Newswire – International Teams Canada http://iteams.ca Lives & Communities Transformed Tue, 27 Sep 2016 14:55:32 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Stories of Transformation: Cristine http://iteams.ca/2016/07/stories-of-transformation-cristine/ Wed, 20 Jul 2016 15:19:07 +0000 http://iteams.ca/?p=6031 Read More]]> “Poverty is not a hindrance but it should motivate us to work hard to achieve a better quality of living.” These are words of encouragement that 18-year old Cristine shared with children who are struggling in school because of their financial situation. Cristine was part of the first batch of IT Tender’s Sponsor-A-Child program back in 2011. In her first year under the sponsorship program. she was awarded “Most Outstanding Student” at her school! Christine’s family was struggling at that time because they needed to shoulder the medical expenses of her mother who had a mild stroke.

With the help of the sponsorship program, Cristine finished high school last year and received a scholarship from the City Government to study Criminology at Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Muntinlupa (The State University of Muntinlupa City). Her mother recently passed away, a tragedy that has made Cristine stronger and more inspired to do well in college. Although it is not easy, she says that college is difficult in a good way because she knows that in the end it will be worth it. She explains that she needs to maintain high grades to keep her scholarship and to cope with the demands of her professors.

Cristine shared some words of gratitude when upon her graduation from IT Tender’s sponsorship program. “Thank you for joining me in my journey in school. You have become a part of my life, as well as through the joys and pains. Now that I am facing a new chapter in my life, I know it will not be easy. I will give my best to stay strong. And I know that God will guide me like how He guided me in high school.”

 

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Impact Rwanda: Teaching Literature in Kiziba http://iteams.ca/2016/07/impact-rwanda-teaching-literature-in-kiziba/ Fri, 15 Jul 2016 15:14:56 +0000 http://iteams.ca/?p=6027 Read More]]> When planning to start a secondary school in Kiziba Refugee Camp, Oscar and those around him knew they were going to be doing a lot of work with very little. In the early days of the school they had no textbooks of their own and would have to send teachers to walk fifteen kilometers to another school to borrow books. And a few weeks later the teachers would have to make the trek again to return the books, having taught and taken what notes they could in that time. These trips took a lot of time from their other duties and something needed to change.

Through the help of International Teams and donors inspired by the school leaders’ initiative, the Kiziba Community Library now hosts the required textbooks and literature for secondary schools in Rwanda. The teachers don’t have to walk many kilometers, just through the camp. The students likewise now have an abundance of school materials at their fingertips, accessing needed resources to help with their studying and understanding. But the library doesn’t just have textbooks for the secondary school. With thousands of donated books, including various educational materials, a hefty non-fiction section, and additional pieces of great literature in multiple languages, the library offers the students and the teachers of Kiziba High School (KHS) a place to greatly expand their learning outside of school. And these resources are indeed adding something good to the community.

Robbie, a team member from iTeams USA, got to see this student growth for himself. Robbie occasionally taught on various topics during the Reading Workshop, a twice-weekly time for the secondary students to study at the library. After the beginning of the school year Robbie taught on one of the novels from the school curriculum. There was little engagement from the students and Robbie left feeling a little deflated. There are a lot of important ideas in that book, and he felt that very little of it was picked up by the students. But in October he taught again on a different book and was amazed at the level of participation from the students, the competency in reading, and the ability of several students to see through the author’s words to the deeper meanings. It was like teaching a completely different group of students, which, in a sense, was exactly the case. The students continue to learn, to grow, to become the kinds of people who understand well the world around them and know how to utilize their increasing knowledge. In the words of Oscar, the library “has come as part of the solution to the problem of education” in the camp. And with better education comes the potential for a brighter future for whole communities.

(Note: The books mentioned above are Petals of Blood by Ngugi wa Thiong’o and The Beautyful Ones Are Not Yet Born by Ayi Kwei Armah. These books are outstanding examples of African literature and Robbie highly recommends both.)

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Impact Kenya-PACE: God showed up! http://iteams.ca/2016/07/impact-kenya-pace-god-showed-up/ Wed, 13 Jul 2016 15:12:16 +0000 http://iteams.ca/?p=6023 Read More]]> As you may already be aware, the boys’ dormitory at PACE burned down this spring as a result of an electrical fire that broke out early in the morning while the primary school boys were still asleep. After screams from the girls alerted the high school boys to the fire, they rushed back to the dorms and carried out the sleeping younger boys. Although there were a couple of minor injuries due to falling in the darkness, all of the children were rescued safely.

