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Spring Into Sponsorship: Fitsum Girma

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Fitsum Girma is a new child to the BCI child sponsorship program. She has been in the program for 3 months and the family has lived in the home they are living in for one year. This family is in desperate need of immediate action as the 5 year old’s health depends on it. Fitsum is HIV+ as are her mom and her dad. Her little 3 year old brother, Fekadu, who is not in the program so far has miraculously escaped the disease. Fitsum is small for her age due to malnutrition. The last time the social worker came to visit and upon registration, the tiny girl was so weak she could not move. Today she was fairly active and a curious little girl. The mom says the difference is she started taking the HIV medication.

Worka, their mom, washes clothes for a living and their dad, Girma, is a daily laborer. They live in an unfinished house for free serving as a guard until it is finished. The living room is bare with only a small twin mattress on the concrete floor that the whole family of four sleeps on. There were no chairs and no bed frames, only a few decorations on the wall and a few metal pots. When the house is finished the approximate cost of monthly rent is 1000 birr or $50 USD, at which point they may need to move out to another home. Currently Fitsum is not sponsored so she is not receiving any benefits from the organization to a10955206_10205909281157017_3056184887367027877_ossist her so she can be as healthy as she can be.

Right now as you can see from the photo, her leg is wounded and even though she has sought treatment for the leg, the process has been repetitive as it will heal up as she takes medicine for it, but when she finishes the medicine, it returns. The social worker thinks this is a mix of poor hygiene and disease. When she walks and if 10945545_10205909311357772_7424866730699600594_nyou watch her, you will notice her leg is slightly bowed out. Girma told us there is a specialist in Nazreth, a good doctor, that if the assistance were to come in she could be seen for more effective treatment.

Amidst her current health concerns, Fitsum will need to start school next year to be on time with other kids her age. She needs assistance immediately. Your donation will provide food for her, education for her, and will help fund her medical needs. The mom may even be able to participate in one of the income generation projects in order to get the training she needs to better provide for her family and thus come off support. Until that day happens, the Girma family needs your help financially and this Orthodox family needs your prayers.

Changing Trends

Rick and Amanda traveled to Vancouver to join the mission fest where all kinds of organizations are using their skills for the greater good of the Kingdom.  It is very heart warming to see around 175 booths showing their programs and the good that they are doing around the world. The common theme running from start to finish is that the church is moving the East. Many of the major worldwide mission organizations have Southeast Asia presidents or CEO’s, and on their board of directors.
Many of the speakers were non western or were born and educated overseas and have since moved to the west. This is a good testimony to the work of the past generation of missions. They have developed a self sustaining, self propagating church of kingdom mentality. The church is a fluid mobile organism that no other organization can compete with. Other faiths have yet to break out of their homelands.

Other trends:
• The growth of Islam is through birth rate and the growth of Christianity is through conversions, especially indigenous.
• There is a notable increase of woman and children at risk.
• Illiteracy is on the rise
• Destabilization of youth, economically, socially, spiritually and politically
• Note the last three statements are relatedIMG_20150131_130530[1]

What does this mean?
• Should western churches be putting resources into western style church planting or empower the indigenous church to grow and disciple
• Should new missions have the home office in the west?
• Should the western church start Kingdom businesses overseas to fund overseas work? Resources from the west have been declining for years.

A quote from Rick:

“Overall I feel that BCC is moving in the right direction. Our emphasis on enabling the Ethiopian church, providing income generation for our families is a step in the right direction. Our emphasis on empowering our management team in Ethiopia will prove its worth over the coming years.”IMG_20150131_132105[1]

Canadians CAN Grow Bananas

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“It was reported today that a Canadian Farmer has triumphantly grown over 2000 banana trees with great success!”

The full story should read that the Canadian Farmer stood around watching as some banana tree starts were planted in Ethiopia, producing large bunches of bananas about 7 months later.

The bananas were started in a greenhouse, grown to 3-4 inches and then transplanted to a “milk jug” size pot for 3 months.  When they were 40 centimeters tall, with 2 broad leaves, they were transplanted again into the ground.  Banana roots need porous soil, so a red ash was added to the hole to provide drainage.  The stock or trunk will grow to about 2 meters tall, 3-4 large broad leaves, producing one large stalk or two smaller stalks that die and fall and are replaced with a new “trunk” coming from the roots.  The total life span of a banana root is about 6-7 years, producing about 10-12 stalks of bananas each weighing in at approximately 25 kg.  The fallen “trunk” can be chopped and fed to animals or removed to a composting pile.

This fast growing highly productive plant has a huge appetite for water, nitrogen, phosphate and minerals.  The root system is immense.  Our banana trees will be flood irrigated, with fertilizers in the water.

Come to Ethiopia, and I will let you taste a fresh banana!