Posts Tagged ‘children’

Because Of You 3 Kids Have New Families

Tuesday, November 12th, 2019

These kids are thankful you gave them their new family

Thanksgiving offers us a season to reflect and be truly grateful for the way God has touched and blessed our lives.

For orphan children like Raji, Marissa, and Henri they are truly grateful for the blessings you bring to them all year long!

This is Raji

This is Raji

Raji has been through a lot in his young life. In order to provide for his family, Raji’s father went to a distant state in India for a welding job. He had to leave behind his wife, Raji and his younger brother.

But the job was a good one and it offered good wages. Raji’s father was only able to visit home once or twice a year and this wasn’t enough to keep the home fires of love burning brightly.

Raji’s mother developed a relationship with another man. When Raji’s father returned home the next time, his wife refused to live with him. She no longer wanted him nor Raji or his brother.

The breakup of this home was devastating. The mother didn’t want Raji, and the father was more like a stranger than a father. He couldn’t keep his job and keep the boys. As is often the case, the broken life of a child is the sad result of a broken marriage.

Raji’s father begged us to accept the boys into our care. And knowing of the compassionate heart that you and other ICC family members have for children like Raji, who need the nurturing care of a loving Christian family, our administrator welcomed Raji and his little brother into the ICC family.

This is Marissa

This is Marissa

Marissa, along with her siblings, was found wandering the streets of a city in Guatemala. As a result of a court order, they became a part of the ICC family at Los Pinos.
Efforts were made to locate family members. When the authorities found out the mother was not working in a reputable occupation and was not providing any care for

Marissa and her siblings were taken into care by the government.

These children were initially sent to one children’s home and then another before finally becoming a part of our ICC family.

Joel Carpio, our Los Pinos director, knew of the emotional and psychological trauma the children had experienced from being moved around. Rather than letting the children be dropped off yet again at another facility, he arranged to pick them up himself and drive them to the Los Pinos Children’s Village.

They had a pleasant trip with him and were excited and full of joy as soon as they arrived. That day was the Father’s Day celebration and they became very involved in the program. That day Marissa and her siblings began to experience first-hand what it means to be a part of a loving family—with a mom and dad.

Imagine coming to the Los Pinos campus when the families were celebrating fathers. Marissa’s own father was not a part of her life. Yet, thanks to ICC family members like you, she can now experience the love of an earthly father. And more importantly, within the ICC family, she will learn of her heavenly father and the home He is preparing for her.

This is Henri

This is Henri

Henri’s mother died as a result of being caught up in the war between rebels and government forces in the D.R. Congo. His father is blind and had no way to protect Henri or provide for him.

Henri’s story is similar to other children who have come to us from this country filled with violence and natural disasters.

War tears children from their mother’s arms. And the children are left with little hope and nothing to live for unless help comes from outside.

And again, thanks to your support, Henri has been given a new life within the ICC family at Patmos Children’s Village. And the pieces of his life are being slowly put back together.

Through the support of ICC family members like you, Raji, Marissa, and Henri have found a place of safety and a place to belong. They are thankful for the blessings you help to provide for them each day.

World Orphan Day Spotlights the Plight of Orphans

November 11 is World Orphan Day. On this day, many people around the world will be paying special attention to the needs of orphans. We are so very grateful that you care about orphans, not just on November 11, but every day of the year!

Your loving and generous support makes it possible for our dedicated family of caregivers to provide all that Raji, Marissa and Henri and others like them need.
These children don’t really care about a day of the year that focuses on their needs. What they need is daily care. That is only possible as you continue to partner with us to love them and provide for them.

As we celebrate this year’s Thanksgiving holiday here in the U.S., we’ll be reminded of the bountiful blessings God has given to us throughout another year — good health (or at least access to quality health care), loving family relationships, opportunities to grow, develop and succeed.

As we reflect upon those blessings God’s given during this Thanksgiving season, please consider giving a special thank you gift to help support children like Raji, Marissa, and Henri who are finding out what it means to be a part of a loving family.

Thank you!

May God bless you with a Happy Thanksgiving!

