August has been a month of joys, sorrows and frustrations, we know this is normal life but out here they can be massive ups and downs.
One of our joys was that we have started another two children from unimaginable homes. One lives in a house that Liz was frightened to enter in case she fell through the wooden floor, the mother is heavily pregnant and the 10-year-old looks after the little girl who is 3 years old. Before being selected for day care, she would pass the gates and shout hello to Liz every morning and has such a beautiful smile. Her mother asked if we could help as the boy is not going to school, her husband is away, and the baby is due any day now. When we asked what the little girl likes to eat, her mum said food when we have some. The little girl was so excited to start day care that she was at the gates at 7.30am waiting for us to let her in.
The other child is 2 years old and has 5 siblings. Her father earns very little money and her mother is away during the day leaving her in the care of her 4-year-old brother. The parents were worried about leaving the children but had no choice, as they are very poor and need to earn money to pay their rent and buy rice. She is a sweetheart, very quiet and again always hungry.
Due to the vulnerability of these children, we cannot offer individual child sponsorship, or send you pictures of and letters from a child, but please know that you are helping the lives of these children in a profound way, giving them a safe haven, a place where people care and educate them and they have a full tummy each day. We wish you could hear them playing and singing as they go about their day, how they are learning as they play and see them run and hide when it is time to go home. Coming out on Mission can give you that opportunity.
We do carry out vigorous and essential Police Checks beforehand, to ensure they are protected but it is a great way to spend time with them. If interested in coming to Cambodia either as a group or individual, contact us at email: firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Please help us by raising awareness of our work, find others who may support us financially so we can continue to provide this day care and help many more children in the longer term. $10 per month feeds a child in day-care for a month.
Keeping the children safe was brought home to us recently during an incident outside day-care and Liz was powerless to help. The upset caused to all the staff was tangible and the incident will stay with Liz forever. She was inconsolable then God reminded her of the star-fish story – the devil was telling her “what is the point, you can’t help them all”, but God was saying “but you are helping children you are showing them my love and how much I care for them, some are already being protected each day in day care.”
At the start of August the village also experienced the death of a 4 year old due to Dengue Fever, not one of the children in our care but no less heartbreaking.
Two of our staff had moto accidents within a day of each other, the cook was sick, and we had a few children down with mild Dengue Fever, so as we say August has had its ups and downs.
One encouragement for us was the day we went to meet a young man who was going to help us go through the process of renewing our driving licences.
As we waited for the government office to open, he asked us about our work here and said afterwards, thank you for coming to help our children, I am one of the children you speak of – a Christian Charity helped me and changed the direction of my life.
He was brought up in a slum at the rubbish tip going through the rubbish for things to sell and was given the opportunity, through the Charity to learn – he is now a lovely, well-educated young man, who has made a good life for himself and his family. We felt very emotional looking at this young man and seeing how God can take a broken vessel and make it new. We imagine how our Eggshell Cambodia children will grow over the years and pray they too will have a success story due to what you are helping provide for them now.
We are in preparation now for two of our children’s graduations from Eggshell Cambodia (our first fledglings to fly the nest!). The rehearsals of the songs they will sing are progressing – slowly – Jesus Loves Me, ABC song and a Khmer worship song, getting them to stand in one place is proving to be a challenge. Our two graduate girls will be missed but they have a great start now as they move on to Primary School, all thanks to God’s provision, protection and your support.
We think we have said enough for now. We have our son Adam arriving 1st September and we are looking forward to all the little treats he is bringing us. Liz is craving Tayto Cheese & Onion while Mark is craving KP Salt and Vinegar Nuts and we are both craving “nice” chocolate (the American version is not the same). Good friends bought us chocolate to take back to Cambodia and we have been eating three squares a night so we will have enough until Adam brings more. What lovely friends we have.
Blessings to you all, especially as we know holidays are coming to an end over home and children are starting a new academic year. We love you all.
Love Mark and Liz x