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Building Hope

July 11, 2014 — 1 Comment

Have you ever seen hope? I’m going to show it to you…. but first I have a huge announcement that has been years in the making!

One of our main goals in partnering with the Bheveni Community in Swaziland, through Children’s HopeChest, is to only take actions that will benefit the children & community long term. We prayerfully look for opportunities (such as health, education, discipleship, etc.) that will empower & create self-sustainability. Soooo….

We are Building: Bheveni Together! God has moved on the heart of a donor to pledge $25,000 to provide a Multi-Purpose Building at Bheveni! Hallelujah! The completed project cost is $30,000 —> we are SOOOO close! Once the project is 100% FULLY funded, we can begin construction.

The community around the carepoint is excited – they have enthusiastically agreed to help do the ‘grunt’ work! Which is wonderful, because this will be their building that will be used in many ways – preschool, library, grief counseling classes, lifeskills training classes, health classes for the teenagers, and perhaps at some point church & further schooling for the older kids. Once the building is complete, we believe there is a way to get electricity to it and only cost about $2,000 more! THIS WOULD BE A HUGE, HUGE Blessing!!!

If you’d like to be a part of ‘Building: Bheveni Together’ let us know! We can hardly wait til this project is fully funded so construction can begin! In fact, here’s a link to give: Building: Bheveni Together. At the link you’ll need to include this info:

Designated/One TIme Gift: {Enter your donation amount}

Reference Number: SZ3006000

Notes Field: Building

Please let me know if you gave, as I do not personally have access to the individual donations. The picture is an example of a similar structure that would be built on the Bheveni property. It is much, much larger that what we have now!

BuildingExample3pics

 

I said I would show you what hope looks like… Next week we are hand-delivering these letters & pictures (and more!) to the children of Bheveni Carepoint in Swaziland, Africa.

These letters & pictures are why I posted this:

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Really though, get your tissue ready because these are precious.

The 7, almost 8 year old Bella made an incredible self-portrait! Her eyes & smiles are REALLY that big! Thanks Bella!

The 7, almost 8 year old Bella made an incredible self-portrait! Her eyes & smiles are REALLY that big! Thanks Bella!

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A Minnesota day care full of happy kids decided to share the JOY with kids in Swaziland! Thanks guys!

Loving the bright colors!

Loving the bright colors!

Can you say WOW?!? These kids have raw talent!

Can you say WOW?!? These kids have raw talent!

The Lollas were so thoughtful to make Banele his own bookmark!

The Lollas were so thoughtful to make Banele his own bookmark!

This goes down as one of my favorite sponsor letters ever! Thanks Isaac!

This goes down as one of my favorite sponsor letters ever! Thanks Isaac!

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Ciniso is going to love this tiger and acrostic sign! He will feel so special!!!

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A dragonfly, a cliff, sunshine & a rocket… its the stuff boys dreams are made of!

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This is the kind of care package that will make any one feel loved by this family! I mean, who can resist a polar bear & a puppy!

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I hope you take time to read this letter. The lost art of actual letter writing… perhaps it will inspire you to write a letter to someone special!

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The 2nd paragraph has tear stains on it, sorry! *sniff sniff*

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If Meluleki ever thought he was alone or unloved… there’s no way he can now.

Now see, these letters aren’t even written to you, these pictures aren’t even drawn for you, but don’t you feel like you just received a ginormous hug from a long-lost friend? Doesn’t it restore your faith in humanity? Doesn’t it inspire you to go create hope in someone’s life?

Shine On! (and go write a letter!)

Danielle

ps. Here’s that link again to invest in Building: Bheveni Together.

At the link you’ll need to include this info:

Designated/One TIme Gift: {Enter your donation amount}

Reference Number: SZ3006000

Notes Field: Building

Exciting News!

January 18, 2014 — Leave a comment

Hard to believe 2014 has arrived so quickly!

Completely mature, right?

Completely mature, right?

Even harder to believe, I will be 38 years old next month. Y’all, I’m totally not mature enough to be 38! Just this week, you would’ve found me in the kitchen, dancing with my boys to the tune of Weird Al’s “White & Nerdy”. Thank God no one else saw the awkward gyrations & off-key rapping that occurred… except God. Wait. What if He even turned His head from such shenanigans? Nah, I’d rather imagine Him jumping off His throne, poppin a few sweet moves & singing ‘I wanna roll with the gangstas…’ because Jesus is smooth & realz like that.