10 Facts You Didn’t Know About Idjwi Island

Tuesday, November 5th, 2019

By William Hurtado

An aerial map showing Idjwi Island and the surrounding area.“Africans, we are lucky.”Jacques Sebisaho, MD, speaking at a Ted Talk, continues; “We have other creative minds that are focusing their efforts, wealth, and education to make our continent a better world. We are grateful to have them help us.”

Jacques is from one of the remotest places in Africa: Idjwi island on Lake Kivu between the Democratic Republic of Congo and Rwanda. The Patmos Children’s Village is located there and is home to 164 orphans supported by contributors like you.

While neighboring countries have endured wars and violence, Idjwi has remained a peaceful oasis for around 260,000 people. But when Sebisaho returned to Idjwi, he was shattered by what he saw and called “a forgotten place.”

Idjwi Island, the size of Atlanta, GA or Portland, OR has no electricity except through generators and solar panels, and much of the island lacks potable drinking water and paved roads.

As Sebisaho built a hospital on Idjwi to help relieve his people’s medical needs, he realized that helping Africans is more than financial. It is partnering with the right organizations who help natives maximize their own strength and creativity.

In his Ted Talk Sebisaho concluded, “today, I would like to introduce to you the less known creative minds that are also solving Africa’s problems. The women, the pygmies, and children. These are the people I know. While they are grateful for all of the great minds, all of the wealthy and educated people who are focusing on Africa, they are in themselves a powerful solution to their problems.” When their creativity is empowered, there are no limits.

A photo of Munaneza while he was living at the Patmos Children's Village on Idjwi IslandAnd that, ICC ministry partner, is what you do every time you support ICC’s children. Whether it be in Africa, Central America, or a country in between, every dollar you give translates to empowerment for a once-orphaned child. Through your faithful gifts, you give children, like Munyaneza, a new life.

Recently, I connected with Munyaneza Louis from the D.R. Congo. He says, “l’m at Patmos on Idjwi Island now. God is our protector.”

Munyaneza was taken to the Patmos Children’s Village after he lost his parents in an accident.

There he was cared for and given the opportunity to become educated. Even though the old school building at Patmos needed serious updating, the children still received an education that helped Munyaneza eventually become a nurse.

A photo of Munyaneza while he was training to become a nurseThis year Munyaneza finished nurses training and is ready to help people in his country. He is giving back. Through people like you, he is achieving so much! What he recently wrote to me he writes to you. “I’m your child.”

Munyaneza is one of many stories of children growing up into Christ-likeness from the 41 years of faithful giving from donors like you. You make stories like this possible!
You make an eternal difference in the lives of children. The investments of money and time you make are considered “pure and undefiled religion” by our Heavenly Father.

Thank you so much for taking the time to be His hands and feet. It is true — Your gifts save and empower lives!

P.S. Were you able to find 10 interesting facts about Idjwi Island? Try sharing them with a friend! You never know, through your encouragement and their new support, all of us may be hugging more children in Heaven soon.

Unusual Legacy Donation Blesses Children

Tuesday, October 29th, 2019

Editor’s Note: ICC’s ministry is a world-wide ministry that touches the lives of not only orphan children, but many people who have a compassionate heart for “His Kids!”

A photo of Richard Van der Pols, director of IKN (ICC Netherlands)The following is a report from Richard Van der Pols, ICC Netherlands director. He shares a recent experience of how God blessed the children of ICC through an unusual manner.


I recently received a call from a man who lives in Utrecht. He wanted to make a donation. But first, he wanted to talk to me in person, so he got on the train to Leeuwarden and we met at the ICC Netherlands office.

Piet (not his real name) told me that his uncle died and that he had received a legacy from him. He never had a real relationship with his uncle, so for Piet it felt a bit weird to have this money.

That is why he started a search. During the search, he found out that his uncle was a donor of ICC Netherlands.

Piet told me that he did not want to use the legacy for himself. He wanted to give it to ICC Netherlands. And he also does not want his name to be used with the money. It is an anonymous gift.

I promised him that we would treat the gift as he wishes. The total amount will be around € 49.000 (about $54,000).

Isn’t this amazing? I thanked Piet with tears in my eyes and told him that his legacy will give us the opportunity to support a lot of children. His gift is very generous. It’s not every day that you meet a person like Piet.


