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A Cavaillon Giving Tree

By Jennifer Fenton

Can you imagine cooking for 85 children and their caretakers over an open fire? Can you imagine spending all day, cooking pot after pot of rice and beans, trying to prepare enough food to fill the hungry bellies of growing children? This used to be the reality for the caregivers at the Cavaillon Children's Village (how Haitians refer to the orphanage—isn’t that such a better name?!). Fortunately, a fully equipped kitchen with stoves and pots was built a few years ago!

Unfortunately, shortly after the kitchen was completed, Hurricane Matthew ripped through Haiti, damaging buildings and displacing the children to another village. Almost 2 years later, the children are back at Cavaillon with their functioning kitchen. They are now ABLE to have more nutritious meals cooked in an efficient time frame, but the funds to buy the food are lacking.

Our church, along with several others across Chicagoland and a church in Florida, support this orphanage in its entirety. The children are clothed, fed, schooled, given haircuts and basic medical care, loved by house parents, and protected by a security guard all through the generous sponsorship of the Chicago Presbytery.

This year, we are 22 sponsors short, which totals about $24,000. When money is lacking, food is stretched. Trip after trip the medical staff comment on how much better the children are doing in terms of their health and nutrition than they were just six short years ago when the sponsorship program started and malnutrition was the norm. Now, we want to take advantage of the kitchen and continue maintaining a good nutrition status for all of our children.

This advent season, will you consider partnering with us to ease some of the burden of unmet needs? Our mission team is hosting a "Giving Tree" with 5 different levels of one-time gifts, as well as year long sponsorship levels of $30, $60, or $90 per month. It is our hope and prayer that the children’s village of Cavaillon feel the love of Christ being poured out from their brothers and sisters in Chicago.

Our giving tree starts with donations of $5, which is the cost of school day breakfasts for one week for one child. $10 is the cost of school day breakfasts AND dinners for one child for one week. $20 provides a house mom (or "Mama") one day’s wage. $70 sends a child to school for one year. $100 is the cost of all of one child's needs for one month. If you feel led, you or a small group together, can sign up to sponsor a child or part of child for a one-year commitment.

Thank you, dear friends, who already give of your time and finances, and thank you to those who will pray. Our God is so big and so good. It is such a privilege that he calls us from Chicago to be in community with these precious children in Haiti. If you do feel led, please look for the tree during fellowship this Sunday Nov 18th through Dec 23rd.

For more information on Chicago Friends of Haiti go to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QLZ8lEii1sk   

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