As much as we all like to be immature & have fun, there is something very important I’d like to share with the Live4Change community.

Have you noticed that 99% of the time I blog, it usually circles back around to our missions work in Swaziland? This post is no exception! I can’t help it – the Lord has wrecked my heart for the precious children & adults of Swaziland, Africa. I really can’t explain it. Just like I can’t explain why my eyes are hazel – its just part of my DNA.

Just as I rejoice with the successes of my own children, I rejoice with the Bheveni children when they are given an opportunity to grow, shine & change their community. The blog is full of such opportunities, but today I want to tell you about an amazing young man, who needs us to celebrate along with him!

Children’s HopeChest has a fairly new program called the Swaziland Leadership Academy. Every year, about a dozen young adults are chosen from all the carepoints to attend. These young adults are not chosen randomly. Prayerfully, the field staff choose the young adults who have continually been a blessing at their local carepoint.

Drum roll…………

One of Bheveni’s young adults, Bhutana (Boo-tawn-a), has been chosen for the 2014 Swaziland Leadership Academy!!!

Bhutana has shown amazing character and leadership potential and will get the chance to spend this coming year being discipled and trained to return to Bheveni in 2015 as a CarePoint leader! WOW! Way to go Bhutana!!

Bhutana: man after God's own heart

Bhutana: man after God’s own heart

Bhutana is 21 years old. He started coming to the carepoint about 5 years ago. We learned that he was being raised by his brother, and together they were trying to take care of 6 younger children because their parents had died. Did you hear that? Eight children were being raised by each other. Unfortunately, this is not uncommon. And fortunately for Bhutana and many other children in the region, they found food, clean water, friendship, and hope at Bheveni Carepoint. Everyday for years, Bhutana has walked 45 minutes to get to the carepoint, I’m sure thanking God for this beacon of hope & provision that is in his community.

A staffer from HopeChest told me “As he moves on to this next stage in life, please keep him in prayer as the devil loves to attack when we are at our best.” These are wise words. I ask that you join me in praying for Bhutana, Octavia and all the SLA students. They need it.

 

Check out the short video. It explains the goals & vision of the SLA program. It features Octavia, who was a first year SLA graduate, and returned to serve at Bheveni Carepoint. In the video (wearing a red shirt), she speaks several times about her desire to change her nation.

Octavia helping to brighten up the playset at Bheveni in July.

Octavia helping to brighten up the playset at Bheveni in July.

Our 2013 team met her in July. Y’all, I don’t say this lightly. She exudes the love of Jesus as she serves, leads, and disciples with complete joy & humility. If the SLA program had anything to do with her transformation, I know that Bhutana’s experience & return to Bheveni in 2015 will be life changing not only for him, but for the entire community. The Bheveni children need a Godly example of what a man should be. There are very few in a nation that has been ravaged by HIV/AIDS… until now. God is raising up a generation that will lay aside their own agenda, their own desires, and be a vessel that God can use to heal a nation. And He’s using the Swaziland Leadership Academy to do it. If you’ve EVER thought your prayers & donations are being thrown to the wind, think again. This is proof that you are investing in the eternal Kingdom of God!

Shine On!

Danielle

ps. We are returning to Swaziland in July. Would you like to join our team? Find out more here Swaziland Mission Trip 2014

 

Hope Is Rising

August 30, 2013 — Leave a comment

It brought so much joy to my heart to read the following post. I love reliving last month’s memories of our first moments with the Bheveni children & bomake. It was such a precious time – as Margo describes – we are no longer strangers, but family. Not only are their names & faces becoming more familiar to us, but their awareness of why we are there is highly evident. We are forming relationships – trusted relationships.

This has been my heart-cry for over three years now, that God would pour His love through us – whatever it takes – so the children would have not only the opportunity for a brighter future, but be filled with a sense of hope, knowing they are valued & are not standing alone. I believe that is happening. Especially when I hear other team members’ experiences, as I’m about to share with you. In a country whose statistics are grim, even threatened by the extinction of the Swazi race – Hope is Rising. Joy is Abounding. God is moving. To the ends of the Earth, the hope of His love & salvation IS growing. 

Many of you are a part of creating that hope. You give. You pray. You write. You go. {You even buy T-shirts & take #selfies just so you can show the children half a world away how much they are loved! More on that subject in a later post.} For now, read the amazing first-hand experience of a woman whose heart has been captured, yet set free to love the children of Swaziland!

