So, turns out the father of the family just happens to be a pediatric doctor in a children's hospital here in Canada!  He offered to do what he could to help us with Lyse's case.  He has all her information and is seeking some answers with the other doctors in their hospital.  We are so grateful that our Heavenly Father cares so much about each of us that he coordinated all these events so that we would cross paths!  Keep praying for wisdom for the doctors and that we could get some definitive answers for Lyse.

On the same note of exciting news, we are so grateful for everyone who has sent in extra financial support for us over these past few weeks.  We have been able to make 2 significant payments on what we owe to the hospital and while we still have some debt left, we are feeling much better about it than before and are hopeful that the rest will come in as this year is coming to an end.  Our next prayer request would then be that we would be able to get some more partners to support us on a monthly basis so we don't go back into debt to them in the future.

 We have some prayer requests to share with you for the days and weeks ahead:
  • Linda had a fall last night and injured her foot.  She had x-rays today and the doctor said it wasn't broken, but it is swollen and painful.  Please pray for quick and total healing for her.
  • There is a medical team visiting our partnering hospital this week and another one heading there next week.  The team that is currently there will be doing skin grafts on one of our little girls at the House of Hope this coming Friday.  Five year old Neisha has been in our home for a little over a month now and she came with significant burns across her stomach.  We are grateful that this team has the tools and skills to do these grafts for her, and we ask you to pray for them as they do the work and for Neisha that she would heal nicely and that this would really help her.
A big thank you to everyone who has given and prayed for us -- you are such a blessing to us!

Wednesday, October 05, 2016

An Update

Good Morning Everyone.  First of all, very sorry I didn't get to write an update yesterday, I was not home all day.  I did keep in touch with Linda and the kids throughout the past couple of days to make sure all was OK. They are doing fine.  

We are located on the North coast of Haiti, so not in the area where the hurricane hit directly and where it seems there is much more damage.  I haven't heard anything about if there is damage in our general area, but I do know the HOH and all our kids are safe.  The had lots of wind and rain through the day yesterday; what scared them the most was how dark it got throughout the day.  Now it is calm but still raining off and on.  

Thank you so much for your prayers on their behalf, and please continue to pray for Haiti and those who now have to start cleaning up and helping those most affected. 

I'll update when I can, but I am heading out on a road trip today to visit with a supporting church in Alberta, Canada, to visit family and to attend the funeral of a friend of ours who passed away suddenly this past week.  While the HOH is dealing with rain, I'm preparing to drive through our first snow storm of the season!  So, I could use your prayers as well.

Thanks so much for all the messages of concern and assurances of your prayers.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Thank you!

We appreciate the response we've had from you our supporters to our call for help.  We have had numerous donations made, as well as some promises of help and continued prayers for which we are so thankful.  We will be able to make a payment on our debt and hopefully continue to pay off more in the months to come.  Please continue to keep our projects in your prayers.

Before I give you a bit more of an update on my trip down to Haiti -- which I promised but haven't had a chance to do yet -- I wanted to give you a bit of an update on our "grand" babies.  Fafane and Jeremiah are doing really well.  Unfortunately Fafane's father-in-law passed away last week, so with the rejoicing of a new baby in the family came a time of mourning the passing of the child's grandfather.  You could keep that family in your prayers as well.

Lyse continues to hang in there.  She continues to have her blood count monitored and receives transfusions as necessary.  We heard back from one set of doctors in Miami that they were not able to help us with her case at this time.  We are not sure if that means, nothing can be done to help her, or that they are just not able to get involved in her case.  Our friends in Miami are still checking into this, so we remain hopeful and ask for your continued prayers for her as well.

Now, for some more pictures from my trip down to the HOH... VBS (we call it camp in Haiti) as always was a special time for all of us.  We had the 60 HOH kids there and before we knew it, they were joined by about 100 of their friends and fellow students from our local community.  We were glad to have them come, but it did get a bit crowded and chaotic as we just don't have enough space for that many people.  But everyone just moved over a little bit and it really was a great time to be together and studying God's Word and how it applies to our lives today.   The theme this year was Jesus makes me a 10 out of 10.  Here are some pictures...

The three different "teams" sitting in the shade during lesson times.

