Friday, October 28, 2011

Lots of News!

As most of you know Children's Hope is partnering with the AL Baptist Children's Home (ABCH). A lot of folks think ABCH is just involved in residential homes but they also license and oversee foster homes as well. Through our partnership, they have expanded to Montgomery and hired social worker, Bobbi Olson. Bobbi will work with our FBC families who commit to becoming foster parents. She will also work with other churches in the area recruiting families to become involved in foster care. The next 10 week foster care training class will begin in Feb. 2012. It is not too early to sign up!

Bobbi worked with Etowah County Dept. of Human Resources in several areas including foster care for about seven years. Her family moved to Prattville about five years ago. During that time, she did some contract work that allowed her to stay home with her children who are now 9 and 11. Her husband, Matt, is an accountant with the Retirement Systems of Alabama. Bobbi's office is at the Montgomery Baptist Association. We are so thankful to the MBA for partnering with us as well.

We also have news from Children's Hope in Jacmel. While we "said" we were not taking any additional children, a dire situation was presented to us. A ten year little girl lost her mother a while back and her father committed suicide recently. She was at risk of becoming a restavek which is basically a child slave in Haiti. She moved in with the other 18 children and started school this last week. Her name is Estephanie but goes by Nana. I will get pics as soon as possible.

Montgomery has a new law firm in town and it is called The Adoption Law Firm. Sam and Mary Beth McClure adopted Robi from Hungary in 2010. Sam felt called to open this firm and concentrate on adoption work. The McClure's are a Godly couple with a passion for orphaned and vulnerable children. See his website at or contact him at 334-612-3406 or

Finally, I wanted to share a picture of one of our neighbors in Jacmel. This is the cow that spends the day at Children's Hope. I think we can all agree that he needs a little fattening up!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Goats and B'days!

Joy and Tommy experienced a tremor from a small earthquake in another part of Haiti on Saturday. Joy said the entire house shook for just about 30 seconds and they ran outside grabbing just her ipad! Can you imagine the fear that went through the minds of Haitians as they felt the tremors throughout Haiti. The earthquake did no damage but I am sure it was a vivid reminder of Jan. 2010.

Many of you have asked about the Haiti trips planned for 2012. They are

Jacmel, Haiti

Jan. 29 - Feb. 3

John Bush

Team Size: 8


$500 plus cost of air fare

This team will work on building the orphanage for Children's Hope under the direction of Charley Elgin. You will also spend some time getting to know the 18 children that are currently living there.

Jacmel , Haiti

May 3 - 9

Team Size: 8

Brian Gay


$500 plus cost of air fare

This team will work on building the orphanage for Children's Hope under the direction of Charley Elgin. You will also spend time getting to know the 18 children currently living there.

Jacmel, Haiti

July 7 - 13

Team Size: 8

Tanya Birchfield


$500 plus cost of air fare

This team will work with the 18 children living at Children's Hope Orphanage. This will include some tutoring, crafts, ESL, etc.

Jacmel, Haiti

Oct. 4 - 8

Team Size: 8

Tanya Birchfield


$500 plus cost of air fare

This team will work with the 18 children living at Children's Hope Orphanage. This will include tutoring, crafts, ESL, etc.

We have been purchasing goats to help with the grass as well as possibly provide a "side business." These are the newest ones below coming to their new home in the back of a taptap.
Tommy had fun feeding them popcorn!

Many of you know that one of the translators (Davidson) has been hired to teach the children English and tutor the four that are far behind. When Joy and Tommy arrived back in Jacmel last week, all the children greeted them with "Hello, how are you today?" Davidson takes his job very seriously and we feel very blessed to have him on our team!

I will finish on this note. Last week was my birthday, so in honor of my day Joy made chocolate cupcakes for the kids so they could celebrate it. See the video below for my very special birthday gift - thanks again Joy!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Special B'day Party!

Recently, Barry and Heather Moore spent a week in Jacmel, Haiti along with their three children. They stayed at the Alabama House and spent some time with our 18 kids and toured the land site prior to the children moving in. Heather saw that we needed two stoves for the kitchen and immediately decided to take this project on. Her oldest daughter, Kathleen, would have her 14th birthday soon after returning from Haiti. With Kathleen leading the way, the family decided to throw a "Help Haiti" party instead of a traditional Birthday party. Instead of gifts for herself, Kathleen asked her friends to give monetary donations to Children's Hope for the purchase of the stoves. Her goal was to raise $900 but once the money was tallied, $940 was raised. This was enough to purchase both stoves and a goat! Over 80 of Kathleen's friends attended the party and contributed. Thanks to Kathleen, her family and friends! The ladies who help at the orphanage will no longer have to cook over an open and dangerous fire. Not only will it be safer but much more efficient. What a great example of selflessness and initiative in meeting a need.

Several young families have also shared that for their child's birthday, they want to do something for Children's Hope rather than getting gifts. Another family plans to make a contribution to CH in honor of family members for Christmas rather than giving gifts. What a wonderful mind set to have. We live in a world of excess, and I am thankful that Christians see the need to help others rather than acquiring more. As the Christmas season approaches, please consider fulfilling the needs of others whether it is CH, Compassion International, World Vision or other ministry. In fact, that would be a great gift to Jesus on His Birthday.

Kathleen is on the right.

About 80 teenagers attended!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Oct. Mission Trip

The most recent mission team to Jacmel returned this past Monday night, October 10th. Thanks to the team who gave their money, time and love to go on this trip . They were such a blessing to the children and the children were such a blessing to our team. If you ever feel unloved or unappreciated, my advice would be to spend an hour with these 18 children. They will definitely boost your spirit. They love people and life. I am including a lot of pics with this post, because I think they tell the story best. Also, Troy Teel made a video of the trip and it can be found by clicking on the following link.

Andy with Kenson and Elida
The boys loved Tyler.
The kids now have plenty of room to play - go Lovenson!
Troy playing ball with the kids.
Troy and Casimir in deep concentration.

Mary Conley, Anne Louise, Beth and Emma Beth
Charley and Martie reunited!!!
Juli with Davidson (translator and children's tutor - we love Davidson)
Children's Hope sign at the kids new home.
The kids running to the taptap to meet the team.
These kids couldn't wait for Andy to get out of the taptap!
Celia Teel gets a sweet hug from Myson.
Labeling brand new underwear for the kids - the kids were so excited to get their very own compliments of Robinson SS class at FBC.
More labeling!
Hanging up brand new backpacks in the girls' dorm. Mattresses pads were placed on all of the beds. Mattresses are expensive and hard to come by in Haiti, so we want to make these last. The mattress pads are compliments of the Pathfinder SS class at FBC.
Tommy and Joy in front of the kitchen at Children's Hope. Tommy just hung this new sign.
Emma Beth and Mary Conley Teel with some of the kids in their school uniforms.
Looks like Juli (the teacher) has things well under control!
Headed to the beach.

Tyler and Addy Hough with kids at the beach.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Move-In Day!

The awaited day finally happened and the kids couldn't have been happier. Below you will see the kids driving up each with a paper flower in their hand. The kids didn't know anything about their new home until today. All along, Samuel wanted it to be a surprise and it sure was. The kids love their new home and yard where they can run and play. We are so thankful to our Lord for making this possible and every person who helped make it happen.

The boys' dorm room
Front of the boys and girls' dorms
Kids love the freedom of a yard
Kids are listening to Samuel tell them about their new home.