—-

The planning for my trip this year pretty much started almost 2 years ago – the day I got home from Swaziland the first time. I knew with the very first smile, the first hug, that it was not if but when I would return.

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The B-Team (B for Bheveni… pretty clever, right?) really doesn’t get serious planning done until the last 6 months or so before we leave. Danielle and Mike, our fearless leaders, do the hard part with the planning – the dates, logistics, the contacts with Children’s HopeChest, setting up the conference calls. The rest of us get to wait for the details. Once the technical stuff is set we get to jump in and start planning the fun stuff: what we’re going to do with the kids. We also discuss what sort of things we can bring to bless the carepoint and the kids. This can sometimes be tricky for us; our first inclination is to try to collect anything and everything that we can. Who wouldn’t want to drop an entire Super Target right smack in the middle of a field and let them loose? But we have to limit what we bring – not only because we have limited baggage space, but more importantly because our visit is not about stuff.Hygiene supplies and underwear are very helpful but they only last so long. Smiles, hugs, laughter – those memories are permanent.

With that being said, I have to say that I had the most awesome time collecting supplies. Each member of our team signed up to bring different items that we planned on handing out. It’s a collect-what-you-can-and-buy-the-rest sort of deal. I put the word out with the items that I wanted to collect and every single item was donated. EVERY SINGLE ITEM. My facebook friends rocked my world – I had stuff shipped to me from different states! I had a trunk load of candy dropped off at my house! I had people contacting me asking what else I needed. And when I came up with the idea of collecting yarn and knitting needles to bring with I had people donating bags and bags of supplies!

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I also felt like this time around I had so much support from friends and family just in general. Not that I didn’t get support during my first trip but this time I really felt the love. Maybe it’s because people realized that it wasn’t just a one time thing for me, maybe (hopefully) people felt connected to my journey and to Swaziland, maybe it was to make me shut my trap because I can’t stop talking about how much I love Swaziland – I can’t really say. I had a lot of people send me encouraging words, people generously blessed us financially, and there were people praying for me, my family, and the entire trip. At the risk of sounding ridiculously corny, I felt like I had my own little “village” cheering me on throughout the whole process of preparing for, and while I was on the trip.

I’ll skip the details of the travel time (a day and a half? two days?) and get to the good stuff: Bheveni Carepoint. We left Johannesburg, South Africa in the morning and drove the 5-6 hours to get across the Swazi border and to where we were staying. We basically dropped our luggage off at the Guest House (that’s where we stay – it’s like a hotel only much smaller) and headed to Bheveni so we could see the kids for a couple of hours. Our team this year had 17 people and of the 17, only 6 had been to Bheveni – but everyone was equally excited. As we approached the carepoint my heart sped up. I couldn’t wait to see everyone again! My mind was racing… would I recognize the kids? It had been almost 2 years since I had seen them. Would they remember me? Surely not. Will the Bomake (Bo-MA-gay – the women that keep the carepoint running) be the same? Will any of them remember us?

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We had discussed on the drive to the carepoint that we were not even going to take our cameras out during this first visit – mostly because we wanted to get (re)acquainted with our friends here and not have it turn into a circus. Also, we Americans can sometimes forget with all of our technology to actually live the moment instead of just recording it.

I tell you, as I stepped out of our bus and got the first real look at the beautiful blue building and all of the children running around it, I got goose bumps and tears in my eyes. I remember thinking ‘I’m home.’

It didn’t take long before we were surrounded with children – giggling, whispering, hands reaching out for hands. We made our way over to the “kitchen” area so we could greet the Bomake and I was surprised and in awe that most of them remembered me. My highlight from the day was when Gcebile, (Nay-BE-lay) the preschool teacher who I bonded with during the last trip, walked up to me and said “Margo!” as she embraced me. That she remembered my name after all of this time – it was awesome.

We spent the afternoon playing and talking and holding and hugging kids of all ages – it was heaven. We got to see the Bomake in action and even help a little – cooking and serving the kids. We got our first look at the garden that has become the pride and joy of the carepoint.

Even though it was only a few hours at the carepoint and it was just a taste of the joy that we would feel throughout the week…. it was an incredible day.

—–

Shine On!

Danielle

The Incredibles.

July 20, 2013 — 1 Comment
The Incredible B-13s

The Incredible B-13s

Incredible. I’ve been using that word so often lately its become the new ‘cool’, the new ‘awesome’. One or two syllable words just no longer cut it! This has been a 4-syllable season, indeed! In. cred. i. ble!  

