Looking for something to inspire you this winter? Here are six relevant books you don’t want to miss in 2016.
Three-year-old Annie* barely escaped the building that crumbled around her during the catastrophic January 12, 2010, Haiti earthquake. Her mother was not so lucky. She did not survive. Tremors continued for days. Buildings continued to fall and the death toll continued to rise. But even after the shaking stopped, Annie’s life remained on unstable ground. In a country in ruins, she was alone.
There were so many little girls like Annie who lost their parents in the enormous earthquake that she was simply herded with countless other children into the slums. She was given food when she begged hard enough. But she mostly went unnoticed.
There is so much to look forward to at the start of a New Year. Fresh starts, new opportunities, trips to plan, goals to reach and the potential of so many amazing things as you look at the days ahead. Have you also considered what you could do to change a vulnerable child’s life this year?
2015 has been an incredible year and we praise God for the incredible growth in the children we serve and the new initiatives developed that continue to change lives. Here are a few of the highlights:
Our child development staff has been hard at work creating new initiatives for our Home of Hope children. They have started regular day seminars that cover a range of age-appropriate topics and are working on an individual basis with our children to ensure they are receiving the educational and emotional support they need. In addition, they have created a rotating library to be shared between families and are brainstorming new projects for 2016!
This year has been a huge step forward for a small Ethiopian business (Moriya) that now employs 11 women. They were living in complete desperation – doing whatever it took just to survive and support their children. They are now empowered to work with dignity and have hope for their family’s future. In 2015, the business expanded its online presence, inventory is now sold through many new channels and the product offering has expanded in both quality and variety! Check out the online store here.
2015 has been full of some incredible events across the U.S. From orphan care conferences to moving presentations from Stephanie Fast, benefit auctions, gospel sings and much more – it’s been a busy year. We are grateful for the opportunities to represent the voice of the most vulnerable with churches, groups and individuals across the country.
In 2015, the Welsh campus was expanded to include a two-story church and school for Home of Hope families, their children and those in the surrounding community. Construction is finishing up, and the students are excited to be in the building very soon!
LSM continues to work with families interested in pursuing adoption. Although the international adoption scene is changing dramatically, we are still providing information, support and guidance for couples and individuals interested in learning more about their options. We are also providing resources for those considering adoption through the foster care system. You can learn more here.
None of these initiatives could have happened without you and your support. Together, our efforts are creating long-term change in the lives of vulnerable children around the world. We look forward to what God has in store for 2016!
This week, a small work team is spending time in Welsh, Haiti. They are putting the finishing touches on a new school for two of our Homes of Hope in the area as well as the surrounding community. They are working hard to wire the campus for solar power and are making great progress! Not only that, but the team’s expertise as electricians is being passed on to our Haitian staff and several of our Home of Hope boys in the process!
Have you ever read O. Henry’s The Gift of the Magi? The young starring couple, Mr. and Mrs. James Dillingham Young (or Jim and Della) want to give each other a special gift for Christmas, but they can’t afford anything worthy of the other. They sell their most prized possessions to buy their spouse something that will go perfect with… the others’ most prized possession. In the end, the narrator relates it back to the precious gifts of the wise men found in the Gospels.
Timmy* is five years old and started kindergarten this year. The first day, he was so excited. He got his little uniform on, lovingly took his new notebook and pencils out of his backpack, just to gaze at them for a moment before tucking them securely back inside and hoisting the bag onto his back. He fairly jumped out of his skin he was so excited that morning!
All day, he and his new friends in class would learn and listen and soak in the lessons. And every day after school, his mom was there to pick him up and listen to the new fidel (Ethiopian Amharic script) he had learned. Timmy sometimes wondered why his mom almost seemed to be crying behind those big smiles of hers… why would she be sad that he was learning so many wonderful new things!
As Home of Hope kids are growing up, the LSM staff in Haiti is working to provide opportunities for the kids to learn new skills along the way. One of their newest projects at the homes is gardening.
Families are given a start-up set which includes gardening tools, supplies and seeds to help the family construct a raised block bed for a variety of vegetables and plants.
Pierre*–once an abandoned and abused child in Haiti –is the bright and thriving young man he is now because someone like you embraced the opportunity to change his life.