Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Orphanage Akawaba Video by David

Our soon to be very loved girls sang us a song "Akawaba," which means "welcome"


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Sunday, June 22, 2008

John teaching English

Three orphan girls learning English numbers by playing UNO with John

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Friday, June 20, 2008

Kira with orphan girls

Kira singing with the girls

Singing was one of the best methods we used to teach English to the girls. They loved all the sons, from Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes to Jesus Loves Me. I'm just day dreaming what it will be like next time I drive out to visit the children at the orphanage. I hope they don't knock me over with hugs!


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Friday, June 13, 2008

Blue boy bogeyman

Painting on the cafeteria wall at the girls' orphanage in Grand Bassam. We asked about the mysterious blue boy. The girls told me he's the boy who sleeps in the teacher's office. I guess he's their version of the bogeyman.


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Thursday, June 12, 2008

Kira tug-o-war

Kira is playing tug-o-war without a rope. They were having a lot of fun and having a good workout too.

It makes me wonder how the girls are doing today, two weeks after the team has gone home. Are they bored, lonely, having great dreams about the team or still having a lot of fun with each other? Probably a combination of all of the above. Most Ivorian orphanages only function during the school year. Nearly everyone has aunts or uncles that can take care of them, but attending school could be impossible. So the children only live at the orphanage during school months. When school is over, they return to live with family.


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Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Cookies at orphanage

English class

It is very rare for the girls at the orphanage to get to eat cookies. Two of the girls mentioned that to me at the beginning of our week of ministry there. The last day of our ministry there, we purchased three cases of cookies. Each individually wrapped package contained six cookies. It cost about $17.00 to buy enough cookies for all 150 children and staff.


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Monday, June 9, 2008

Lunch at orphanage

The team and Joshua at the lunch table

The talented cooks made us AFC, African Fried Chicken with rice and attieke, a fermented product made from grated manioc root. It looks similar to couscous.


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Friday, June 6, 2008

Kira's photos

Kira posted a lot of fun photos for us to enjoy. The links below will take you to her photo albums at Facebook.com. She did a great job organizing them by category. Hope you will enjoy them as much as we do!

Africa un 39 photos of our flights, Bateau Bus, Boulay Island beach, and the Abobo Abidjan CMA Church
Location: Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire, Africa

Africa deux 59 photos from the Alliance West African Theological Seminary
Location: Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire, Africa

Africa trois 38 photos of days at the girls orphanage
Location: Grand Bassam, Cote d'Ivoire

Africa quatre 42 photos at the Modeste Village/Assoyam Hotel
Location: Grand Bassam, Cote d'Ivoire, Africa

Africa cinq 30 photos of last day at the orphanage
Location: Grand Bassam, Cote d'Ivoire

Africa six 22 photos at the crocodile farm!
Location: Assini, Cote d'Ivoire, Africa

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Wednesday, June 4, 2008

A legacy in our lives

Thank you all for your prayers and support of the 8:08 Cote d’Ivoire team! The trip went extremely well. Our time was filled with everything from painting at an Alliance seminary to building benches and repairing walls for a village church to teaching English at an orphanage to Evangelism in the city. It was a great trip filled with great ministry. I’m especially thankful for our friends in Abidjan, Mike and Sue Farho. They did an outstanding job arranging the details of the trip and hosting the team. They worked hard to plan out every detail, ensuring that this trip would be a legacy in the lives of the students and the lives of those touched by their ministry in Cote d’Ivoire.

I have many stories to share about the great things the team saw God do and would love to share them with you if you’d like. However, I must say that the most rewarding part of the trip for me was to see 8 extremely gifted, intelligent, mature college students come home with a new passion for missions and God’s heart for the world. I can’t wait to see how God will use them all and their educations from civil engineering to culinary arts to nursing to further His Kingdom in the future!


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Monday, June 2, 2008

reflect on your trip - photos

Hey everyone! Its been a day and a half since our plane touched down at epply airfield and 5 of our team returned. Please keep Christine, Dina, Ashley, and John in your prayers as they return in the next week.

This has been my fourth time returning from a missions trip and it always is the same. You find yourself caught somewhere between a very intense and exciting situation and what you feel is a normal life. This has always been difficult for me as it has for others. It, however, is a key time where you reflect on your trip and draw upon lessons learned, deciding what impact that has on your life here in Omaha. Please continue to keep us in your prayers as we all transition back to the states in the next several weeks!

As promised, here are some more links to pictures:

Album 6 - 51 photos of the highway sights, orphanage, and the work at the Modeste C&MA church

Album 7 - 28 photos of Modeste C&MA church, beach and pool at Grand Bassam hotel

Album 8 - 51 photos of the orphanage

Album 9 - 33 photos of orphanage, crocodile farm, Modest church benches and highway sights

Album 10 - 21 photos of ice cream, baptisms, streets, airport

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Thursday, May 29, 2008

beautiful africa

Overall the scenery here is amazing. Even though it is pouring outside right now it still looks beautiful out. It's a mixture of green plants and red mud. i feel bad for all the people we saw on our way back to Abidjan walking in the rain. Our time in Grand Bassam was awesome and as i look back on helping in Modeste and at the orphanage i feel a great sense of contentment with how God used us all. Thanks for all your prayers during the whole trip, traveling is pretty rocky and dangerous because of huge potholes so we needed all the prayers we could get.


