April 25, 2008

PROLASA Canada Team Visits Congo

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Three of the PROLASA Canada team have just returned from a 10-day visit to the Democratic Republic of Congo. Dr. Barry taught a course in Human Ecology at the University of Idjwi (UNILAI) from April 7 through 11 while Melissa, PROLASA Canada’s new Development Director was able to get to know the team in Congo and Daniel was able to address the erosion problem at the Patmos Children’s Village, do some more work with the improved stove project and he was also able to do some photo documentation of the many projects on the Island of Idjwi.

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Dr. Barry teaching Human Ecology at the University of Idjwi

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Sometime class would meet outdoors under the mango tree!

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Melissa & Daniel visiting a School on the Island of Idjwi

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Melissa meeting with a women’s association on Idjwi

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Melissa greeting the ladies of Idjwi

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Daniel en route to a Pygmy village

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Daniel & Barry overlooking Lake Kivu

The visit was a great success and now there are many ideas that are being processed, projects that are being developped and plans being made. Keep your eye on the website for news of each of these projects.


April 25, 2008

Patmos Children Help Deaf-Mute Man

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Several years ago, a poor, deaf-mute, crippled man arrived at the Patmos Children’s Village and asked for help. He was given permission to build a shelter for himself at the edge of the campus and before long he had a simple shelter made from some sticks and piece of tarp. He made a bed for himself from some sticks and rags and then he moved in. With a withered, deformed right hand and arm, he had a significantly decreased ability to care for himself. His hygiene was poor, his skin was covered with parasites and he was obviously malnourished.

The children at Patmos decided to take care of him. They brought him food, they removed all the parasites from his skin, they helped him with bathing and they found some clothes for him. And what a difference their care has made!!! When we arrived this time, he was clean, better dressed and he had gained a bit of weight. He was thrilled to see us and he greeted us very warmly. He participates in all the group activities on campus and the children include him with enthusiasm.

What a thrill to see the children passing on the blessings that they have received to someone else in need. That is precisely what Christianity is all about!

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April 25, 2008

Patmos House Mothers Begin a Bakery Project

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The house mothers at the Patmos Children’s Village had an idea that they would like to organize a bakery to supplement their incomes. Arrangements were made to build a building just off campus and a bakery was set up. The house mothers take turns working in the bakery in the early hours of the morning and they are turning out some wonderful bread. This is the only bakery on the island of Idjwi (population 210,000) and they have had no problem selling all of their bread. In fact, orders are coming in and the bread is sold and paid for before it is baked!

Some of the children from the Patmos Children’s Village are now employed in the bakery and they are learning how to bake bread and manage a business. The financing for the project was provided by a microfinancing women’s project whereby the housemothers received a small loan. This loan is being paid back as their business succeeds.

Congratulations ladies for a job well done.

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