Posts Tagged ‘Village’

Your Gifts Saved Jacob’s Life

Tuesday, December 3rd, 2019

A matching grant doubles your extra gift till December 31.

Dear Friend of the Children,

This is Jacob. You saved his life.

This is Jacob. You saved his life.

God continues to bless “His Kids” through your kind and generous support.

Before I share Jacob’s story and a holiday update, I’m excited to tell you that some of our dedicated family members have offered a special matching challenge.

From now until December 31, your gift can be doubled to provide even more of a blessing for the children. Please take advantage of this opportunity, and thank you for all you continue to do for the children. YOU are truly a blessing!

This challenge is also to give a little extra — a bit more than you would otherwise give. Please mark this extra gift as “Matching Challenge.” Thank you so much!

I can’t overemphasize or even dramatize the impact you have on the children. When I visit the ICC children’s villages, I see first-hand the transformations that are taking place in the lives of the children. Your support makes these transformations possible.

Smiles on little faces that were once cloudy with fear and suspicion.

Confidence to interact appropriately with others rather than hide in the shadows.

Of course, there’s more than just emotional transformations. Physical transformations are taking place as the children grow healthy and strong from good nutrition, exercise, and medical care.

There are mental transformations, too, as our campus schools provide stimulating learning experiences for the children.

Thank you for supporting the life-transforming ministry on behalf of ICC children.

Thank you for supporting the life-transforming ministry on behalf of ICC children.

Yet the best of all transformations take place when an ICC child is “born again.” I recently received word that two of our teenage girls in Romania made a public demonstration of their commitment to God by being baptized.

This thrills my heart! They were little children when they came to us. And through the years, your support enabled us to provide the nurturing care they needed. And now that they are old enough, they are also wise enough to decide to follow Jesus as their Savior.

This Christmas I praise God for the decision of these girls and others within our ICC family who have been baptized and are waiting and watching for the coming of Jesus — just as wise men of long ago did!

Your support enabled us to grow the Las Palmas herd to over 100 cows!

Your support enabled us to grow the Las Palmas herd to over 100 cows!

This year, your support has enabled us to expand efforts to develop and strengthen sustaining industries. I’m pleased to let you know that “Milky’s Challenge” has been a success. This campaign was developed to help raise funds for the Las Palmas Dairy. Through the support of many, the dairy herd has grown to over 100 head of cows!

We’ve been contacted by the Rica Group, a large food company in the Dominican Republic. They process milk among other products. Not only will they purchase Las Palmas milk, but they will also help our dairy industry enabling you to provide even more support for the children. We see God’s potential leading in this endeavor!

The pepper farm project at the El Oasis Children’s Village continues to gain momentum as it provides funds to help operate the El Oasis project for children

The pepper farm project at the El Oasis Children’s Village continues to gain momentum as it provides funds to help operate the El Oasis project for children

In Mexico, we are completing the harvest of Jalapeño peppers. This has been another excellent year for this crop. The production remained strong even though the market price was lower than anticipated.

At the end of the season, for the second year in a row, we saw God intervene when a killing frost crept over the valley where the El Oasis campus is located. All the other farmers in the valley except our close neighbor lost their crop, but God saved ours so we could harvest more peppers.

The growth and potential of this industry can be seen in the fact that for the first time, an ICC project was able to send support to another project! Additional agri-businesses are being explored at other ICC projects. Thank you for the support you give that enables us to help these projects become more self-sustaining.

Your support of ICC children in the past has enabled them to “pay your support forward” and bless their younger “siblings.” Many of our ICC children return as adults to the same children’s village in which they grew up. They help to share in the care of the children.

Of particular note are two of our former children who for the past couple of years have served as business manager and director of children’s services for the Sweet Home Children’s Village in India.

Because our director there had a medical emergency that required treatment in the US, Udai, our business manager, was asked to take on the management role in the director’s absence.