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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Lunch at the Orphanage

Today we'll eat chicken, rice and atieke with the girls at the orphanage. They are so loving and love us all so much. They aren't used to having guests like us come to spend a week with them. Some are doing super in English. A number of the girls will go on to junior high school next year. One of the house moms asked me if we could show some videos about AIDS prevention for these older girls. Unfortunately, we don't have any videos like that, but we told them who to contact.


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Monday, May 26, 2008

Teaching at the Orphanage

So far it's been great here in Grand Bassam, the weather has been fairly cooperative, mostly raining at night, and the sound of the ocean at night is unlike anything I've ever heard. It's amazing to remember that it's God's creation!

Yesterday, Sunday, after going to church and eating lunch, we went to the girls orphanage and got to teach them english. We were given objects in a bag like toy plates, spoons, or just simple objects and then we'd tell them what each thing was. Once after telling them, we'd say an object and they would have to point to it and you'd keep doing it until they got each object's name right. Once they understood those objects, you would add another and mix up the order and go over it again. We also got to teach something every kid learns- head, shoulders, knees, and toes! It think they really enjoyed it although the pronunciation wasn't perfect. There was also cartoons in english to watch or play games or coloring books, but the neat thing was they really wanted to learn english. I would point to a game and they'd point to the bag of objects!

It was so much fun to teach these girls english and some songs, they really have connected with us. If you go anywhere there, they are always latched on to you, holding your hands, and it's so crazy to know how fast they've grown onto us! Everyone, really, has bonded so well with them and everything they've learned has really sunk in; it's even weird that sometimes they will surprise you with what english they know! I just hope that we're people that have made such a big impact on their lives that we won't be forgotten. The relationships God is building in us with these girls is definitely something we'll all have a part of us for years to come.

Thanks again for your prayers, it's been such a blessing to be in this position and experience everything we have already!

For all His worth,

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Arrival, Children's Laughter, and His Love.

This weekend we arrived at Grand Bassam and it has been so glorious! To start off, our hotel is right on the beach and is so much more than I could ever expect! God's creation is so wonderful! Palm trees everywhere, the roar of the ocean is a dream to fall asleep to, the humidity is thick but I'm used to it by now. It has rained daily, which is to be expected considering it is the rainy season, but it is warm rain and I have enjoyed walking through it.

Saturday night we went to the girls orphanage and they sang us a few welcome songs, yelled out some English words, such as counting from 1-10, and American celebrities. They were exuberant when their teacher told them that we came to teach them English! I wish you could have heard the loud cry of excitement that was released from their mouths at that moment.

After eating dinner with them that night we played games and colored with them beginning to teach some English. I colored with a group of girls and went over colors. Brown and purple were a bit challenging, in regards to pronunciation, but they are eager and kept trying and trying.

I love their smiles. Every time we go there (we've been back a few times since) the same five or so gals immediately spot me out and run to give me the most ginormous hugs and cling to me so that I can barely walk. I don't mind, though. This kind of love and excitement shows a perfect example and reminder of how I should cling to Christ. He comes, with open arms to receive me, and He loves it when I run to greet him and cling to him with no sight of letting go.

The children are teaching me more than I am them, even though they may not realize it. Please pray for them and our ability to reach them with the undying love of Jesus in the next few days we are there.


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Friday, May 23, 2008

and we're off

today we leave for grand bassam. we're going to go and bless a church by building some benches for them and also we get to help out at an orphanage. i'm really excited to meet the people in the village and especially the kids at the orphanage. stephen made a comment yesterday that as attached as we got to the kids at the seminary, who have families, how much more are we going to get attached to the kids at the orphanage.

the farhos have been amazing hosts as we have stayed in their house the last few days. if you have anytime please send them a message or comment thanking them for taking such great care of us. it overwhelms me their love for Jesus and their willingness to serve us. it's no wonder they are doing great things here being so centered on Christ.

please pray for our travels and the hearts of those we will meet in the coming week.

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Monday, May 12, 2008

Orphanage office

Orphanage office
We will be painting this office for the orphanage staff


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Monday, April 28, 2008

Important needs at the orphanage

Modeste village C&MA Church

If enough funds are donated to the support of the team members, we will purchase the following items for the girls' orphanage:
  • Paint for the library, dispensary and an office
  • Notebooks with 100, 200 and 300 pages
  • Blue, Red, Green ink pens
  • Hand held blackboards
  • Geometry rulers
  • Math and Reading Textbooks
  • Notebook Protectors
  • Copier paper
  • Hand Soap
  • Bleach
  • Laundry Detergent
  • Toilet Paper
  • Milk
  • Sugar
  • Oatmeal
  • Chocolate Powder
  • Rice
  • Sardines
  • Spaghetti
  • Tylenol
  • Medication for malaria
  • Athletic equipment

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Friday, April 25, 2008

Orphanage sign

Orphanage sign
Our first visit to the orphanage in October 2006, with my niece Sara.


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Thursday, April 24, 2008

Visited Orphanage

Made plans with the Grand Bassam Girls' Orphanage for our ministry there.

Girls on their way to class.

Dormitory where the girls sleep. Notice the mosquito nets on every bed. Malaria kills 8 kids every hour in Cote d'Ivoire

Daniel and John
Daniel and John in front of the dormitory on right and dining hall on the left.


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