The art, library, and computer room have been temporarily converted into boys’ dorms. Once the new library and high school building are completed, it will be a permanent, risk-free, and modern facility that can be used for the boys’ dorms until a permanent dorm can be built.

Most of the metal storage boxes used by the students were destroyed along with their contents, but one item was salvaged untouched by the fire: a Bible belonging to one of the boys. The students at PACE see this as a sign that God showed up that morning.

As of the beginning of June, we have collected all we need to cover the cost of replacing the beds and mattresses, pillows and blankets, the clothing, uniforms books, personal items, and the steel trunks that each child had. Much of this came from the generous response of the International Teams Canada donors. Thank you so much for your support!

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Stories of Transformation: Mario http://iteams.ca/2016/07/stories-of-transformation-mario/ Mon, 11 Jul 2016 15:00:16 +0000 http://iteams.ca/?p=6020 Read More]]> La Jornada (“The Journey”) is a shared home for former street kids who have left the streets for various children’s homes, graduated from high school and are committed to continuing their education by taking up a skilled trade or gaining a professional qualification. Andres, one of the staff members at La Jornada, shared this story with us while visiting Canada in June.

“We have a young man whose name is Mario who has been visiting the ministry for the last five years, mostly just on weekends. His dad is an alcoholic and there was a lot of abuse at home. We were always trying to encourage him to go back to school, to set up long-term goals. Last year during a short-term team visit, David — a member of the team that comes every year — felt on his heart that he should talk to Mario about his life and share from his own life as well. They got to know each other and David encouraged him to go back to school. Finally this year he decided that he wanted to move in with us and join the program full-time!

God used David to show that he really cares about Mario. He moved into the house in April, and we have registered him for high school. The beginning was quite hard for him, especially going back to school after being away for five years. But we have seen lots of positive changes in him in just a couple of months.”

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Impact Ecuador earthquake update http://iteams.ca/2016/07/impact-ecuador-earthquake-update/ Fri, 08 Jul 2016 14:56:39 +0000 http://iteams.ca/?p=6015 Read More]]> Although the news coverage of Ecuador has mostly disappeared, there is still great pain and suffering resulting from the April earthquake, which killed at least 663 people. Entire towns have been flattened and very little help has reached the people, many of whom are sleeping in tents or on the street.

Responding to the great need, a team of 13 people from Carmen Bajo went to the impacted areas the last weekend of May.  The team experienced great unity and the Lord led them to a small town where aid has not yet arrived. The destruction was beyond what they expected. They were heart-broken to see the conditions.

Carmen Bajo was able to share from the supplies that past teams have brought down to them, as well as from their own resources.  In addition, Impact Ecuador was able to provide some funds to help purchase food and other resources to distribute. They held programs with the kids and youth from that community, conducted a church service, and distributed kits with food and hygiene items to the families. The people were extremely grateful and each team member took away the challenge to continue supporting this community.

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CFPC has a new woodworking instructor! http://iteams.ca/2016/07/cfpc-has-a-new-woodworking-instructor/ Wed, 06 Jul 2016 14:54:23 +0000 http://iteams.ca/?p=6011 Read More]]> We thank God for Deni Kaboré, our new woodworking shop instructor! A good instructor makes a huge difference to the program. Deni joined our staff at the beginning of the school year in November. He has more than 5 years practical experience as well as training at the top vocational training centre in Burkina Faso, but his best qualification is that he truly enjoys working with the students and wants to pass on his knowledge to them.

The students have blossomed under his instruction and guidance. We have been pleasantly surprised at how quickly the students have been able to tackle some difficult woodworking projects, such as chairs, and with the high quality of their work. The students arrive early in the morning and are eager to start their day. When Roger arrives with a truck load of lumber the students quickly unload the truck, talking excitedly about the projects they will be completing using the lumber that has just arrived.

Our woodworking program is progressing so well this year as a result of Deni’s enthusiasm and skills.

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Radio interview with Haiti Partners! http://iteams.ca/2016/03/radio-interview-with-haiti-partners/ Wed, 09 Mar 2016 16:42:40 +0000 http://iteams.ca/?p=5863 This past week Greg Reader got a chance to sit down and interview Kent Annan and Jonathan Chan from Haiti Partners about life, ministry and Ken’t new book.

Click here for interview audio

Enjoy!