Note: Many ICC family members generously include ICC in their estate planning.

We are happy to provide information to you free of charge that may help you be a further blessing to “His Kids.” Call Doug Congleton at 800-422-7729 for more details.

Urgent Equipment Needs @ Los Pinos

Tuesday, October 22nd, 2019

Guatemala Needs Your Help

An illustration of an elderly, ill, stone-age computer being evaluated by a computer “doctor.”Remember the last time your old, slow, but still somewhat trusty-ish computer suddenly wheezed its last, went blue in the screen, and simply gave up?

Leaving you having to acquire (before you were really ready) a current, functioning computer?

It’s during events such as these that we’re abruptly reminded (and probably not for the first time) how important it is to have up-to-date techology to sucessfully function in today’s world.

Like you, the staff at our Los Pinos Children’s Village in Guatemala also need and benefit from computers and tech equipment that is up-to-date and functions properly.

Los Pinos needs to replace three computers. The current computers are old, outdated, and do not function properly. New computers will help the project secretary, the accountant, and the school manage information about the children for the Secretary of Education.

Two video projectors are needed as well to replace one projector for the school and another projector used by the Los Pinos on-campus social worker and psychologist.

Please make a gift today to help purchase one or more of these much-needed and necessary technolgy items for your family at Los Pinos.

Thank you!

2 Computers — $878 Each For the Los Pinos office staff

1 Laptop — $649 For the children’s
 school records

2 Video Projectors — $621 Each For our school and on-campus social workers

School is in Session on El Oasis Campus

Tuesday, October 15th, 2019

Much of the recent news we’ve shared about ICC’s El Oasis project in Mexico has centered on the growth of the Jalapeño pepper project. God continues to bless, and the little seeds have sprung up into a successful crop that is still being harvested.

While the pepper project is one way that God has blessed us in helping to provide for the children, agriculture is not ICC’s primary focus. It’s the children! They are like growing plants that have such potential to be a part of the harvest that Jesus will take with Him to Heaven. And one way that the children grow best, is to have them experience quality education.

School has recently started for ICC children at El Oasis, and we’re excited to report that the children are attending their classes at the school on campus.

A photo of the school facility on the El Oasis campus in Mexico

Even though a school facility has been provided on campus through the generosity of the Malcolm Smith Foundation, it just hasn’t been feasible for ICC to operate the school. It has been very difficult to obtain the necessary approvals from the government.

However, ICC’s model of care is best realized, and the children flourish best in a school program that accommodates for their special needs. A campus school provides a safe and nurturing environment for the children.

With that in mind, the El Oasis administrative team has been trying to find a way to make this possible. And this year, through God’s blessing, we can operate a type of home school program on campus. Students in the lower grades are enrolled in a school some distance away and students in the upper grades are enrolled in a different school. Under the supervision of El Oasis staff, the children will take their class work on campus and will only have to travel to the school in which they are enrolled to take standardized tests.

This is a huge blessing for the children!

In time we hope to be able to grow the program further so that we can operate the school on campus for the benefit of the children.

Please pray that God will bless the children this school year as they daily engage in their studies on campus. Thank you!

Picking More Than A Peck Of Peppers

Tuesday, September 24th, 2019

Update from the El Oasis jalapeño farm

Thanks to the generous support of ICC family members we exceeded the matching grant offer to expand the Jalapeño crop at the El Oasis Children’s Village in Mexico. This has provided over $100,000 of capital for this important Agribusiness.

We are excited to announce that the harvest of Jalapeño peppers has begun. Not only has your support enabled us to triple the size of the field under cultivation this year, we’re also seeking to increase profitability by separating the peppers into various sizes and categories.

Better quality peppers can be sold for a higher price. To help with this, we’ve been able to borrow a conveyor belt which you can see in the picture below and in this video.

If all goes as planned, there will be several pickings during harvest season. One picking takes several days to complete.

The first picking should yield between 65–75 tons of peppers. With God’s blessing and good weather, the yield this season could be up to 1,000 tons! That’s a lot of peppers — and a huge means of support for the El Oasis project.

Please join with us in praying for this pepper project. And thank you for your ongoing support in helping us develop sustaining industries which will bless the children for years to come!