Both Udai and Nirmala have taken their work very seriously and have done an excellent job of managing the operations of the children’s village. It’s wonderful to see dedicated young people giving back in gratitude for what they were given!

Your support enables ICC children to learn in an environment appropriate for their ability and needs.

Your support enables ICC children to learn in an environment appropriate for their ability and needs.

My parents, Ken and Alcyon Fleck, had no way of imagining how the work of ICC would grow and develop through the years.

Back in the late ’70s, they set out to help a few orphan children in Guatemala. Over the past four decades, the number of children who call or who have called

ICC home and family have grown to well over 4,000! That’s a big family of children, many of whom are now raising families of their own!

In October I had the privilege of attending the 40-year anniversary celebration of the opening of the Los Pinos Children’s Village in Guatemala.

It was thrilling to spend several days of celebrations at Los Pinos. There were many of our kids, who are independent now, who came with their families. Also, there were former parents, teachers, and administration. What a joy to listen to the stories of how God has led through the years.

Manuel (right) and his family attended the 40th anniversary celebration at the Los Pinos Children’s Village. His life story was depicted in a video created by the current staff and children.

Manuel (right) and his family attended the 40th-anniversary celebration at the Los Pinos Children’s Village. His life story was depicted in a video created by the current staff and children.

The kids and staff put together a video reenacting the story of Manuel, one of the first-generation kids, who is now a pastor and was there with his family.

We were all so moved to tears by his story and how God brought him to Los Pinos after his parents were killed by rebel soldiers; how he grew to know Jesus and studied to become a pastor.

Manual, with tears, got up and said this was the best video he had ever seen. He brought all the “actors” to the platform and personally thanked them for doing the video.

Afterwards, as we stood around and talked about this with Manuel and others, Sharon commented, with emotion choking her voice, “That story was so real that we saw today, and it was the reality that started ICC 40 years ago — a reality that so many of these kids went through who are adults today. Now, the situation in Guatemala is different — not the civil war that existed back then, but the poverty and sinfulness that still causes so much suffering with the children.”

But then she paused and said, “Now we are seeing that same reality being faced and lived out in the lives of many little children today in other countries such as in Congo where we recently took in 59 little children five years old and under! Those precious little ones just recently experienced this same reality of war and unimaginable violence at such a young and vulnerable age. God help us to find the means to help them!”

Yes, this year we saw the ICC family of children grow by 59 in an instant. We were challenged by the urgent call from the D.R. Congo that these newly-orphaned children needed our immediate intervention.

We counted on your support to provide for the children and stepped out in faith believing that God would move upon the hearts of our ICC family members to include these children, too, at the “ICC family table.” And yes, you came through with the support that was needed to provide for the initial care of the children. On behalf of these children, thank you very much!

“As you have done it unto one of the least of these, you have done it unto Me.” Matthew 25:40

“As you have done it unto one of the least of these, you have done it unto Me.” Matthew 25:40

We’ve been challenged with creating the profiles of the children whose identities and background information are difficult to track since their parents were massacred and the children are so very young.

But I have good news! We are now finally able to assign sponsors to at least some of these new children! This will mean so much to them and aid in their transformations. Would You like to sponsor one of these special little kids?

Speaking yet again of transformations, I want to include the following incident in this letter.

Many of you know our ICC sponsorship supervisor, Alanna Jones. She recently shared the following account of what happened to her when she received the picture of Jacob, who had arrived at the Congo Patmos Children’s Village in 2017.

You must realize that Alanna has served the children of ICC for 11 years. During that time, she has seen many of the pictures of the new children who arrive at “ICC’s front door.” But Jacob’s picture touched her deeply. Here’s how she described it:

Jacob arrived at the Patmos Children’s Village in 2017. He was very close to death. Your gifts saved and transformed his life.

Jacob arrived at the Patmos Children’s Village in 2017. He was very close to death. Your gifts saved and transformed his life.

“I felt my heart clutch when I saw Jacob’s picture. He appeared to me to be very near death, and he was so skinny.

