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Sunday, November 16, 2014

Gearing Up for Christmas


Hello friends,

I hope you are doing fine on this blessed Sunday. It has been awhile since I've posted. I've been feeling very tired this week so have been trying to get as much rest as possible.

Yesterday was the day of our civic elections and voting was very brisk. I went out to cast my vote  just a few hours before the voting stations closed. I overheard a number of the workers telling voters that the turn out for voting was very good and that there had been long line-ups much of the day.Later, on the news I heard the same report about long line-ups at many other voting stations. So that is the good news.

I cast my vote for mayor, city council, school trustees and the parks board. We were also asked to vote "yes" or "no" to a variety of big spending schemes. I didn't get the results I wanted but that is okay. I am just glad that so many turned out to vote.  We will see where we are at in 4 years time and in the meantime, I hope our city gets the kind of leadership and vision that we need and deserve.

Weather here has turned very nippy. Last night as I went out to vote at the station a few blocks from where I live, I ran into my neighbour who was coming back from work. She said it was very cold. As I got out and started walking I could see that the ground was covered in a lot of frost. We had frost earlier in the week but it has gotten even colder. I was properly dressed with scarf, gloves and warm jacket.

A few posts ago I said I would share some old videos I had made and so today I'm sharing one I made years ago.

It is just a very short clip of street boys near Kericho, Kenya at a Rehabilitation Center. These are young boys that get into trouble and most have no parents. My friend Jonah worked with them a lot over the years and would bring Vacation Bible School (VBS) to the children.

I would sponsor the event and helped pay the teachers who Jonah would recruit from the local Bible school and make sure they had food to eat for the week of the VSB as well as teaching materials and small gifts for the children to be handed out during the closing ceremonies. On the day in the video, I had made a trip to Kenya while the VSB was being held and I was attending the closing. I was so touched by these children and their heartfelt singing.  My short clip was taken on my digital camera in the days when the pixels were still not that large so forgive the quality.



Christmas is drawing near once again, I would like to do something for the orphans or the community of needy people in and near Kericho, Kenya.

One year I sponsored a small, fun outing for village children to join festivities in town.
 



In another, we took Christmas to the local prisons.

Jonah meeting and greeting one of the prison heads.





Men at the prison gathering.

Women at the prison gathering.

Another year Jonah brought cheer to the local hospital.


In Kenya when you are in hospital, you have to have family help you and make sure they bring you food. Jonah and helpers were taking different food treats to the patients.


For several years we brought Christmas cheer to the internally displaced people of Kenya.


 These are Kenyan who lost their homes and material possessions through civic strife after one of the elections.

These small shelters are how they have to live. There is no protection.

A close up of one of the shelters.

 It is heartbreaking to see the conditions in which the people have to live while they wait for justice. . They have been waiting years for new land where they can live safely. 

No child or grandchild should have to live like this but what choice do the parents have?

Each and every day and every year there are so many ways that one can help the people of Kenya. Christmas is an especially good time to remember them.

I will remember them this year once again and would be so pleased if you could join me.
I can assure you the funds will be put to good use. 

(You can find my email on my profile page if you would like to help out).
God bless. xx

16 comments:

  1. How long until there is peace in the world. For my blessings I will get up every day with a happy face.

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    1. Hi Joanne, it is so important that we ALL get up every day and realize how blessed we truly are. You make a difference in the lives of so many. God bless you for being you. Big hugs. xx

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  2. You helped in a lot of ways, and what harsh conditions so many people live in. Today at church I handed in my Operation Christmas Child shoebox, full of toys and essentials, to be shipped to a remote place overseas. Churches in the USA send a huge number of these boxes, maybe 500,000 a year. Perhaps my gifts will go to Kenya, but definitely to needy people.

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    1. Hello Terra, what a delight to hear from you again. It was wonderful that you could help out with OCC this year. I did it for the first time last night. In 2014, shoe boxes from Canada will be distributed in Uruguay, El Salvador, Guatemala, Sierra Leone, Guinea Bissau, Venezuela, Equatorial Guinea, Costa Rica, Guinea, Haiti, Nicaragua, Chile (including Easter Island), and Senegal.