The Impact Of Your Support

Tuesday, September 17th, 2019

An interview with Huridis Fortuna, one of ICC’s grown children

} By Makala James

Huridis’ life changed forever when he came to live at Las Palmas Children’s Village in the Dominican Republic.

He flourished, earned his degree in Theology, married the love of his life, Hannah, and is now serving in ministry and sharing the Gospel

I recently had the opportunity to speak with Huridis about his experience growing up as an ICC kid.

A special thank you to Huridis for sharing his story about his experience at Las Palmas! God will continue to use Huridis in wonderful ways, just as He is working in the lives of all ICC children. Makala James [left] sits with Huridis Fortuna [right] in Keen, Texas. Makala had the opportunity to speak with Huridis about his life before, and while, Huridis was growing up at the Las Palmas Children’s Village.

Makala James [left] sits with Huridis Fortuna [right] in Keen, Texas. Makala had the opportunity to speak with Huridis about his life before, and while, Huridis was growing up at the Las Palmas Children’s Village.

Did you have a difficult childhood before coming to the Las Palmas Children’s Village?

I had a rough childhood. There is an illustration that I use in my sermons.

How do you purify gold? It’s with fire. It’s a hard and long process, but in the end what you get is fine, pure gold. Whatever happened in my life as a child, I see as a blessing. God used that to make me the person I am today.

What do you remember of your first day at Las Palmas?

My first day at the orphanage, I arrived with a little backpack, a pair of pants, a pair of socks, and a shirt. That’s all I brought because I had nothing else.

The director said, “Where are your clothes?” She was surprised that I didn’t have anything. After meeting my teacher and classmates, we went to the warehouse and got a bunch of clothes and shoes. I got a pillow that is kind of like a race car, and I still keep that with me today.

Then, I heard that everyone at the church and village had been praying for me. They did not know me, but everyone was praying for me to get there. I was amazed!

How did the children’s village affect your spiritual life?

Certainly, it made a big impact on my life. I still remember how, to wake us up, the dad of the house would play Christian music in the living room. That would be the time for us to gather around the table for worship.

We would sing songs, study the bible, pray, and have worship together as a family. That helped me have a deeper relationship with Jesus. Not only that, but we were also encouraged to have our own personal time reading the bible and praying.

After you finished worship, what was a typical day like?

On a typical day in high school, which was the best time, we would wake up in the morning to have worship together. Then we would do our chores, such as cleaning the bathroom or bedroom or yard… Whatever was assigned to us.

Afterwards, we would get ready for school and eat breakfast. Breakfast might be yucca with cheese or plantains and eggs, maybe cereal, fruit, and milk.

We attended school, and then came home around lunch time. After an hour break for lunch, then we had two hours of work, required of everybody.

After work I would either do homework or go to music school to practice the cello. In the evening, we had dinner and evening worship as a family.

Did you always stay in the same family?

I stayed with the same family for my whole time at the orphanage until I turned 18. That year we separated from the younger children, but still remained in the same family.

I helped the younger kids with their homework and chores at home. We moved to a bigger house because the house we were living in was kind of small. It was the same family all the time.

Tell me about an ICC sibling to whom you still feel close?

Alexandra! When I first arrived at the orphanage we used to fight and argue. Now we are really good friends. She came to my wedding two years ago when I got married. She’s coming to visit again, and we keep in touch.

How does having an advanced education impact your life?

It certainly makes a difference when you get an education. Seeing it from a professional point of view, we live in a competitive world.

If you have no education, then you are behind. It’s really hard for you to find a job and survive.

Because of my education, I am able to serve and support ICC, to give back to the place that helped me to become who I am.

Share a bit about when you felt called to ministry?

When I look back to my childhood and to what I’ve been through in my life, how God rescued me from what I could have been, it’s like a calling. It’s like God telling me, “I want you for a special mission.”

That helps me to understand that I’ve been called for something special. Once I was at [Las Palmas], I kept growing in my faith and in my relationship with Jesus. I participated in church and everybody used to call me pastorcito, which means little pastor.

I didn’t want to be pastor, because, honestly, I was afraid! But I grew up and felt called in many ways. I realized, God can use my life and story.