The past six weeks, especially, have been full of incredible encounters that didn’t happen because of my husband’s good looks (though, seriously he is incredibly handsome – see photo below!), nor did these things happen as a result of my organizational skills (ha!). God showed up. He heard our desperate prayers for mountains to be moved, for heavenly provision to be made, for doors to be opened, and He has flooded us with answering above & beyond what we thought we needed. Glory to God!

One of these incredible answers to prayer came in the form of sponsorship.

151 children now have an advocate who cares, prays, and provides specifically for their well-being!

151 children now have an advocate who cares, prays, and provides specifically for their well-being!

As of last Monday, the 15th, all 151 profiled children at Bheveni Carepoint became sponsored!!!!!

I’m REALLY resisting telling the whole story here! As of a month ago, 49 children at Bheveni were waiting for a sponsor, an advocate. That number, 49, seemed HUGE, but the Lord put the desire in us to have ALL of them sponsored before our trip.

We started praying, knowing that in ourselves we could not make this happen, God had to move. We prayed like it depended on God, but worked like it depended on us – our online faith community stepped up and began talking to their friends & family, their churches, their co-workers, and as a result every single child profiled at Bheveni has a sponsor!!!! Glory to God!

Side note: there are still thousands of orphaned & vulnerable children in Swaziland who need an advocate. One such community of children attend Lesibovu Carepoint in rural Swaziland. Out of 84 children who daily rely on the carepoint for food, 37 still need an advocate. Follow this link to find out more!

In 3 days, Mike & I embark on another journey across the world to a land of people we love & a group of children we’ve come to know as family. This will be our third trip to visit, love & serve the Bheveni Carepoint Community in Swaziland, Africa, and we are taking the biggest team yet.

Our team of 17 adults & teens have been planning and praying for months, all leading up to this trip. A handful of this incredible team went with us in 2011 to visit the children, but the majority of the team are strangers.

Imagine that, going across the world with a group of people you’ve never met, to a place you’ve never been, knowing you can’t afford it, not knowing what you’ll encounter… so, if I know anything about the individuals on this team, it is that they are full of faith. And that’s enough for me. I count it a privilege to have them a part of the B13’s (Bheveni Team 2013).

Perhaps you wanted to come on the trip too, but couldn’t make it happen this year. You can STILL come… through the incredible power of the world wide web!

Throughout our trip, we will have an online diary, of sorts, for the team to share their experiences from the day, as well as photos of the children & the beautiful country, right here on Live4Change.net. Please subscribe via email (right column) so you can be a part of the journey. 

I want to introduce these incredible world-changers one by one. And I ask you to pray for them one by one.

Regina Anderson

Regina Anderson

Regina Anderson is a life long resident of Fort Worth, Texas. She is a licensed attorney and currently represents child protective services in child abuse and neglect litigation for the State of Texas. She is a sister, daughter, aunt and child of the Most High God.

 

 

Sterling Brawley (right)

Sterling Brawley (right)

Hey yall, my name is Sterling Brawley. I am 22 years old, a recent graduate from the University of North Texas with a degree in Criminal Justice. When we return from Swaziland, I will be starting a new job with AmeriCorps partnering with Habitat for Humanity. I enjoy spending time with my family, friends and love sports!

 

Margo Brown

Margo Brown

Margo Brown from Minnesota. I have an amazing husband, Dustin, and three great kids: Miles who is 13, Linus who is 11, and Greta who is 9. This will be my second trip to Swaziland and I can’t wait to see the everyone at Bheveni again!

 

 

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Brittany, Pam, Britt, and Missy Bush

Hi, my name is Britt Bush. I have been an N/C Programmer at Bell Helicopter since 2000. I have been a fan of Bheveni since right before the first trip in 2010. I was lucky enough to go on the next trip and was hooked for life! These kids are unbelievable! They have hopes and dreams just like us, just like our kids. And God is going to do big things with this group because of your love and support and hope you give these children. Thanks for allowing me to be a representative of this online Bheveni community!

My name is Pam Bush. I’m an accountant and live in Fort Worth, Texas. My husband went on the trip to Swaziland a couple years ago. He was really impacted by working with the kids and wanted our whole family to experience the blessing of serving at Bheveni! I can’t wait to get there and share with the kids and meet our sponsored girls!!!