His little legs looked like bones with a thin layer of skin pulled tight. He looked like he would not be able to even lift his head a little bit. And the blank look in his eyes was haunting — frightening.

“I have a 2-year-old grandson, and I started to imagine how horrible it would be if he were suddenly on his own with no way to eat or care for himself. I had to stop myself from these thoughts because it was terrifying.

Jacob was someone’s baby at one point. How would they feel if they knew how badly he was doing? Their precious tiny boy. I did not assign any sponsors to him because I was afraid that he was not going to make it. I didn’t want a sponsor to know that kind of heartache if he did pass.

Jacob’s transformation is a testament to what you can do by providing nurturing care and love through your gifts.

Jacob’s transformation is a testament to what you can do by providing nurturing care and love through your gifts.

“When the latest set of pictures arrived on my desk recently, I saw his name on the label on the back of his picture before I saw his face. I think I may have cheered out loud. I know I did in my head. OH! YAY! Jacob!

“He looks so healthy now. He has put on some weight, has cute round cheeks and a darling smile. I was so excited and impressed by his improvement that I printed his first picture and the newest picture and kept them on my desk for a few weeks. I just kept looking at them trying to believe it was actually the same sweet boy.

“I always feel very honored to be able to work at ICC, to have the privilege of seeing the children and reading their stories of how they came to be in our care and to be a small part of helping them get the support they need. I especially felt this honor and happiness when Jacob’s new picture arrived.

“Sponsors get to know a few children — but I get to see all of them. That to me is a privilege. I am thankful that Alcyon responded to the call so many years ago and that ICC is still operating and saving children’s lives.”

You make transformations like this possible! And now, through the end of the year, your EXTRA gift of love and support can be doubled — literally transformed — to be twice the blessing for children like Jacob.

That’s right! Because there are children like Jacob who desperately need the nurturing care that ICC provides, some of our faithful supporters have stepped forward to challenge you to match their gifts. You can now double any special EXTRA donation you give until December 31 or until a total amount of $100,000 is reached. Please mark your gift, “Matching Challenge.”

The reality is that this Christmas we depend upon the generosity of ICC family members to change the reality for all these children. Close to a quarter of the funds needed to support ICC’s mission for children is given in December. If that doesn’t happen, how will we provide a place of healing and transformation for children like Jacob? And there are so many more children who need the nurturing care in which ICC specializes. At this time of year, budgets are stretched taking care of children who have already found their place within the ICC family.

So, wherever the need is greatest, your gift brings help — and hope!

The world has little use for orphan children. After all, what can they contribute? I believe there is a real counterpoint that can be said for the mission of ICC. Once an orphan child receives the nurturing care needed, he or she has such great capacity to contribute and to pay forward the support given. That transformation is what makes this ministry worthwhile!

And YOUR support tells the children…

“I care for you. I believe in you. I want to help you!”

Please — Use This Link — to make your gift today.

On behalf of ICC’s worldwide family of children, caregivers and support staff, thank-you for the blessing you are this Christmas!

In His Service,

 

 

Rick Fleck
President

P.S. To take advantage of year-end-tax benefits, please respond by December 31. And to take part in the matching challenge, please respond as quickly as possible! Thank you!

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.

Putting On Love With Special Dresses

Tuesday, July 9th, 2019

Girls at Las Palmas have been gifted hand-made Sabbath dresses

Two of the girls from Las Palmas with their hand-made Sabbath dresses

Orphan children don’t have much of this world’s goods when they arrive at an ICC children’s village. Often, they have only the clothes they are wearing.

Two of the girls from Las Palmas with their hand-made Sabbath dressesImagine how a little orphan girl feels when she is given several sets of clothing that include a special Sabbath dress.

The most recent recipients of these special dresses are the girls from the Las Palmas children’s village in the Dominican Republic. The happy faces in these pictures tell of the positive impact of these dresses.