How did your life change when you were accepted into the ICC family?

It was a big change. I got my education and things that I needed right there. For me, it was all I ever wanted. It was my family.

I understand that you and your wife sponsor a child. Can you tell me about that?

We do! Actually, we’re in the process of getting a second one. We visited our sponsorship child. He was really happy when we went to see him. When we got home, we wrote a letter and sent a photo to him of all of us.

When you were a child, did it matter when sponsors wrote you or sent you pictures?

It’s very important to write to the children. I felt special when a sponsor wrote me. I felt I was connecting with my sponsor. It was easier to reply to that person, especially when they’d sent me pictures and asked me questions.

How do the ICC children who are now adults relate to the children’s village?

We have a group of generation that comes together like an alumni association, and there’s a president. We gather money and donations to take to the children’s village. We come together at Christmas, and put on a Christmas program. Recently, we raised funds for school shoes.

Why is it important to do these things for the kids?

I went there and I received help. Once I grew up, I realized how important it was that someone helped me, that someone raised money for me to eat and go to school. It’s heart touching to do the same for those children who are also in need.

 

 

Transforming Congo Orphans Lives Thanks To You!

Tuesday, August 13th, 2019

This is Julian. This is a photo taken just after he arrived at the Patmos Children’s Village in the D.R. Congo.

Your generous outpouring of support for the newly arrived orphan children in the D.R. Congo is truly amazing!

Thanks to you, the 59 little ones have been rescued and are on a pathway of recovery, much like the children who arrived a little over a year earlier.

Those children, 31 in all, arrived in the Fall of 2017 to ICC’s Patmos Children’s Village.

They have overcome so much physical and emotional suffering, and you’ve given them literally a new life.

Julian and Marc are just two examples of the wonderful transformations that have taken place during the past year.

This is Julian. This is a recent picture showing how much he has improved and transformed directly because of your support.

Julian was on the brink of death when he arrived at the Patmos Children’s Village.

His condition was nearly hopeless because of the wretched conditions in which he lived prior to arriving at Patmos.

He suffered from severe malnutrition because of the lack of adequate nourishment. He was ill, and his body was swollen.

Most likely, Julian would have died had he not been taken into the ICC family in the D.R. Congo.

Health workers treated Julian, and he was given a diet rich in vitamins. Gradually, his condition improved. He was able to join other children in the nursery school at Patmos.

Julian has made tremendous progress. His infections smile is a testimony to the transformation made possible through your support.

This is Marc. The photo on the left was taken just after he arrived at the Patmos Children’s Village in the D.R. Congo.Marc was severely malnourished when he came to Patmos. The Patmos staff were concerned his condition being so serious that he might die on the spot.

He was not able to eat. He was very ill, and his skin was turning pale — a sign of lack of blood flow.

He was not able to stand up or sit. He wanted only to sleep and was upset if anyone woke him up.

Marc was prescribed medicines to treat his various illnesses and was put on a diet designed to meet his needs.

From the time he was given the medical care and diet that he needed, Marc’s health and hope for survival started changing for the best. The transformation was dramatic, for within two months, Marc was able to laugh.

This is Marc. This is a recent picture showing how much Marc has transformed and improved because of your support.Compared to when he arrived, Marc is in good health, even though he is still under the watchful care of the health providers.

Marc has been able to join the other children in the nursery school. His teacher says that he is among her best students!

What an amazing transformation God has orchestrated through His loving caregivers and through ICC’s family of supporters!

What wonderful plans He must have, not only for Julian and Marc, but for all the orphans within ICC’s care.

During the past eighteen months many newly-orphanded children have joined the ICC family in the D.R. Congo. The life-long work of transformation and restoration is just beginning for each of these kids. Thank you for all you are doing to provide for these children.

Your faithful support is vital to their transformation. We are confident that God will continue to work through your generosity to bless “His Kids!”

Latest News About New Kids At Patmos

Tuesday, July 16th, 2019

Current info about newly arrived orphans in DR Congo

You take the Bible mandate to provide for orphan children seriously.

Though you may not be able to personally tend to the 59 newly-arrived orphans in the DR Congo, your prayers and financial gifts are vital. They help provide for the daily needs of the children.