Hey y’all, I’m Brittany! I am a nursing student and have a huge heart for others. I love my Jesus, chips & salsa, baseball (Texas Rangers), baking, fishing, and spending time with my family. I feel beyond blessed to have the opportunity to share God’s love with His precious children at Bheveni Carepoint!

I am Missy Bush. I am a college student majoring in athletic training. I enjoy playing sports and anything outdoors. When I was in middle school I began sponsoring a little boy in Kenya and ever since, Africa has had a special place in my heart. I’m so excited and feel beyond blessed to finally have the opportunity to go to Africa to love on the kids and share the love of Christ with them.

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Kim Caraway

Kim Caraway: I am from the great state of Texas and I graduated from Texas Tech University with a BA in Psychology and a BS in Human Development and Family Studies. I love college football especially my Red Raiders. I have worked for Child Protective Services for 21 years. After reading Radical by David Platt, God called me to Swaziland, two years ago and I made my first trip then. I fell in live with the people especially the children. God has called me to be an advocate for the Swazi children and I am humbled and blessed by this.

DeniseCasonCreateHope2013b

DeNise Cason

DeNise Cason. I am from Alabama and had the opportunity to go to Swaziland in 2011 with an amazing group of people who came together through Children’s HopeChest. My reason for wanting to return to Bhevenni is two-fold. 1 – Out of allegiance to my Lord Jesus Christ it is my duty and privilege to share the gospel with the world. 2 – I want to continue to build and strengthen relationships with the Bheveni community. The people there have such kind and loving spirits. I want to encourage and further their thirst for knowledge of God and His love and reassure them they have friends around the world who love and care about them.

 

Bobbie Dyer

Bobbie Dyer

My name is Bobbie Jo Dyer. I am originally from Tennessee but I have lived in Georgia for 15 years and it has become my home. I have two children: Braden, who is 8 and Brianna who is 4. I have been divorced, after 15 years of marriage, for a very short time but this change has allowed me to receive God’s plan and purpose in my life more openly. I have always felt called to do work in Africa and through his divine appointments and persuasion, I am finally fulfilling this calling. I am excited and eager to meet the children at that care point and to spend time with them, by showing God’s love. And I am ready to receive what it is that God is doing in my life as he draws me closer to him.

 

HaidenFloydCreateHope2013b

Haiden F.

Haiden hails from Portland, Oregon. She is special friend to Sfiso, a young boy at the Mangwaneni Carepoint in Manzini. Haiden is the Children’s Sunday School Director at her church. An avid reader, she enjoys reading books about Jesus while slurping sweet frappuccinos on a warm summer day.

 

Audrey Hensley

Audrey Hensley

I’m Audrey Hensley! I’m from New Boston, Texas and a graduate from the university of Texas at Tyler with a degree in education. I will be teaching 1st grade at New Boston in the fall!!! I felt called to go to Africa so God can strengthen my faith and trust in Him. Throughout this summer I’ve grown to depend completely on Him and trust that He is guiding me in the direction I long to be going. He’s strengthened my servant’s heart while preparing myself for serving these children as well as the kids at camp, and that could only be done when I surrendered the reigns of my heart to Him.

Theresa with her husband, Larry

Theresa with her husband, Larry

Hello, my name is Theresa Schmidt.  My husband and I live in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.  When our children were young I was very involved with the schools they attended.  Although my children are grown now, I continue to volunteer reading with children.  I have a special place in my heart for kids and there are no borders to children in need; thus, I am very excited about our upcoming mission trip to Bheveni Carepoint – Swaziland!  I pray that God abundantly blesses our 2013 mission trip.

 

Millie Snook

Millie Snook

Millie– orphan care advocate. ardent intercessor. washington wahini. northwest native. lover of all things creative. karate choppin organic vegetable shoppin mama. happy helpmate to honey of more than 20. thankful for more years than tears with my hubby. baby whisperer. good steward tho not quite martha stewart. skiing scouting scooting along running trails. flowing on the go yogi. dribbling on the basketball court and sometimes the dentist chair. life is not a slam dunk. we all need Jesus. He’s the only One.

Michael Snook

Michael

Michael– good sport in every sport. super sonics and die hard sounders fan. been called mr hops and by Jesus. reaching for the dunk jumpin higher than the bar. always striving for the PR. ultimate goal is the higher calling. child of the One True King. “A” student. BOOM! BACON.

 

Andy, Danielle, Mike, and Jonny

Andy, Danielle, Mike, and Jonny

Here’s our little family, too. We live in Kimball, Minnesota. 🙂 Our boys will be traveling with us to Swaziland in two years. We can hardly wait for them to meet the Bheveni children that have so captured all of our hearts! They get to be spoiled by grandpa, grandma & their aunties in Minnesota this time around!

