So it’s been a while since my last post about the amazing children at Kerith and those taking care of them. I will start posting regularly again in order to update you on how these children are doing and about the wonderful ministries taking place at Kerith! For now, I will focus on the children that are in need of sponsors.
For those of you new to the site, and as a reminder to the rest of you, Kerith Children’s Home is home to 20 beautiful, precious children. They are fed, taken care of, emotionally and spiritually poured into, and most importantly, given access to the Gospel of Christ on a daily basis! Samuel and Mercy started the orphanage 6 years ago and faithfully follow God’s call to serve the community around them.
Right now, I call you to consider sponsoring a child! For $40 a month, you can sponsor one of the 16 children of Kerith that currently do not have someone sponsoring them. The money will all go directly to the child, providing them with food, school fees, medical care and health insurance, clothing, and small portions are used for Christmas and birthday presents. While we cannot all be there working beside Samuel and Mercy, we can all cover Kerith with our prayers. Pray for God to continue to touch this ministry with His blessing. Pray that He will bless each child that calls Kerith home. I beseech you to also pray about coming alongside this ministry financially. This can be done by donating money to Kerith or by choosing to sponsor a child. Follow the Harvesters International link on the homepage in order to do this!
Again, I am sorry for my prolonged absence and trust that you have been and will continue to help me as we seek to cover Kerith!
Meet Halima, a beautiful 14 year old girl with a beautiful smile and heart!
Halima has unfortunately been through more than many of us could imagine, even at her young age. Her father died during the war and she and her mother moved to stay with her Aunt and Uncle in hopes to have help meeting their needs. Her Aunt passed away, leaving them with her Uncle. When Halima was 3, her mother went missing, though it was later found out that she had married another soldier. Living with her Uncle, Halima went everywhere that he was deployed and because he felt she was a burden, he tried to kill her twice. After being threatened more than once in her ancestral village after her Uncle took her back, she ran away in attempt to save her own life and was found asleep in a water trench. Thankfully, the probation officer she was taken to knew Kerith Children’s Home and contacted them.
Halima’s story is heart breaking, but praise God that she has recovered from the trauma she faced so early in life and most importantly she has accepted Jesus Christ as her Savior! God’s love and compassion is on display in Halima’s life. She loves to sing and dance. She is friendly, smiles a lot, and is very generous with hugs. In the future, Halima wants to be a nurse and a pastor.
Please join me in praying for Halima as she is in school and living at Kerith. Let’s pray for her future as she follows her dream to take care of others physically and spiritually and praise God for her precious life! Halima’s story is a good reminder to pray for children all over the world who are facing impossible situations.
So I’m taking a break from introducing you to the children that call Kerith home this week to talk about something extremely dear to my heart. I know that I have mentioned in other posts that there has been a lot going on in the last 14 months or so since we left Uganda, however, I really want you to understand how much God is working and how hard those involved with Kerith Children’s Home are working!
While we were there in June of 2013, the children were living on the same compound as Samuel and Mercy’s home as well as Samuel’s office. While they enjoyed having the children so close, they were running out of room very quickly and needed to move the orphanage to it’s own site. They had already decided where to put the Children’s Village and were even using the site to feed the children in the surrounding community every Saturday. We were able to visit the site and even got to help paint part of the outside of the dorm while there.
God had placed in upon Samuel’s heart to move the children to this site when possible however, we were not sure due to time construction takes and fund raising when they would be able to move the children. Well, as you know, the children live in the Children’s Village and have been for a little while now! Samuel recently posted an update picture through Kerith Children’s Home facebook page with a picture that I stole to share with you. When I saw the site that God has granted the children of Kerith to make home and saw how much work as been done, my heart couldn’t contain the joy and excitement!
The picture on the top is a picture of what the dorm looked like not long before we went to Uganda last year while the picture in the middle is what it looks like today! The picture on the bottom shows all the buildings on the compound as well as some of the farm animals: the dorm is on the left, a chapel for the children as well as the community is in the middle, and the medical clinic that is under construction is on the right (look at the progress on that since even the last post about it!)
While I wish very much that I could see the progress in person now, I can’t imagine what all God will have done by the time He opens the door for Ben and I to return. Look what He’s done in just a little over a year!
