I’m just finishing up mailing our family Christmas/Hanukkah cards, determined to get them out before the New Year.  Feeling pretty good about that! They go in the mail tomorrow.

So, now, I’m taking a few minutes for a time of reflection and gratitude. I had cause to look back on an old Flickr account and discovered some photographs from Angel of Mercy in Cameroon when the construction of Serenity Homes was just underway.  I contrast that with the kids who live in the lovely home now and it truangelofmercykidsly warms my heart. It started with a vision, then vacant land, then red dirt honed by hand into bricks and today it’s a fully integrated home to 16 children affected by HIV/AIDS. What a joy to see the work we helped with come to fruition and kids having a safe place to grow up in.

The photos cause me to celebrate. It reminded me that the big and small gifts from a loving community of givers, each doing their part to remember the orphan, that makes these dreams into reality.  Those Flickr photos remind me of the supporter who created the iron bar winwindowforangelofmercy.jpgdow design that beautified the protective bars on the windows necessary for security in the dorm rooms in Cameroon. More recently, a Minnesota company donated time and talent to create a beautiful mosaic tile nameplate out of hand made mosaic tiles. Each tile touched with hands of love that would beautify the space where girls in Tanzanlindaparty8ia go to be refreshed. Then there’s the volunteer who never dreamed of being a fundraiser, pulling off a great house to house event with a small group of loving people who helped in a big way. And even the volunteer studying abroad who tried to coordinate time schedules to continue helping the orphans have safety, shelter and sustainability. For these gifts I am grateful!

Please don’t ever think what you do is ‘nothing.’ To us, it’s everything. There are so many ways to show the orphans we remember them, and know this: It takes only a little to make a big impact! Each one of us has a gift to give. These are just a few and as we always say, “We can’t do it all, but we can all do something.”

Looking forward to 2019, we are going deeper and wider still. Our partners need funds to complete projeIMG_20180330_170054cts and others will have new ones online soon.  We also continue  establishing a solid foundation for sustainability. This is what we require of our partners, and we require it of ourselves as well. We seek partner donors to help with projects, but also a select few who designate investments into the organization’s longevity. Our primary reason for existence is providing safety, shelter and sustainability and are planning for the long-term.

Looking back on this work, just reviewing our website and the current and complete projects astounds me. I encourage you to do the same. What we are doing together for the child in need is truly amazing. Doing a small part in providing the basic needs of safety, shelter and sustainability for the vulnerable ones in the world is satisfying work. I’m going to do my best to make 2019 even bigger and better.

I am ever grateful for your gifts. JH