 

 

Please keep this incredible team in your prayers! Wanna see those incredible prayers answered? You can! Stay up-to-date on the mission by virtually going with us – subscribe to this blog via email, watch for updates on the Bheveni Carepoint Community Facebook Page, and of course our HopeChest Bheveni Community Webpage.

Shine On!

Danielle Brower

ps. for the record, we are not, nor do we think of ourselves as heroes going to ‘save’ the children of Swaziland, even though I’ve got a super cool picture of ‘Incredibles’ at the top! Jesus is the Hero, and He’s already saved them. We’re going to serve the kids, the HopeChest staff, and the volunteers who serve the kids every single day of the year. Our prayer is that this trip creates continued hope that they are valued, loved, and not forgotten.

It’s All About Love

February 9, 2013 — Leave a comment
Lindani's joy is incomparable!

Lindani’s joy is incomparable!

Valentine’s Day is all about spreading & sharing love with those who are dear to your heart. This year we invite you to spread your wings of love even further by one simple, selfless act:

Join people all over the country who are giving up

ONE day’s lunch money*

to show real love to waiting children

in Swaziland, Africa.

 

Your lunch funds will go to the care of orphaned, vulnerable,

waiting children at Bheveni Carepoint in rural Manzini, Swaziland.

Click here to give!

 

Zinhle, Nomphilo, Siyabonga and others enjoying their only meal of the day behind the carepoint wall, away from the heat of the sun.

Zinhle, Nomphilo, Siyabonga and others enjoying their only meal of the day behind the carepoint wall, away from the heat of the sun.

 

Currently, 38 childrens’ needs are NOT funded, but walk miles every day to Bheveni and rely on the carepoint for clean water, nutritious food, and to learn about Jesus’ love for them… a child is never turned away  but until they are sponsored we must make sure they are provided for through events such as this.

 

The need is great.

Let our love be greater.

One Day. One Lunch. Feb. 14th.

Click here to give!

 

As you go into a week that celebrates love for all, I challenge you to give up your lunch money on Valentine’s Day – to go without lunch so they don’t have to. *Or pick something this Valentine’s Day that you can live without – coffee, flowers, or a special dinner (notice I did not suggest you go without chocolate – we gotta be realistic here!)

Shine On!

Danielle

P.S. Our ultimate goal is to get ALL the children to have a sponsor, giving $34 a month to provide for their basic needs… so if you are interested in consistently sharing the love of Jesus with the Bheveni children, go to this link: http://www.hopechest.org/community/bheveni/sponsor/

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Bongiwe, whose name means ‘acceptance’ and ‘gratitude’ is a young Swazi teen who attends Bheveni Carepoint in Swaziland, Africa. I met her on our last trip there in September 2011. She is a bright, articulate young lady living with one of our Bheveni bomake. She never knew her father & her mother died several years ago, but her spirit & resolve are strong, in spite of the many obstacles she has had to overcome.

Beautiful Bongiwe

When I met her, Bongiwe had a large growth inside her cheek (later found out it was in her sinuses) that was affecting not only her ability to eat properly, but also her vision. Upon a closer look, it was obvious she was in pain and ashamed of how she looked. We were able to give her some antibiotics while we were in Swazi, but the local missionaries have really taken time to get to know her, and to get her the care she has needed in the last 9 months. {Shout out to Mrs. Amy McAdams!!!}

I want to update you on how Bongiwe is doing now! As you read this, please allow yourself to see how God works through your prayers and financial resources. You’ve allowed a young lady’s life to be FOREVER CHANGED – to know she is cared for & loved – because you gave & continue to care!

More than a dozen of you gave towards her medical treatment a few months back. Thank you! She is doing well right now, but has been thru a LOT!

The growth that was removed from her face/sinuses in February had grown back and was causing her teeth to be pushed out of alignment (and sometimes OUT) by the swelling or whatever it is. In early May, the ENT in Mbabane took a biopsy of the growth, hoping for some more clarity for how to proceed. This was a really painful experience, as you can imagine!

She did really well. The biopsy showed only “nonspecific” swelling and some infection. She will be on Prednisone indefinitely to try to reduce the swelling, but TB and cancer were ruled out. Hallelujah!