This week, I want to introduce you to Moses. He is a 10 year old who has hopes of becoming an engineer in the future!
His family was extremely poor and as a result, his mother abandoned them. They depended totally on peasant work in order to make money while Moses moved around neighborhoods in order to find food for them. The small hut they lived in was literally falling apart which let in a lot of water during the rain season. Though his father attempted to care for his son, a combination of alcohol and HIV kept this from being possible. Moses was in bad health when he was brought to Kerith.
Now, Moses is healthy. He does well in both math and science in school and enjoys playing football with his friends. Please pray for Moses to stay healthy, to continue to do well in school, and for his future! Thank God for this precious child that calls Kerith home!
Today, I would like to introduce you to Mary.
Mary is an 11 year old who lives at Kerith Children’s Home. Her birthday was just a few days ago on July 7! Her family consisted of her parents as well as her brothers and sisters. She was unable to go to school because her family was unable to raise the funds in order to send Mary and her siblings. Instead of spending her days in a classroom with other children her age, Mary had to work in gardens chasing birds away from rice in order to help earn money for her family. She slept on a mat with her siblings though they had nothing to cover themselves with.
Today, at Kerith, Mary is fed three times a day and has clothes to wear. In school, she is in grade three and enjoys music and reading story books. Mary wants to become a surgeon in the future.
Please join me in praying for Mary; pray for her now as she lives at Kerith and pray for her future. Praise our heavenly Father for this lovely child, as well as her hopes and dreams!
I have exciting news to share with you about the medical center Samuel and his ministry are building! Several weeks ago, I shared with you that a medical center to serve the children of Kerith as well as the surrounding community is currently under construction. The two main things they want the clinic to focus on will be treating those with malaria as well as helping both mother and child make it safely through child birth. Phase one was completed in the last update and $6000 was needed in order to finish Phase Two, which also finishes the construction of the building. A few weeks ago, a team was able to help with the roofing on the clinic and it is close to being finished! To finish things up, they need $3400. While that is still a lot of money, that’s almost half of what was needed before. Praise God for His provision in this process so far!
I’m extremely excited about the work that has been done on the clinic and would like to show you how much hard work, money, and prayer have been put into this project. The picture on the top is from the previous post about the medical clinic while the picture on the bottom shows the progress that has been made. I hope that you are just as encouraged and excited by the progress of this project as I am!
As we praise God for all that He has provided this ministry with so far, let’s not forget to continue to ask Him for the provision to see the medical clinic finished, open, and providing services in His name to the surrounding community. I urge you to pray about this specifically with me; that God will provide the supplies, the workers, and the finances needed in order to open the center. I also ask you to pray about whether or not God would use you as one of the tools through which He will provide the money needed to complete this project. I am including a link to Harvesters International Ministries in this post in order to make it easier for those who feel called to give financially. Just a reminder that 100% of any money you donate to Kerith through Harvesters will go to Samuel and Mercy, with Harvesters keeping none of it for themselves.
Harvesters International Ministries
I am excited to see what God continues to do at Kerith in the future and thank you for coming alongside me in order to cover Kerith in finances as well as prayer!
Here is the snapshot of the information of the orphanage I promised you last week! In the weeks to come, I will be posting on each one of the children that calls Kerith home in order to give you the chance to meet them, even if it’s via the internet. Each one of these children is precious to our Heavenly Father!
- There are 21 total children that currently call Kerith home.
- 11 of the children are female while 10 are male.
- The age of the children at Kerith ranges from 6 to 14.
- The average age is 9.2 (for our purposes, we’ll say 9)
- All the kids at the orphanage are in school at River of God.
- Each child receives 3 meals every day.
- The children each have clothes to call their own.
- Those who suffer from illness are receiving treatment for it.
My hope is that over the next several months as you get to know these children from a distance through their back stories as well as their current hopes and aspirations that you will be able to see each child as the individual that they are and not just as a number at an orphanage in Uganda.
Join me in praising God for these children and pray for them in their current situations as well as their futures!
Samuel has provided me with a profile for each of the children staying at Kerith so I can introduce you to them and you can get to know them a little better. I’m excited to provide you with some personal information about each one of the 21 precious children that call Kerith home! Next week, I will start with a snapshot of the orphanage before diving into posting about the individual children.