Those dresses are the craftsmanship of Rebecca Loveless and her team of volunteers. Rebecca created a ministry called “Clothed with Love” to make these dresses for the girls. Rebecca was inspired by Colossians 3:14, “But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.”

Four of the girls from Las Palmas with their hand-made Sabbath dresses“I wanted to create a dress for the girls, the orphans, to symbolize them being clothed with love,” said Rebecca. “For them to know how special and valuable they are, how precious they are to Jesus, and how much they are loved.”

Rebecca and her team continue their work of blessing ICC children. They are currently working to provide dresses for girls at ICC’s largest project — the Patmos Children’s Village in the DR Congo.

Thank you, Rebecca, the volunteer seamstresses and all our ICC family for your loving support of the children!

Five of the girls from Las Palmas with their hand-made Sabbath dresses.

You Made Christmas 2018 Memorable for His Kids

Tuesday, February 19th, 2019

“For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given…” Isaiah 9:6

In a very real sense, the ICC family has been given very special children. We believe that Jesus entrusts these children to us so we can be His guardians to care for them and teach them about Him.

And there’s no better time to do that than at Christmas. Christmas is one of the most special occasions at ICC children’s villages around the world. Your contributions, especially to the gift fund, help to make this a memorable time for all the children.

Christmas 2018 at the Hogar Escuela Adventista Children’s Village in El Salvador.

Christmas 2018 at the Hogar Escuela Adventista Children’s Village in El Salvador.

These pictures sent from Guatemala and El Salvador show some of the decorations and programing from their special celebrations during the recent holiday.

Christmas 2018 at the Las Palmas Children’s in Guatemala.

Christmas 2018 at the Los Pinos Children’s Village in Guatemala.

Thanks to your support, the children had a wonderful time of family togetherness, sharing, gift giving and most importantly, remembering Jesus, God’s most precious gift.

Thank you for helping to make these celebrations possible.

Christmas 2018 at the Los Pinos Children’s Village in Guatemala.

Christmas 2018 at the Los Pinos Children’s Village in Guatemala.

Caring For The King

Tuesday, January 1st, 2019
In the person of “The least of these”

“Then shall the King say unto them… I was Hungry…
Thirsty… a Stranger… Naked… Sick… in Prison and…”

By Kent Greve

Three-year-old Elisa needs help!

When Elisa was brought to the Las Palmas children’s village in the Dominican Republic, she was hungry, sick and in desperate need of a stable family to provide the loving care she needs. Here is her story:

Because of a self-destructive lifestyle, Elisa’s mother can’t provide care for her or any of Elisa’s siblings. The children have different fathers.

Sadly, Elisa’s mother is in an advanced stage of tuberculosis and may not survive.

“Sick… and you visited me”

Government officials concerned about Elisa’s situation, intervened and asked us to accept Elisa into the ICC family. Before doing so, our village director, Samilin, insisted that Elisa have a medical evaluation. Elisa tested positive for tuberculosis but does not have it nor is she contagious.

“A stranger… and you took me in”

After much careful consideration and prayer, Samilin agreed to accept Elisa if she would be given the proper treatment protocol. Samilin has taken Elisa to a pediatric immunologist. She is receiving the proper medical protocols to protect the other children.

“Hungry, thirsty, naked… and you gave me food, water, and clothing”

When Elisa arrived, she suffered from malnutrition. Immediately the Las Palmas staff went to work providing her with food and clothing as well as water to drink and for bathing. In a short while, Elisa looked and felt much better.

Though her road to recovery may be long and her future is uncertain, one thing is certain: with the loving support of generous ICC family like you, Elisa has an opportunity now to heal both physically and emotionally.

“In Prison… and you came unto me”

Unlike most prisoners, orphan children like Elisa are innocent victims held captive by circumstances far beyond their control. Yet the shackles of poverty, abuse and neglect are very real.