Another bit of good news: A recent missionary team member has taken Bongiwe’s lab reports back to the US, to her husband who is an ENT! He will be able to look at them and give an educated 2nd opinion, to make sure she’s getting the best treatment possible. I love how God is working valiantly on Bongiwe’s behalf!

And MORE good news: While Bongiwe is not ‘out of the woods’ so to speak in regards to the growth on her face, her trust in God has not wavered.  She is doing incredibly well in school, now that she can attend regularly!

{Side NOTE: All the Bheveni kids’ school fees for the year have been provided through several online events held this winter through Children’s HopeChest and our Bheveni supporters across the United States! Thank you!}

IN fact, missionary Amy McAdams (who’s been with Bongiwe every step of the way) says, “Bongiwe was recently chosen as the ONE person to represent her school in an “accounting and business” competition. I have no idea what that is, but she is very proud. And nervous. Will be competing against kids in upper grades and from “big” schools…. So proud of her. She is doing very well in school it seems.”

Bongiwe's Letter of Faith

When we visited her in September, Bongiwe wrote this letter to her future sponsor (she’s now sponsored!). While the picture is a little fuzzy, Bongiwe’s handwriting & articulation is beautiful. In one part she states, “when you read Proverbs 15 verse 3 where the Bible tells us that the eyes of God are in every place, watching the good ones and the bad ones, that gives me a clear picture that there is nothing impossible with our living God, all things are possible.”

Her faith is humbling, is it not? And see what God has done with her faith? He had moved on the hearts of people across the world to advocate, pray, and change her life! And who knows whose lives SHE will touch (besides mine!) as a result. Each of you will have ‘stake’ in the harvest her life will bring! Remember, with God all things are possible to him who believes!!!

What are YOU believing God for?

Shine On!

Danielle

One of the many ways that God blessed our missions trip to Swaziland was to show us how the ministry between Children’s HopeChest, AIM, and the carepoints actually work. Obviously our chief concern is how these relationships & ministries effect our children who attend Bheveni Carepoint.

It’s about the Kids!!!!

I can say unequivocally that those who are ministering to our Bheveni kids have the kids needs at the center of everything they do. From the leaders of HopeChest here in America, to Jumbo & Kriek Gerber who are AIM’s Swaziland leaders, to the Discipleship Team who know the children and teach them about Jesus every week. IT IS ABOUT THE KIDS!!!!

What a relief it was to see for myself that yes, it is about the children – it’s not about making a name for their ministry, or having all the best technologies or vehicles to transport teams & staff. No. Let me be clear – it is most definitely about making sure our kids are cared for body, soul, and spirit.

Gratitude to Deb Gangemi

Deb Gangemi

I want to take a moment to thank a very special person. Deb Gangemi. Deb was Bheveni’s sponsorship coordinator from the beginning of the carepoint’s existence. Through God’s grace and her passion for the Swaziland kids, she led hundreds of people to pray for & give to our Bheveni kids for over a year & a half. The building, the outhouse, the fence, the garden, the water tower, the well – all these things you see in the pictures are a result of her efforts to seek funding and support. Deb I hope you know how thankful I am for the foundation you laid, for all the time you gave. We are reaping the rewards for the seed you’ve sown and so are the children of Bheveni. Thank you!

Let’s THRIVE together!

A solid foundation has been built at Bheveni. Kids are being fed and have access to clean water. Kids are learning. Bheveni has become what the vision was nearly two years ago – to provide a safe haven for the area children to not only be fed, but also to hear about Jesus & grow in Him. This is happening. To God be the glory!

The goal of CHC & AIM and our FB Community is to see to it that the children who come to carepoints are not only surviving now, but also thriving & succeeding. This definitely happens because of a strong partnership community. Our goal is to raise up a strong Bheveni Carepoint and surrounding community, one that is NOT solely dependent on provision by us, but one that thrives & is able to rise up and grow beyond what they thought possible. We want our helping to actually help – not hurt or cause dependency on anyone but Jesus.

One Striking Difference

I think this is one of the main ways that HopeChest and AIM differ from other large ministry organizations – they seek not only to give the kids a meal or clean water, but to genuinely help them to help themselves beyond mere survival by creating ways for them to thrive in areas such as:

(While some of these services may be supported by child sponsorship, additional sources of support are required)

  • Education – each child must have the opportunity to go to school.  School fees are costly and must be paid each year in order for a child to graduate to the next grade level. Many families, especially with multiple children find this very difficult. Soon I will be sharing with you a plan to help each of our Bheveni kids thrive in this area.