      I don't know where the shoe boxes from the USA will be sent but wherever they go I KNOW it will be a huge blessing to the child and have life changing impacts. I have been reading and watching videos about how shoe boxes have had such an impact on the lives of individual children and communities. It has been really inspirational. God bless. xx

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  3. Weather is changing here too lots of rain and cold foggy nights. I think your charity work is amazing what you do xxx

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    1. I hear you Mrs. Abbott for it has been really cold here too. But soon the rains will be here again and with it the warmer temperatures. I thank you for your kind words about my charity work. If you can, please say a prayer for the work I am trying to do there in Kenya. Thank you so much in advance if you can do that. I hope you and your little one are bonding well and that you still have a bit of occasion to relax and do more crochet :-)

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  4. Good Morning Joyful, Your work for the people of Kenya is inspirational. You will surely be blessed. Thank you for sharing all the kindness on your blog. John

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    1. Good morning John. Thank you for your kind words! There are so many opportunities to help and share with others, especially at Christmas time and I'm so glad you have a giving heart. After having beautiful sunshine and cold temperatures for awhile now, I see today the clouds are back. It will be raining in another two days or so. I think you will have the same weather. The nice thing is it will be warmer but I will miss the sun :-) Have a great week!

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  5. Thanks for sharing the video and the very interesting photos from Kenya. I love the enthusiasm of the children singing st VBS! I think it is wonderful that you have touched many lives there.
    I participate in a program that supports loans to very small businesses in developing countries. I always choose women to make my loans to because I believe that if the women have an income, they will use it to help their children with food, clothing, and even an education. The program is called Kiva and anyone who is interested can just google that to find out more. I think it is important to be grateful for all that we are given, but even more important to help as we are able. You certainly are a good example of that!

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    1. Hi Cynthia, I'm so glad you enjoyed the video and photos from Kenya. I'm so happy to hear you are a Kiva supporter too as that is a program I have supported for many years. I try to make loans to entrepreneurs in Kenya and I started out by giving loans only to women. These days I do give to the occasional man depending on his business and family situation. In fact while you were sending me a comment I was on the Kiva website, lol! I just heard about Kiva Zip and so may be making my loans that way in future. You can make even small loans under that arm of Kiva. It helps a lender who wants to spread out his/her giving. Blessings to you. xx

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  6. It got cold here too... Unfortunately we hear so much about Ebola from Africa - and not so much about the families in need and the poor conditions so many face daily.

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    1. Oh my! Please stay warm. I read about the cold snap in all 50 states this morning. I hope they are able to keep warm in Hawaii. It is tragic what is going on with Ebola and also with poverty. It is sad too that so many are turning their backs on those that need us most. But I understand the concerns. I hope you are doing well. Thanks for your visit. xx

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  7. Penny, thank you for sharing the wonderful video, and all the great photos of Kenya! Such a blessing you do to help these unfortunate people in need! There are so many people here, as well in the U.S. going hungry, and in need of homes, and this time of the year during the holidays...we are all responsible to take care our own needy and hungry! So many children in this country do not have enough to eat...a real 'shame' to the 'land of plenty'!

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  8. Hi Elizabeth, I'm glad you enjoyed the video and the photos. It is indeed a shame to have people go hungry in the land of plenty. Here in Canada we have many homeless too. Thankfully we have many people who love to help others and make sure there is always food available for distribution on the streets and in kitchens that work with the unfortunate. Sadly these numbers are growing.

    I like to give at home and do. But also abroad where the needs are even greater it seems. But a hungry person is a hungry person and they must be fed. So thank God for those that are willing and able to give. I hope you are keeping warm in Florida as I've heard the cold snap affected you there also. Hugs. xx

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  9. You have a great heart for doing such. What a blessing you are to them. Thank you for sharing a different site of the world. There is much of them from the internet but it's different when you get it first hand from someone you can get to talk with. This post struck me. I like what you're doing, unfortunately I guess I just end up admiring others do that. May God bless you more.

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  10. Lovely to hear from you and to receive your kind comment. Take care and God bless you too!

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