ICC’s mission is to come to visit these children, to release the chains that bind them and free them — giving them hope for the future. This is a special rescue mission in which the entire ICC family is privileged to take part.

Can you see that, in a unique sense, the orphan child fits every one of the descriptions of “the least of these” that Jesus spoke about in Matthew 25?

The orphan is a stranger that needs to be taken in and released from the prison of poverty, abuse and neglect.

The orphan is hungry, thirsty, naked, and wearing only the clothes he or she has. And yes, many children like Elisa are sick.

When you support an orphan child, you are demonstrating not only a special kind of love for one of Jesus’ children in need, you are demonstrating your love for Jesus Himself.

What a blessing for the children! And what a blessing for you! As we begin this new year, let’s renew our determination to answer Jesus’ call to serve Him by serving “the least of these.”

On behalf of the children within the ICC family, thank you for your generous support. Have a happy and blessed new year!

Give A Child A New Home

Tuesday, December 4th, 2018

December 1, 2018

Dear Friend,

You can give a child a place to belong. A gift sent by December 31 will be doubled through a matching grant

Everyone wants to feel that they belong — that they have a special place where they fit in, where they are loved and accepted for who they are.

This is especially true at Christmas. Our hearts go out to those who must spend the holiday alone. It just doesn’t seem right.

This need for belongingness makes the plight of orphan children so desperate. An orphan child is set adrift on the stormy sea of life with

no sail, no rudder, no anchor.

The orphan child needs help from outside. But will that help come? And will that help come from you?

During the last 40 years, many of you have joined ICC in providing children like Sarita (see story on second page) and thousands of other children like her with not only the basics of life, like food and shelter, but, just as important, we have been providing orphan children with “a place to belong!”

Of all the important elements of effective orphan care, this is one of the most important. And it is making a difference in the lives of orphan children like Sarita. Here’s her story.

Sarita’s mother died when she was very little. She was left in the care of her older sisters and her father. When her father disappeared, the sisters turned her over to an orphanage for girls run by Catholic nuns. Sarita stayed there until one Christmas when one of her sisters came and picked her up for the holiday.

Because of you Sarita has a new home

Sarita never returned to that orphanage. Her two sisters then took turns caring for her and sometimes had others taking care of her. But she would be given back to them because her sisters didn’t pay what they promised.

Passed around, neglected, abused.

Sarita desperately needed a loving place to belong! Fortunately God intervened, and she was brought to the Los Pinos Children’s Village in Guatemala where she found a home within the ICC family. Here is how Sarita described what happened.

“[The authorities] took me to this place because I ran away from the house where I was living. One of my sisters left me in the house of a lady that she was going to pay to take care of me. My sister started making the payments, but, little by little, she stopped paying, until one day she never returned. The lady started to mistreat me.”

This Christmas, Sarita has a place to belong within her loving and nurturing family at Los Pinos. Generous ICC family members like you make her belongingness possible.

Sarita still has many challenges ahead as she learns to trust those who provide for her care. That is why it is very important this Christmas that her ICC family continues to provide for the support that she and other children like her need.

And right now, you can participate in a special Christmas Matching Challenge. These funds will help children like Sarita to have the one thing they need the most this Christmas — “a place to belong!”

That’s right. Because every child needs “a place to belong” one of our loyal donors has stepped forward to challenge you to match their gift. You can now double any donation you give until December 31 or until a total amount of $50,000 is reached.

The reality is that this Christmas, we depend upon the generosity of ICC family members. About 22% of funds needed to support ICC’s mission for children is given in December.

If that doesn’t happen, it restricts our ability to provide a place to belong for children like Sarita. And there are so many more children who need the nurturing care in which ICC specializes.

At this time of year, budgets are stretched taking care of children who have already found their place to belong. So, wherever the need is greatest, your gift brings help — and hope!

The world tells orphans, “You don’t belong!” But your gift will tell them

“I care”          “I want you to belong”          “I will help you.”