  • Enhanced medical care through cross Carepoint initiatives

  • Initiate activities through the community that increases ability to earn a living wage (micro-enterprise, occupational training)

  • Engage in developing or building up an indigenous led local church. Each child should be able to have access to a local church & body of believers.

Partnering & Sponsorship

You and I are partnering with this vision. By sending in $34 a month, you are not just supporting one child. You are supporting & helping to fund an entire community at Bheveni. It helped me to view sponsorship this way:

With my $34 a month, I am SPONSORING a community and I am MENTORING a child within that community.

Siphiwe & I at Bheveni

I love this approach – it gives me greater hope for my sponsored child that she will grow up in a safe environment with all the opportunities before her to be the best she can be. I know that Siphiwe (my special friend) is fed & cared for at Bheveni & has access to discipleship & medical attention if necessary. But my money also goes to support the greater Bheveni community needs that Siphiwe has full access to. And I have an opportunity to write letters & pray for her as she grows up in Bheveni Community.

Perhaps you currently do not sponsor a child, but still want to make a difference at Bheveni. I’ll be presenting opportunities soon whereby you can be involved in being a positive influence on children across our world without being a specific child’s sponsor. We are moving forward & growing along with the needs of our carepoint kids & community! I am thrilled to be a part of the plan!

God bless each of you!

Danielle

P.S. You’ve been receiving daily emails from Moms4Change due to our missions trip. But starting this week, Moms4Change will be publishing only two post per week on Tuesdays & Fridays, through the end of the year.  On my next post I’ll be announcing the winner of the Timbali purse – so get to commenting! 🙂

Hope Is FOUND!!!!

June 25, 2010 — 2 Comments

We have sponsored a young girl, Siphiwe, for over a year now through Children’s HopeChest. HopeChest along with Adventures in Missions has 19 Carepoint Sites through Swaziland, Africa. Siphiwe comes daily to the Beveni Carepoint along with 131 other orphaned and vulnerable children.

The Beveni Carepoint is where the children receive food (usually their only meal of the day), clothing & medical treatment if needed, education & love because of the committed workers who run the Carepoint, but also because they have sponsors who give $34 a month to Children’s HopeChest that sees to it these individual children are cared for body, soul & spirit.

Sponsorship is a $34 a month commitment, with the opportunity to communicate with a sweet, but needy child via letters & translation of emails by Children’s HopeChest. Please contact me, Danielle, to begin to change a life & be their HOPE!  danielle.moms4change@gmail.com Thank you!!! You won’t regret it.

These six children were in need of new sponsors, but in a few short weeks, families stepped up & stepped in to support them both financially & with love. Thank you sponsors for being HOPE!

Won’t you be the change 4 a child’s life?

SPONSORED on 07.21.2010 Thokozani, age 13, lives about 15 minutes from our carepoint with nine other children. He enjoys sports, singing, agriculture, and reading to name a few. If you can support Thokozani, please message or email me. I have more details about him & how sponsorship works. danielle.moms4change@gmail.com THX

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SPONSORED on 06.29.2010 Little Bukiwe is about 6 years old. Her personality is best described as active, composed, introverted, and competitive. Know any other little girls like this!? 🙂

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SPONSORED on 07.01.2010 Nomcebo is a beautiful 16 year old girl who lives a 20 minute walk from our carepoint. She likes singing, dancing, cooking and reading, among other things. She is described as good-natured, introverted and sensitive.

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SPONSORED on 07.12.2010 Zandile is about 8 years old. Her current home is about one hour’s walk from Beveni each day. She is described as composed, friendly, and curious. If you can support Zandile, please message or email me. I have more details about her & how sponsorship works. danielle.moms4change@gmail.com THX

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SPONSORED on 07.12.2010 Mhlengi is 19 years old and in the 11th grade. He lives with his aunt and 6 other children. He is described as an extrovert and competitive. If you can support Mhlengi, please message or email me. I have more details about him & how sponsorship works. danielle.moms4change@gmail.com THX

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SPONSORED on 07.12.2010 Mduduzi is about 14 years old. He lives about 20 minutes from the Beveni Carepoint. He lives with his parents & eight other children. He is in the 5th or 6th grade now.  If you can support Mduduzi, please message or email me. I have more details about him & how sponsorship works. danielle.moms4change@gmail.com THX

Moms – here’s your chance to become HOPE to another child, who needs love & care just as your own do.