As reported last month, the rescue mission for the kids was successful. The process of restoration continues. Your gifts are what make it possible for the Patmos staff to be the hands, feet, and heart of Jesus for these children.

The documentation needed to assign sponsors for these children will take time to receive.

However, if you would like to sponsor one of these children, please contact Alanna at 800–422–7729. She’ll let you know when you’ll be able to sponsor these children.

Thank you for your prayers in behalf of these children and their caregivers.

Once Upon A Time In Mexico

Tuesday, July 2nd, 2019

Three stories about your impact at El Oasis

While Mexican authorities apprehend unaccompanied migrant children, ICC works even harder to become a safe-haven for kids.
by William Hurtado

Last month I traveled to ICC’s El Oasis Children’s Village in Mexico and fell in love with the people, the place and the mission.

Two hours southeast of Ensenada, the road brought me to Valle de la Trinidad. It was near Valle that El Oasis began 21 years ago.

The 100-acre campus is home to a small Adventist community that is doubling up its mission for Jesus and for kids. Let me tell you about several of the people I met.


Marcos manages the farm at the El Oasis Children’s Village in Baja Norte, Mexico. Marcos has been farming in the local region around El Oasis for 25 years. He’s helping your donations to El Oasis go further by bringing in the yearly jalapeño crop. The jalapeños are then sold at market. The proceeds f rom the jalapeño sales are then used to help offset the expenses of caring for the children.

Marcos manages the farm at the El Oasis Children’s Village in Baja Norte, Mexico. Marcos has been farming in the local region around El Oasis for 25 years. He’s helping your donations to El Oasis go further by bringing in the yearly jalapeño crop. The jalapeños are then sold at market. The proceeds from the jalapeño sales are then used to help offset the expenses of caring for the children

Marcos is a successful farm manager and Christian family man. He’s been farming in the local area around El Oasis for 25 years.

He is helping your donations go even further by creating a self-sustaining jalapeño micro-industry that can supplement the children’s financial needs.

By the end of July he and the team of workers will harvest the 50 acres of jalapeño plants.

Two generous benefactors helped pay for the farm’s tractor. Others have donated funds for a fumigator and a plow.
$3000 is still needed for a disc and a harrow. This is where you can help. Your special donation will be a blessing to El Oasis. The children, staff, and farm workers look to you for support.
And as an added blessing, an ICC family member is offering a matching grant for funds donated to the El Oasis farm. It’s an excellent time to double your support for “His Kids.”

Claudia Escamilla and her husband Juan. Claudia is the assistant children’s services director at the El Oasis Children’s Village in Baja Norte, Mexico

Claudia Escamilla and her husband Juan. Claudia is the assistant children’s services director at the El Oasis Children’s Village in Baja Norte, Mexico

Claudia and JuanClaudia Escamilla is a Human Services Specialist and the assistant children’s services director.

Claudia studied Behavioral Science at Canadian Adventist University through an educational sponsorship. She also received a Master’s in public health at Montemorelos.

In 2007 she began working at ICC’s children’s village in El Salvador. In 2016 she returned with her husband Juan to her native México to minister to the children at El Oasis.

Both Claudia and Juan are committed to being your heart and hands in México.


Josue with one of the goats for which he cares at El Oasis.

Josue with one of the goats for which he cares at El Oasis.

Josue arrived at El Oasis as a baby. 19 years later, he still needs his ICC family to guide him into adulthood.

While I was there, he took me to a goat pen where he kept a mother goat and her two kids. He picked up one of the kids and lovingly held it in his arms.

As he talked about them, I could see his face glowing with pride for “His Kids.” I asked Josue if ICC loved and cared for him in the same way that he cared for his goats. He smiled and said, “Si.”

It is through your loving support that Josue and the other children at El Oasis have a chance in life.


El Oasis is a beautiful Adventist orphan care facility. Through the years it has had its challenges but now, the Holy Spirit is blowing a new wind of energy and growth.

Will you pray with me that the El Oasis story will continue to new chapters of growth and blessing for children in need?

While we may not be able to minister to every displaced child in México, of those God does bring to us we will do our best to love and care for them. Thank you once again for your partnership in this ministry.