Friday, February 14, 2014

Small steps mean big changes

Reeds of Hope is a small organization.  We do small work in eastern DRC with overwhelming challenges.  We have big dreams though.  Dreams that are intertwined with the hearts of parents facing insurmountable odds.  We support two project, one has been ongoing for four years and one is a new partnership.  Both support children who have been separated from their families because of maternal mortality, death or illness of surviving parents, abandonment, moments of crisis in their family in a place where there is no social safety net beyond local church and community members who are often living in extreme poverty as well. 

After a visit to DRC, I am always left humbled beyond belief at the strength, resilience, and determination of the people I have been honored to spend time with during my brief stays.  I love the recent campaign by Panzi and Channel Initiative named Rise.  They are "changing the narrative of congolese women. From victim to victory."  Check out the link and be encouraged! 

On a recent trip to DRC, I was told by a social worker, "Give money and support to our families, not just to our children. Because when you give money to our families then they can care for our children and eventually they will not need help anymore.  Children will always need your help.  Please, help our families here in Congo have the strength and ability to care for their children."  This is our vision.  Children living with their families. 

Because we are a small organization, we don't have big overhead costs.  We send about $2200 to $2500 to the field every month.  Three times a year we send about $2000 for school fees for 82 children.  We support more and more babies every month that need formula (their mothers have died in birth) and often all our donations are used for the needs of the babies so we are left waiting until we find extra funds for our bigger projects.  Those bigger projects are the ones that will move us forward in our dreams of children in families.  Over the past four years I have learned we can do so much with so little. 

We are excited about this year.  We know God can do big things, even with little resources. 

Thank you for all the support you have given us over the past four years and we look forward to what this year will bring in our work in DRC. 

One of the many little ones we support.  Our dreams mean we want to support her beyond just making sure she has milk to drink and staff to care for her.  Our dreams for her are that she would be reunited with her family and not spend her days in an orphanage, because even if it gives excellent care, is not enough.

For those that are interested in ways to support Reeds of Hope, there is an auction that is happening today which will benefit one of four charities (Reeds of Hope is one of them).  Please consider sharing the link.  It is found here.  Most of all, I feel encouraged by this group of artists who have decided to share and give of their amazing talents to those in need.  Thank you!

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