The Well Project took center stage on the blog over the last couple weeks. But, friends, there have been many other exciting things happening at the same time. In our context, investing in people takes on so many different forms. Let me catch you up on the ways our community has been moving forward, as well as reaching out to others in recent days.
Communities Come Together at the Water Hole
Drilling wells addresses ONE aspect of the water problem. But it is a solution requiring special skills and specific machinery.
So, while the drilling team worked on the wells, the community worked on another aspect of the water problem. Lemuel’s Development department organized a community work day in the big water hole.
The Cash-for-Work team has been steadily chipping away for weeks to enlarge the water hole. Now, whole families came out to get involved cleaning out cracked mud and making the water hole that much deeper.
The initiative will continue with a different community participating each week. People from all around our area come to this water hole for water (when it has some in it), so everyone is coming together to make it bigger and better.
Reaching Out: Easter in Nanyila
Over the Easter weekend, a delegation from the Plateau church went to the mountain community of Nanyila. On Saturday, they walked around the neighborhood, visiting and encouraging the sick and handicapped and sharing the Gospel at various homes.
On Sunday, they celebrated Easter with the church in Nanyila. A group of the youth had prepared some special music to share. The Plateau church also took gifts of food to share with the people of Nanyila, which they separated out and distributed to people after church.
These opportunities to reach out and give to others are also wonderful occasions for personal growth. Dadithe was one of the principal organizers of the trip. I sat and talked with her the other day, and she just exuded joy and excitement as she shared about their time with the people of Nanyila. “We had such an amazing time!” she said. “They were so welcoming and happy to see us. They never have people who reach out to them like this!”
Families Build for a Better Future
We love being able to come alongside people in our community to help them build a better future for their families! Here are two stories:
Regilien has been a dedicated, hard-working employee of Lemuel for many, many years. In fact, he is one of the very first employees we ever had on the Plateau and has participated in most of the development work that has happened since 2004. As a token of our appreciation, we honored him at our employee party last year and promised him assistance in building a block home for his family. We began in January.
Throughout the process, Regilien’s family has been responsible for certain aspects of the construction, while Lemuel has come alongside to assist them with the rest. The walls are going up!
Two different ladies in our community also took steps of determination to invest in their families’ future. Each one came to us about building a cistern at their respective homes (yet another aspect of addressing the water problem on the Plateau). They saved up, and began setting money aside for the purpose. Thanks to project funds raised by a recent team, Lemuel was able to assist them the rest of the way in realizing their cistern projects.
Family Cistern #1:
And Family Cistern #2:
Over the last couple of months, we have been able to sustain a Cash-for-Work program, which has in turn sustained 10 different families in our community. It has also brought out hidden leadership qualities in one of the men (far left), who has been put in charge of the group.
Matthew Recovery Work Continues…
And last but not least, Hurricane Matthew Recovery has continued, focusing on gardens and canals. Slowly, but surely, the recovery work is helping to restore the livelihood of families.