About the speakers, sessions, worship, over 1,000 other like minded folks attending, and especially about time away together alone. With no kids. It has been way too long since we've had that. Yes, we are sad to leave our children and will most definitely miss them, but we are confident that they are in the best hands we could leave them in and that they will have a wonderful time together with their 5 cousins at Papa and Grandma's house in the country! Pray not only for us, but for them too!
One of the things I have been looking forward to is getting to meet others who have a passion for orphans and who have been making a difference already. I have gotten made fun of a bit for having "blog friends" that I don't even know in real life, but how awesome it will be to meet up with a few of these people that I have gotten to know through the world of adoption and blogging! Then maybe I can say we're real life friends -lol!
Randy and I are especially excited about meeting some of the folks from LifeSong for Orphans, the organization that helped us bring Elliana home by providing a matching grant and a way for our friends and family to be able to participate by giving to the adoption through Lifesong. (they wrote a little about our journey to Elliana on their blog. You'll have to check it out.) I feel like I know them already from our email contact, facebook and reading their blog. But how cool it will be to meet some of them for real at the conference!
Every so often I am going to be featuring an in-country orphan care project that Lifesong is doing. Most people don't know that they are about SO much more than grants and loans for adoptions. They are working ALL OVER THE WORLD on behalf of the vulnerable and fatherless children and God is blessing their efforts as they continue! I am starting out with this post that is highlighting their feeding program and Christian school in Ziway, Ethiopia. I would love it if you took the time to read what's happening and it would be awesome if you could help support the project too! Every little bit helps! Thank you in advance!!!
This TOTALLY makes me want to go to Ethiopia even more than ever. What? You haven't heard me talk about that yet? Oh, I guess I'll have to save that for another time! :-)
We found many of the students in the Ziway Lifesong School were coming to school hungry and brought no food for lunch. Teachers complained of lack of attention on the students’ part. Lifesong initiated a school feeding program in November, 2009, for all 300 students at the school.
For breakfast each receives fafa, a porridge-like food that provides the nutrients that each growing child needs. The lunch menu rotates through a cycle of fish soup, the national foods of shiro and injera, vegetable beef soup, and pasta.
Now that the Adami Tulu Nursery School has re-opened, Lifesong has also started a similar breakfast and lunch feeding program there.
The Ziway school feeding program, in which 300 children are fed two meals each day, has been very successful. Caregivers, teachers, and the students themselves report that they are much healthier, more attentive in class, and have more muscle and skin tone.
Sustaining the program of feeding each student a nutritious breakfast and lunch at the Adami Tulu School will take additional funding and special logistics. However, if it is God’s will, we know that He will provide what is necessary for the feeding program. On the first day of the feeding program, all students were measured for their height and weight and this data was recorded. Several children were found to be malnourished. Now that we have this statistical data, we intend to monitor the students’ progress.
In Ethiopia, $3 feeds 1 child for a month!