Monday, September 21, 2009

Swaziland Update

Greetings in the precious name of Jesus!

The past 12 months have been most eventful: defining our place within a new organization and our own ministry goals, computer crashes, forced eviction (by none other than our own embassy), vehicle challenges, ……

But, we are thankful that our God is faithful and that everything we go through works to our good. And while we can attest that we don’t see the good immediately, looking back, we can see His hand in everything:

· Working with African Leadership Partners (ALP) has enabled us to focus on the programs and ministry that God has uniquely given us.

· Being forced to move actually has worked to our benefit. The rent on the house we moved to is significantly cheaper than the house we’ve been in. The house we’ve moved to feels more like a home, more so than the other one ever did. There are enough rooms in this house for all the kids to have their own bedrooms and for Daran to have an office as well.

Ministry Projects

CHIPS: we are finishing up the first year of the Children’s HIV Intervention Programme in Swaziland. Over 400 children and caregivers have tested for HIV through the program this year. 7.3% of the children we’ve facilitated testing have tested HIV+. 49.5% of the caregivers have tested HIV+. CHIPS has allowed us to facilitate life giving care for these children and caregivers. Without it, these children would have faced debilitating disease and certain death. Without it, these caregivers would have succumbed to the disease and left even more orphans. We have had painful experiences during this year as well. Several participants have died, having been brought into the program too late to be able to help medically. But through that, there have been many opportunities to minister to the ailing children and caregivers and to their families and relatives. As we start year 2 of CHIPS, we ask you to continue to pray for wisdom for us to manage and expand the program to new areas and to effectively and personally share the hope found only in Jesus. Regardless of the outcome of any disease or circumstance in any of our lives, the only thing that really matters is that Hope.

Kudvumisa Glass: The youth “skills training” program has continued to develop this year. We have taken the Money Matters course developed and taught by Peter Kopp of ALP and taught it at both full day seminars and weekly classes. We have developed a Money Matters II course as well. Both of these courses have become the core of the skills program. The goal of our skills program was never to ONLY teach a hard skill, but to help effect life changing attitudes relating to personal responsibility, creativity, and recognizing the unique mix of talents, abilities, and dreams God has placed into every one of us. We have teamed with Hawane Lighthouse to implement the Kudvumisa Glass program. Young adults enter the facility through Teen Challenge at Emafini, older orphans from the Lighthouse Care Centres, and referrals from churches around Swaziland. They live at Hawane attending Bible training classes and learning basic life skills (gardening and small livestock). We began teaching the Money Matters courses this term at Hawane and to teach and train on the glass art skills (glass etching, blowing, slumping, beadwork, etc). We hope to move all of the equipment on site over the next few months. This is a huge step forward as we now have a “captive audience” to implement the program, real classroom and real computer lab space to teach the glass skills, and space to set up the equipment on site. We can’t express how excited we are to be able to work with Hawane Lighthouse to offer this program and to further develop what we can offer.

Swaziland Breast Cancer Network: Teresa continues to work with SBCN to help develop a breast cancer care program here. There is no point in trying to develop a first world program in a third world country. Besides impractical, based on standard of care, it would be impossible due to budget at all levels. So SBCN is trying to develop a basic program that will begin the process of developing first class care. Working in a system that often is dysfunctional and even more often doesn’t seem to really care at all about the outcome for a patient can be extremely frustrating. But even in this Teresa has had many opportunities to minister to hurting women and their families. That is a blessing.

The Rehmeyer Family

All of the kids continue to work hard at school. We have Gabby here with us for one more year as she completes the International Baccalaureate program at Waterford. We would ask you to keep our children in your prayers: that they can do their best in school and also develop a heart for ministry. They are learning to play various instruments which is allowing them to help play for worship at church. This is a tremendous opportunity and responsibility for them.

Support & Help

We want to thank everyone who has helped support us here. There have been many donations of one time support and many monthly contributors. We are reliant on everyone who prays for us here. You are all a part of this work. Please continue to lift us up in prayer and prayerful support.

We are asking for a different kind of donation at this point. Teresa and the kids would like to return to the States for Christmas this year. Financially we don’t think it is feasible based on our current support levels. We are asking for donations of frequent flyer miles so that they can afford to return for a few weeks. If you have been able to accumulate points from travel or possibly from a credit card, we would ask that you see what you could donate to us. It would be a tremendous blessing to Teresa, the kids, and family in the States.

Blessings in Christ!

Daran & Teresa

Gabrielle, Danielle, Nathanael, & Joelle

Post a Comment