It was because God loved the world so much that he sent His Son to earth so that we could experience a sense of belonging as part of His eternal family. I pray that because of your support, orphan children will come to know and experience their Heavenly Father’s love as well. For Sarita, and for all the children, this will be the ultimate experience in belonging!

Please, make your gift today!.

On behalf of the children, thank you for blessing them this Christmas!

In His Service,

Rick Fleck

 

 

 

Rick Fleck
President

P.S. To take advantage of year-end-tax benefits please respond before December 31. And to make sure your gift is matched, helping twice as many children in need, please respond as quickly as possible! Thank you!

Thankful For You This Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 6th, 2018
By Kent Greve

The thankful receiver bears a plentiful harvest

The words above from English poet, William Blake, serve as an excellent reminder of the importance of living with a heart filled with gratitude.

How grateful are the children of ICC, most of whom have been given a second opportunity in life to experience the security and happiness of a loving family!

ICC children bear testimony that a “thankful receiver bears a bountiful harvest.” On their behalf, thank you for investing in them!

During the past 40 years of serving orphan children, the ICC family has been able to experience many a happy harvest when children leave our care and are able to live successfully on their own.

As Thanksgiving in the U.S. approaches it’s important that we share a collective word of thanks for all that you have done and continue to do to bring hope and healing to the children.

God is working through you to bless and provide for children like Fernando, Eshana and Victor. Because of your faithful support, these children continue to live within a loving family at an ICC children’s village. Here are their stories:

Thirteen-year-old Fernando doesn’t know who his father is. His mother struggled with alcohol addiction. She had difficulty providing appropriate care for Fernando, and eventually, the child protection authorities intervened and brought him to the Los Pinos Children’s Village where he joined the ICC family.

Before and after pictures of Fernando

Fernando

Fernando continues to make positive progress within his ICC family. He treats his parents and siblings well and does his part in helping the campus chicken industry by assisting with vaccinations, washing the drinking fountains and removing the chicken manure.

Eshana’s father died of Tuberculosis in 2013. Her mother is blind and unable to provide care for her. Eshana had been living in a tribal community, and the ICC children’s village in India was quite different for her.

Before and after photos of Eshana

Eshana

However, Eshana has adapted well to her new surroundings, and thanks to the loving care you have helped to provide for her, she is doing well. She is respectful of her elders, gets along well with her peers and is diligent in her studies

Victor never knew his parents. His grandmother was taking care of him and his younger brother and sister. They lived in a thatched roof house in the forest in the DR Congo until the war came to their village.

Then they had to move around to try to keep safe. Eventually they were attacked, and the children were separated from their grandmother.

Before and After Photos of Victor

Victor

Victor eventually made it to a refugee camp. He was moved to several different camps. The conditions at the last camp he were so bad that he became very sick and exhausted. Without the strength to live, Victor waited to die. That’s when the Red Cross found him and brought him to ICC.

Fortunately for little Victor, he has found a loving home at the Patmos Children’s Village. He’s eight-years-old and has a special bond with his house mother. This is a big help to him as he continues to face challenges that may be expected of one so small and who has experienced such trauma and tragedy in his young life.

Please pray for Victor and other ICC children who struggle in the process of having their little lives rebuilt. What a blessing that they have loving caregivers and prayer warriors who intercede for them.

Fernando, Eshana and Victor are three of the many children who currently have a home and family because of your caring concern and generous support.

Again, this ministry would not be possible if it were not for you! Thank you for participating with us as we experience the joy of harvest past — and harvest to come. What a blessing you are to the children. Happy Thanksgiving!

P.S. The book of Acts gives this reminder to us. “In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” — Acts 20:35

As God has richly blessed you this year, please consider giving a special holiday gift to benefit the children who continue to need you so much. Thank you!

“Stepping Out In Faith” Matching Fund

Tuesday, November 28th, 2017

Just in Time to Bless the Children this Christmas!