This team used construction paper to make hats for their team members one day.
 This team shows off their handy work after taking part in the craft session.
 Games are always a fun time -- this is a rousing game of dodge ball
Not even the pouring rain could squelch the enthusiasm during a balloon popping game.
Unfortunately, the T-shirts didn't arrive until after camp was over and we all went home, so we weren't able to get a picture of everyone in their shirts, but this is a group of them.
The girls show off their theme based shirts.
But, as with all things -- summer holidays has come to an end, and now the kids are into the school year.  This is the first year for Kateleen and Davidson... They were excited on their first day.
Here are some others on their way...

And here is a picture of the two girls who were adopted by the Haitian family in Port-au-Prince as they head off for their start in school as well...
Once again, we thank you for the part you play in changing the lives and futures of these precious ones in our care.  We appreciate your continued prayers and support in whatever way you are able to help us out.  We hope you all have a great week... until next time....

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

We need your help...

When you are involved in a work such as the House of Hope there are several things that become very clear as time goes by.  Two of these things stood out for us these past couple of weeks.  First of all, we are more convinced than ever of the necessity of the work we are doing.  Just this past week two sets of twin boys have come to our home extremely malnourished.  These and every new story of lives being changed brings new excitement and understanding that what we are doing is the most important thing for us.

The second thing that has stood out for us is how dependent we are on others to accomplish this ministry.   We are totally dependent on God to provide everything we need to love, care and provide hope for these children.  But we are also dependent on our partners to help us out in the ways that they can.  

We have come to a place where we are really in need of your help at this moment.  We have mentioned the financial struggle we have had off and on for the past couple of year.  We are so grateful for everyone one of you who has been a part of the House of Hope family over the years; whether it is through giving of your time or resources, or your encouragement and prayers.  

The past couple of weeks have been tough as we are receiving more and more pressure to pay off the debt that we have to our local hospital.  It is a debt that has been around for a long time and no matter how hard we have worked to reduce it, we haven't been able to as more expenses continue to be added to it.  We have mentioned it as a need in our latest newsletter that you will see below, but since writing the letter it has become an even bigger need as the pressure to pay it off has become more intense.  

We realize not everyone is able to help us in a financial way.  But if you are, would you please consider helping us with this need by sending a gift to one of the organizations listed on our page?  If you cannot help in that way, could you please pray with us that our God who has provided for us so faithfully in the past would do so again in this moment of need?  Either way you can help, we are thrilled to have you partner with us in this exciting ministry.   We hope you are encouraged as you read our latest news in this link below...

   Sept 2016

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Welcome Baby Jeremiah!!

A new addition to the HOH family arrived this evening with the birth of Jeremiah Liam Justin.  He weighed in a 3.7 kg, just over 8 pounds -- a big baby for us -- we are used to the under 4 pound crowd!  
Both baby and mother are doing great.  By this evening the doctor had given Fafane one hour to give birth or he was going to have to do a C-section... we are thankful everything went well.

Thank you so much for your prayers together with us.  We are excited to have another "grand" baby in our family.  And he has many "moms", and "dads" waiting to show him lots of love.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Prayer needed

Good Evening, we hope this blog post finds you all doing well in your respective areas of life.  I know I promised you more stories of my latest travels to the HOH and the goings on there -- and I will be posting more about that.  But for the moment, we have an important prayer request we wanted to share with you.

You might remember last summer when I went to Haiti I attended a wedding of one of our girls, Estephanie (Fafane).  She is expecting their first child and has been having some issues since last month.  She is 8 months along and has started to have contractions.  While we are thankful that she was able to hang on a bit longer than when the troubles started at 7 months, we would like the baby to stay in just a bit longer!  The doctors have admitted her to the hospital and she is on bed rest.   They are watching her blood pressure closely and we are just waiting to see what will happen.

Please pray for Fafane, her husband Ronald, Linda and the medical staff giving her care.  You can see Fafane and Ronald here in this picture (along with our boy Mits).  

On the same praying note, continue to pray for Lyse.  The doctor in Miami has the medical report now, and we are just waiting to hear from him if anything can be done to help her out.

We appreciate your prayers on our behalf very much.  We are very blessed!  Thank you for your part.