Our first team of 25 arrives this Friday night....9 of them leave after 1 week & 16 will stay for a 2nd week. We have another team of 11 coming in to overlap with the remaining 16. The day after both of those teams leave, a group of 10 will come in. We will leave the next day with 20 kids and head for the beach for a week! The group will come back to Shell for the next week to work on the property. And on and on through the end of August....
All of that to say... The blog will suffer greatly during this time. :) Please expect a serious lack of communication on my part.
For now....I wanted to just give you a few updates on what God has been doing here lately.
- Last week we received news that we have been given a $50,000 grant from a foundation in the States! Patti Sue and I sat down to write a simple proposal/request...and 2 weeks later the money was wired. God is so amazing! With this money, we can pay off one of the hospital bills in Quito, completely finish the MUB, and help with the new school-building. We will also actually have money in the bank account that has been EMPTY after each of the last few pay-days.
- Antoney, Veronica, and Lorena have all gone home with their families recently. These are all hopeful situations, and we're happy the kids can be with loved ones again. Please keep them in your prayers.
- Thalia, Abigail, and Alondra are possibly going home after school is over. This is not as hopeful of a situation, but Patti Sue and Mama Ines are doing everything possible to provide the girls resources to ask/call/come for help if needed.
- Ivan & Edy (brothers) might also go home to be with their dad. He could not take care of them as a single father, but he has recently re-married. The step-mom wants to bring the boys home, so this is a great situation!
- Fernando in the toddler house is also possibly going to live with his father as well. The single father took back his older son a couple of years ago. The dad works as a sort of traveling salesman, and the older brother stays with him. Now that Fernando is a little older, the dad feels like he can take care of both boys. This father loves them very much, and the boys' lives will be changed by that love.
- We are ready to go for next year! We have 3 full-time teachers committed: Ali & Dallas returning, and Megan Shepherd (one of our friends!) will be new. Omer & Mary Jane Troyer will be here for most of the school year; Omer will be the Director of Education. Ingan & Pehr - a couple from Sweden- both teachers- will also be moving here for the year. We have a pediatric nurse coming to work full-time as well...Ashley Van Conant. Mike & Lindy Waskosky will continue to help in so many ways. We also have 3 other full-time female volunteers for the school year.... Bethany Sauls, Aleta Lucero, and Amanda Moore. They will be helping with one-on-one tutoring, therapy, teaching P.E., teaching art, extra-curricular activities, teaching pre-school & ESL, etc.... I hate to clump them all together like this, but we're so excited about every single person! God has provided...as always.
- Things are going great at the property! The walls are going up on the 2nd floor. Within the next 2 weeks, the walls on the first floor will hopefully be completely finished (2 layers of plaster & paint). Tiling will begin soon.... The new school building's foundation is being worked on as well. PLEASE pray that things will continue, and we'll be able to move in with plenty of time before school starts!