’Tis better to give than to receive” is a truth that we all recognize. What is even better is when you give and that gift is doubled to make twice the impact! This Christmas, you have a wonderful opportunity to double your gift in support of a child like Eduardo who desperately wants and needs a home.

Please read on for more details

Dear Friend of the Children,

Eduardo’s father died without ever recognizing him as his son. His mother left Eduardo in the care of his sick grandmother who was also trying to care for her 18-year-old daughter who has special needs.

Eduardo’s living environment was unsafe, and he suffered several attempts of violation. The child protection authorities rescued Eduardo and needed a safe place for him, so they contacted the Las Palmas Children’s Village.

I’m reminded of the story of Jesus who was born in a stable because there was “no room in the inn.” Currently, several of our children’s villages DO HAVE ROOM for more children. You can help us welcome more children like Eduardo who need the safety and security of a loving home. This Christmas please consider giving the gift of family to an orphan child!

I have some terrific news to share. From now until December 31, 2017, your gift will be doubled, up to a total of $125,000. What a double blessing and impact your gift will be for the children!

In the past several weeks, 12 different children have experienced life-threatening events. These suffering children have been referred to us from authorities in Congo and the Dominican Republic.

Some of these 12 kids were already dying, and we were told that they would soon lose their lives if we did not accept them into our care. Horrible events took place leaving these children devastated without families. What were our administrators to do when these kids were placed at their door? Should they have turned their backs on these children, leaving them to die?

The thought of signing a child’s death warrant is something I cannot agree with, nor do I believe that God wants our ICC family to do that. I believe that God put ICC here to be the last harbor of refuge from these kinds of storms in the lives of the children — the storms that take their very lives. There must be another answer, and I believe the answer is the ICC family!

Recently, caring individuals provided for a special “Stepping out in Faith Matching Fund.”

Donations received (up to $125,000) will be matched and used to support the children of ICC, especially those who recently joined the ICC family or those on the outside just waiting to come in.

Your support for the children within the ICC family has meant a life-change for them. In some cases the saving of their lives.

Today, many children are brought to us by the local government, first responders, or relief workers who told us that if we did not take these kids, there was no one else who would, and they could perish.

Hearing this sends chills down my spine. That there is no other answer, and children may perish, is real and something we can’t tolerate.

With this in mind, I’m writing to you at the end of this year. There are children like Eduardo who need your help and protection. They need the life-saving and life-giving support that you offer. And since your gift will be doubled, it’s an especially good time to give!

Again, from now until December 31, you can have your donation matched up to a total of $125,000. A gift of $50 becomes $100. A gift of $250 becomes $500.

Should all the money be matched, it will be $250,000 bringing hope and healing to the lives of orphan children. What a blessing this will be for them!

Will you help me with this urgent need for these children who’ve been placed on our doorstep, which I believe was providential?

If you want your donation matched, please mark it “Stepping out in Faith.”

God bless you for stepping out in faith and saving the lives of the fatherless.

 

 

Doug Congleton
Executive Director

P.S. Thank you for your wonderful support to the children. And now through December 31st your support can be doubled through the “Stepping out in Faith Matching Fund.”

P.P.S. And since the overhead for this year has been covered, 100% of your donation plus the matched amount will go to support the program for children. Thank you for being a double blessing to the children here at the end of the year!

Pathfinders — A Blessing that You make Possible!

Tuesday, September 5th, 2017

Pathfinder programs that you make possible through your gifts are just one example of how your support is blessing ICC children.

Thank you for supporting the children so they can participate in the life-changing experiences of Pathfinders. This includes providing funds for uniforms and special activities like camporees.

What an amazing opportunity Pathfinder activities are for the children! These experiences will stay with them for a lifetime. On behalf of the children whose lives you touch with your generous support, thank you so very much.

“Thank you for supporting the children in the life-changing experiences of Pathfinders.”

