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"Penga ya Wende" or "God is strong!"

This year, along with all other nonprofit organizations, the NGO I work for has suffered unfortunate donations losses. The economic situation in America is being felt around the world, probably more visibly here in Africa. People's wallets are simply being threatened; with income cuts, job losses, and uncertain job security so we are becoming less likely to see a need and actually contribute to it. It's not a big deal to us, we see an organization looking for funds and we simply turn a blind eye. Don't lie to yourselves, everyone at some point ignores the beggar on the side of the road. The ramifications of our actions aren't even seen by us, but here on the ground in W. Africa, working for one such nonprofit, the ramifications of the countries fiscal situation is terrifying. Budget cuts due to lack of donations has cost the children at the school I teach something that has completely changed their lives. We (Heal the World, inc.) no longer have the funds to provide meals for the students at our Shalom primary school. Many might read this and simply think "Big deal, they're Africans they'll survive, they're used to starving." The problem is, I can't think that, I can't even see how someone could. Three days these kids went without food and the effects were clearly visible to me. No smiling faces, no obnoxious kids with constant energy, running around like kids should. They all simply sat through class, heads down, no energy to spare in the hot African heat. This great of an effect, and only after three days?! The budget was cut for the rest of the year!

This put a huge pain in my heart, and I was/am determined to do something about it! As soon as I got home I sent an email to my pastor, Pastor Mark Murphy, begging for funds, begging for offerings to be taken up. His heart was touched and he did just that. He pledged two thousand dollars for the school!!! Literally, I jumped with joy! All my prayers were answered, these kids would eat for months! Going back to the school and telling the headmaster the good news the reality of things hit me dead in the face. That $2,0000 would last a total of... 3 weeks. Three weeks!?

With this bearing down on my heart I contacted the Vice President of the organization who, needless to say, wasn't happy about the kids not eating either. We talked and shared ideas and finally agreed that my two remaining months of service to Heal the World would be better spent in America, advocating, raising awareness, and spreading word of the Shalom schools situation. A situation more dire than my words can stress. Many of the students in that school are orphans, orphans here in Africa simply aren't the same as in America. The orphanages or too few to meet demands, orphans here are more often than not left to fend for themselves.

With my remaining two months I am driving coast to coast speaking in as many churches, colleges and high schools as I can along the way! Running a campaign in the midst of the current economic situation people are less likely to give, so now more than ever I am going to show that a few dollars can make a difference. A donation of six dollars will feed a child for one month here! That's what I am pushing, I will feed the school one child at a time, one month at a time, until I meet my 30,000 dollar goal. $30,000 is the price of feeding the school for one year, and that's a heck of a lot of six dollars. The best part is that it doesn't just nourish their bodies but through Shalom school it nourishes their minds & spirits at the same time! I hope to bring this cause to as many peoples ears as I can, and hopefully my words and pictures will touch their hearts. This is my calling, this is Gods will, and as the Mossi people say "Penga ya Wende" (God is strong!).

Thanks everyone who reads my blog and has felt touched enough to donate! For those who haven't given, I once again ask for one more donation! Help Heal the World by sponsoring me through providing the gas and food it will take for me to tackle such a huge project! Please? Donate Now!


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Thank you for posting this one, it really inspire me a lot and I hope can do this as well. - Thaddeus Heffner

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