Monday, 28 December 2009

Hope Centre Christmas Party 2009:

The Hope Centre kids, with 72 other local kids from the surrounding homes enjoyed a wonderful Christmas dinner on Christmas Day.  Most of the families around Mutimbuzi near Bujumbura are refugee returnees from Congo and Tanzania and so are extremely poor.   For some years Mission International has provided The BIG Meal for the children of what is now the Hope Centre, however now that the children have UK sponsors provision is made for a Christmas party.   The sponsors donate a small pool of money which can be used for the Christmas party.   This year Pastor Leonard invited some of the poorest kids from the area who came along and enjoyed the meal with the Hope Centre kids making it a very special day for them all.

Saturday, 19 December 2009

Plan for sustainability:
Part of the plan for sustainability at the Hope Centre is that the whole family learn and work together to build up income generating projects so that they will not me reliant on Mission International forever.   The children are not being allowed just to sit expecting to be looked after for the rest of their lives, no, they are being trained to be responsible and they are learning new skills all of the time.

"Train up a child..."
A good example of this kind of training is the small agricultural project which has been set up within the grounds of the Hope Centre complex where the children can get involved in producing some food for them selves.   Small gardens of cabbages and onions etc. are now producing food for the whole family.

"A little child shall lead them..."
Even the little ones are able to do something, here they are checking out which are the biggest onions and ready for harvest, and then they can have a go at pulling them up and carrying them back to the house for use or for sale in the market.

Friday, 11 December 2009

Fragile but encouraging:

House four is on its way to completion at the Hope Centre in Burundi.   The country is a peace for the first time in 14 years and life is beginning to hold some hope for the children.   The pictures show the children getting on with some chores around the compound.   Clearing up and sweeping the area surrounding the homes.   Children who have lost everything including every member of their family can now see the opportunities that lie before them.   It is important for them to learn how to look after themselves.   It is important that they learn skills for self sustaining life.   Mission international may not be around forever.   Pastor leonard and the workers at the Hope Centre have received the message that no-one at the can expect to be looked after all of their lives.   There is work to be done, there is a country to rebuild, there is afuture to look forward to.

Of course chores are not the only agenda for the children.   Some have school work to do, homework and projects or assignments to work on and so life is never dull.

Please continue to pray for this large and extended family.   National elections are coming up in July 2010, these times can be worrying in a fragile democracy such as in vogue in Burundi.   Many political factions hope to draw young people into conflict and civil unrest as they try to gain power and influence in government.   Please pray that none of the youth in Burundi are deceived by those bent on violence and bloodshed.