This week however, I want to encourage you to lift up your voice to God with me. As I have read through each one of these children’s stories, my heart has broken with each one while rejoicing that God brought these children to a place like Kerith. These children have each been through hardships that many of us cannot imagine. Within their stories are parents who have abandoned them, parents that have tried very hard to provide for their kids, starvation, malnourishment, young children working to help provide food for their families, HIV/AIDS, illnesses, and other heartbreaking scenarios. These aren’t just stories we read about; each one of these stories represents a child and a family. And there are more stories similar to these that we do not know the specifics of yet. I ask that you join me in praying for the children of Kerith, as well as in praying for the children all over the world, not just in Uganda, that might go to bed hungry tonight, that do not know where their parents are, who long to go to school with the other children, and any other situations that need to be lifted up to God.
On a positive note, I ask you to praise our heavenly Father with me! God has brought each one of the children living at Kerith out of the difficult situations they were in and is providing for them through Samuel’s ministry. The children eat three meals a day, have clothes, go to school, have friends, receive medication and treatment for illnesses and most importantly are exposed to the gospel and love of our risen Savior and Lord! What a powerful and amazing God we serve that he can reach into seemingly hopeless situations and provide for them! The children at Kerith have hopes and dreams. Many of them love to dance and sing and they have favorite subjects in school.
Money is needed to provide for these children and money will be needed to provide for the children that God will bring to Kerith in the future. Please pray with me about partnering with the ministry God is using through Samuel and Mercy through Kerith Children’s Home.
There have been several needs in Samuel and Mercy’s ministry that I have brought to your attention though they have been spread out through several posts. I wanted to compile these needs into one post to help you see the specific areas in which you can help me in covering Kerith.
- To run the orphanage and pay all the bills associated with this, $1400 a month is needed. We all understand the need to pay bills that come up each month. Money given to help Kerith pay bills each month will help the children that live at the orphanage have food, go to school, and have clothes, while also meeting other needs.
- Money to cover the cost of school for children in the orphanage is needed each month. Money can also be donated to help children in the community of Pallisa be able to attend school as well. Education is so important all over the world, and it is no different in Uganda. Education can allow children to break the cycle of poverty while also giving the students two meals a day that they might otherwise not receive. If the children at the orphanage are covered in school expenses, Samuel can find children in the community that are not otherwise provided with the chance to go to school.
- $6000 is needed to finish the second phase of the medical clinic that will serve Kerith and the surrounding community. The medical clinic will treat the children at Kerith as well as those in the community of Pallisa. Medical treatment is so important as diseases such as Malaria are hard to avoid in Uganda.
- Volunteers are needed to help in the different ministries associate with Kerith.
Each one of these needs is extremely important to keep things running at Kerith. Pray with me that God will provide the money, as well as the people needed to keep the ministries of Kerith running! Let’s keep Kerith covered this summer!
This is the last installment of the quarterly update we received from Samuel that I’ve been giving to you in chunks.
Samuel’s ministry has the goal of building a medical center that will be available not only to the children at Kerith, but also to the surrounding community. With the medical center, they want to specifically aid those who have malaria receive the treatment they need. They also want to help do what they can to keep women from dying during child birth. As malaria is a common health concern in Africa in general, this will help the children at Kerith grow up as healthy as possible while also supporting the community to live healthier lives, even if they have this disease. Children are a gift from our Heavenly Father and I am excited to see that Samuel’s ministry wants to help mothers make it out of child birth alive to raise their children. This project was set up in two phases. Phase one is finished and now the money is needed to start and complete phase two. $6000 is needed to complete the medical center. I ask that you pray for God to provide the money and that you would consider being an avenue through which He does just that.
The ministry supports local widows and single mothers to provide for themselves. Through Bugaga-Foundation, a faith based non-profit, 14 women are currently being supported in the area surrounding Kerith and River of God Church! These women are trained in skills and given loans and are able to use the income from their business in order to support their families. Through the different ministries through which they are allowing God to use them, those involved with Kerith and River of God are a true embodiment of James 1:27: “Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.”
I hope that what is happening for the children of Kerith as well as the surrounding community excites you as much as it does me! Please continue to cover Kerith in prayer as we ask God to cover Kerith financially. I would like to encourage you to consider to be a tool God uses to provide that financial coverage!