Ephesians 2:8-9 "For by grace you have been saved through faith and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast"

Thursday, June 23, 2011

73% of all girls in the slums have been sexually abused. These faces are just some of the girls at the school you are helping to build. I had a chance to help some of these beautiful girls by doing some fun art therapy projects with them! 

Art for the Heart's mission is to have to have a full time art studio at the new school where we will be able to do after school project and counseling  with the most vulnerable children.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Hi Everyone,
This is a quick note to let you know how things are going with building. I went to Kayole yesterday to see how the school is coming along. The men were busy and had the classrooms laid out and a roof on. Joshephat said everything was going as planned except he needed more tin for a toilet. Today I got a email from Josh saying he would like to donate some money so we'll use it for the toilets. I hope Josh isn't offended knowing his money is going for the toilet, but it's pretty important.  Now the only thing needing financing is the cement for the floors. This is something that can be done one classroom at a time as fund becomes available.  I offered to help with construction but things are done differently here. There's a lot of cheap labor and the 'carpenters' are the ones who have the 'tools'.  I use the words CARPENTERS & TOOL loosely. Of course power tools are unheard of but what they do with what they have is truly amazing. For example, the ladders are spindly poles nailed together-certainly wouldn't pass a safety inspection. 

The major problem now is dealing with corruption. Joshephat said a city officials came by again yesterday and try to extort money. It's like the policemen Paula, Dan and I encountered in Zimbabwe. They threatened to throw us in the back of the truck and take us to jail if we didn't give them US dollars. I was proud of Joshephat for standing up to them.  He actually put the fear into them by threatened to report them to the anti-corruption commission. Corruption has become such a way of life that those who are involved in it don't even see it as stealing. This new anti-corruption commission is helping somewhat. Fortunately, the people are getting fed up. 

A personal example of the daily corruption faced in Kenya: Yesterday I got on the matatu bus to go to Kayole and when I got off at the intersection of Jogoo Road to transfer,  I pulled a bunch of coins from my pocket and counted out the fare, 20 shillings (there are two guys on the matatu-one drives and the other takes fares and calls out the stops). Well, the guy who takes the fares got greedy. He said he needed 50 more shillings. On principle,  I told him that I wasn't paying a shilling extra because I had been riding the route for almost three years and knew the fare. However, he didn't budge and insisted that before I could get off I had to give him another 50 shillings. He stood in front of me and blocked my exit and we passed my stop. I told him that he could take me all the way downtown and back but I wasn't giving him one extra shilling. 

Fortunately the driver saw that I meant business so he let me out and I had to get another bus back. You're probably thinking, "why didn't you just give him the extra  50 shillings?"  Because I see this as trying to steal from me and the amount wasn't important. This is just one of the little things that keep life here exciting.
I would like to say again, thank you to everyone who have given to help build the school.  You have helped to improve the lives of some VERY SPECIAL school children, teachers, headmasters and Crossroads Africa Bible College students.
Thanks, Stan 

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Wow Paula, that is awesome! I really wasn't expecting anything from America because I know times are financially tough for everyone. We were content to leave it in God's hands. But it seems funds are being provided by our fellow believers through the leading of the Holy Spirit.

Joshephat and the guys in th......e class have raised-10,000 Kenya Shillings=$110. This is enough to buy the tin for the roof and sides which is the biggest expense. The $125 raised through facebook and the CRA blog it will be enough to build the basic structure. Other funds that come in will be used to buy cement so there will be at least one area for kids to stay dry when it rains.

The government is supposed to help schools but with corruption it just doesn't happen. Recently there was billions of shillings that went missing which was designated for schools. Authorities said it was enough money to build a railroad from the cost of Kenya to Uganda. What a tragedy! Corruption takes the majority of money necessary to develop this country.

However, things are looking better with the new constitution and new Chief Justice. Maybe things will finally start to turn around. Kenya has so much potential.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Before you read this,  please don't say,  "here's another request for money. Everybody wants $ these day!" This is not an email about money...you may or may not be able to make a donation but you can offer a pray on behalf of this situation.  As believers we are often so focused on praying for the needs we see that we forget the ones we can not see. This is a reminder of one of those needs we can not see.
Stan, Crossroads team member living in Nairobi, Kenya,  sent us an email today about a situation that needs IMMEDIATE prayer. It concerns Joshephat,  a young African man who has been a good friend to Stan and indispensable in helping Crossroads.  He and his wife, Nelly,  operate a small school in Kayole, one of Nairobi's slums. They have been gracious in allowing Stan to use the classroom for Crossroads Bible College classes and by acting as his translator. Additionally, this little slum school, known as the Kayole Christian Academy,  is a beacon of hope in the lives of hundreds of children who would otherwise not be able to attend school. Recently, the owners of the property sold it and gave Joshephat two weeks to get out. If this school goes-so does the education of these children. Joshephat has rented another piece of ground but must construct four classroom areas to legally operate a school.  He used every penny to secure a small plot and now needs funds to buy the building materials.
Please understand, we are not talking about constructing a school with cement floors and hinged doors, but rather a school made of wooden poles and tin with dirt floors.  However, even the cheapest building materials have become very expensive in Kenya. Joshephat he needs 53,000KSH (Kenyan shillings) or $650.

While Stan's Bible students, who are very poor, are not able to give money they said they would be honored to help with the building.  Stan relates, "even after being in Kenya for over two years, the level of poverty here in Kayole still amazes me. For example, just the other day,  a young man I know came by my house and asked if he could cut off branches from my Aloe Vera plant to make shampoo".  We can only imagine such poverty.
Stan writes: In closing,  I would like to say that "prayers do get answered. In my last email I asked for prayer for a young street boy named Kazi. I met Kazi while shopping at a market near a dump; he and several other street boys actually live there. Something about Kazi stood out. He didn't appear to be addicted to glue, like most of the boys and when I asked him if he knew Jesus, he said yes. One day I asked Kazi if he would like to make some money doing my laundry (I do laundry outside by a water pump). He answered, "Oh yes. I will do a good job."  For months each time he would leave to go back to the dump he asked me to pray that the Lord would send someone to help him go to school.  I explained to him how our Heavenly Father care for us no mater how desperate our situation my appear.  He waited and waited for his prayer to be answered and finally it came-Monday Kazi attended to his first day of boarding school, sponsored by a local charity.  Not only will he receive the education he so faithfully prayed for but  will also have a safe to live and plenty of food to eat. His Heavenly Father answered his prayer above and beyond anything he could have imagined.
Ephesians 3: 20-21 Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, 21 to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen. 

So please pray that Joshephat will have the funds to buy the building supplies and for my continued wisdom and strength in dealing with the daily challenges of living and ministering in Kenya.
God Bless,
The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.  James 5:16



4M Kenyans Facing Starvation