In 2017, the SDA church in Inter-America organized a division-wide camporee in the Dominican Republic. Because of the cost and distance, the Los Pinos Pathfinder Club in Guatemala was not able to attend. However, the staff organized their own camporee-type activity with another local club that was newly formed and had never been to a camporee before.

Your support of Pathfinders gives the children an opportunity to learn important lessons and skills they can take with them through life.

Your support of Pathfinders gives the children an opportunity to learn important lessons and skills they can take with them through life.

The children participated in specialty classes (honors) that included Basic First Aid, Orienteering, Family Life, Cats, Trees and Shrubs, and Human Sexuality (taught by the new psychologist).

Other events included competitions, physical activities, spiritual activities, marching and an investiture. The children also had the opportunity to share their faith by traveling to the local town of Poptun to pass out books to people on the streets. According to Joel Carpio, Los Pinos director, “it was a great blessing, and our kids enjoyed sharing experiences with this new club.”

Since the Inter-American Division camporee was held in the Dominican Republic, the Las Palmas children had a great desire to participate. Your support made this possible, and the children had a wonderful time!

The Las Palmas children thank you for providing funds for uniforms and the opportunity to attend the recent camporee. What a blessing you are for the children!

The Las Palmas children thank you for providing funds for uniforms and the opportunity to attend the recent camporee. What a blessing you are for the children!

Marching is one of the highlights for any camporee. At this event, the march was done by zones or regions. Our Las Palmas kids were blessed to be selected to be part of the group in the exhibition march. According to Samilin, Las Palmas Director, they marched really well and were well received by the people from the other countries. Undoubtedly this was an experience which was unique and once in a lifetime for them.

Mealtime was quite unique because none of the Pathfinder clubs were allowed to cook in the camp area because so many people were attending (more than 10,000). Meals were prepared and brought in from another location. The children would get very hungry while waiting, but when the food finally arrived, they would give a lot of thanks to God for the food and all His blessings.

According to Samilin, the opening ceremonies were spectacular for the kids. They had never seen nor participated in an activity like that and were awestruck by the beauty and the many colorful lights from the fireworks. While this was happening, our club leader and chaplain, Kauri, was comparing this to what it might be like at Jesus’ second coming, when the whole heavens will open and be filled with angels ready to seek His children. The children marveled at this spectacle and shouted with joy that it was like it might be when Jesus comes. Kauri urged the children to prepare to be able to shout with joy and happiness when we see that spectacle.

Pathfinder activities provide the staff a special time to mentor the children.

Pathfinder activities provide the staff a special time to mentor the children.

The Las Palmas children very much enjoyed and appreciated the opportunity to experience this once in a lifetime event that you helped make possible for them. Here are words of appreciation from Samilin that she wrote especially for you:

Dear Donors,

I want to take this opportunity to thank you in a very special way for your generous donations which made it possible for one of the most beautiful dreams of these kids to come true — to be able to shine in their Pathfinder uniforms. This is one of the activities that they most enjoy, but at the same time it helps them in a very important way in their growth as persons academically and spiritually. They learn many useful things for their lives in the Club, and we can certainly say these experiences will go with them for the rest of their lives.

The experience that the kids had at the Inter-American Camporee was unforgettable. Thanks to God and the donations from our supporters and friends, our Pathfinders had the fun experience of sleeping in very good quality Coleman tents, and they got to participate in all the activities.

Thanking you with all my heart for your donations and the interest that you show to make it possible for our boys and girls to develop,

Sincerely yours,

Samilin Williams
Executive Director

— A Message of Concern From the President —

I’m concerned. I don’t worry that God can provide for His kids through this ministry. But I am human, and feel concern as I see that donations this year are running behind last year and budgets are not being met for our children’s villages. It might not seem that it would make much of an impact if you neglect to send a donation, or delay your support for a couple of months. But it all adds up and makes a big impact on the funds for our children.

So I pray that God will heal my concern and prove once again that He will provide for all His children, and that includes you, dear friend.

Rick Fleck