 

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Impact Rwanda: Stories of Transformation http://iteams.ca/2015/12/impact-rwanda-stories-of-transformation/ Tue, 15 Dec 2015 19:25:07 +0000 http://iteams.ca/?p=5747 Read More]]> Impact Rwanda takes a holistic approach to meeting the needs of the desperately poor and vulnerable people of Rwanda by engaging with spiritual and physical health, and education and skills training. We focus on women, refugees, and at­ risk youth and children.

Community Bible Church

Breaking the mold of traditional Rwandan church leadership, Community Bible Church (CBC) is the country’s first indigenous elder ­led church. Not long ago we were reflecting on the people whom God has brought to CBC – orphans, refugees, widows, those estranged from their spouses, those disillusioned with church – and realized that God had brought to the church those we asked for: people in need of life transformation.

Passy is 24, the son of a pastor, and part of a broken family where the children have been forced to choose between mom and dad. He came to CBC very disillusioned by church and those that call themselves Christians. He came because a friend invited him, telling him that CBC was different. Now, Passy never misses an opportunity to be part of church each week.

Serge recently met with him and asked what has been the greatest change in his life in the last year. Passy responded, peace. Peace in his relationship with God and how he navigates his family relationships.

Komeza Women

In Rwanda, women are considered the heart of the family. This is even more evident in poor families where women do almost everything to make sure that their children and husband have what they need to survive.

Chantal is one such woman. She is heavily pregnant with her second child, and yet walks 45 minutes each way to work at J.Lynn’s each day. She makes the best salsa in town and makes sure that all the donuts are iced and decorated to perfection – along with all the other tasks she helps with at the shop.

Chantal also has the mind of an entrepreneur and is on her way to helping her family become self­ sufficient. Currently she has 2 mama pigs and five piglets with more on the way. Each day, she collects the leftover scraps from J.Lynn’s to help feed them. She has expanded her services to include reselling vegetables and trusts God that this little business can grow to also employ her husband. Pray for her to continue to trust God and to be faithful in what he has given her and her family.

Children and Youth At Risk

Apollinaire is 22 years old. He has been in our program for street kids since 2006. He was a house boy trying to survive when we first connected with him and recognized that there was something special about him. He started back to school in grade 4.

He is incredibly conscientious and works most diligently in all things – sometimes stressing too much that he’s not doing good enough, to which have always replied that we are more concerned about his character and walk with God than how well he performs in school. He has just finished grade 10 in the top 5 of his class and will start grade 11 in January.

What a year! These are just a few of the stories of impact and we are seeing more each day. Your support has truly made a difference in transforming lives and communities in Rwanda. Thank You! Your partnership matters.

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Bringing 110 Street Children to Disneyland was a Huge Success! http://iteams.ca/2015/12/bringing-100-street-children-to-disneyland-was-a-huge-success/ Wed, 09 Dec 2015 19:17:48 +0000 http://iteams.ca/?p=5683 Read More]]> We’re so grateful for the help of the Sunrise Community Church, Extreme Response, Action International and all of the individuals like you who generously supported IT Tender’s Disney themed Christmas Party this year.

Several mothers said that it was the first time their children had played on a bouncing castle and that they were so happy. Celebration and fun together is so important for learning and community building!

Here are some Pictures from the event to enjoy!

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To see more pictures from the awesome Photobooth Click here!

Thank you and God bless you for spreading joy with our children this Christmas! 

 

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You Can send a street child to Disneyland this Christmas! http://iteams.ca/2015/11/you-can-send-a-street-child-to-disneyland-this-christmas/ Fri, 27 Nov 2015 17:52:50 +0000 http://iteams.ca/?p=5673 Read More]]> Bringing 100 Street Children to Disneyland!

As you might guess, children in Manila love Disney just as much as children in the West.  …or even more, if possible. The street kids in our educational programs only dream of experiencing Disneyland. This Christmas, in the spirit of bringing joy and making dreams possible, we want to bring all of the children to Disneyland! 

Yes, this seems like a near-impossible plan. However, we discovered that the trick is not necessarily to get them to Disneyland, but to get Disneyland to them. So on December 5th we’re throwing a Disney-themed party for the street kids. This is no small-time, backyard party. In fact, there will be a castle, appearances from Disney characters (who may look curiously like IT Tender staff), a feast fit for kings, and Christmas gifts (with toys, hygiene and school supplies). We will also share the true meaning of Christmas, about a kingdom much greater than Disney’s “Magic Kingdom” and a king who humbly came to earth as a baby in a manger.

To pull off this epic feat and give our children the chance to experience Disneyland, we need your help! 

For every $5 donation a child will be able to join the party. Click here to Donate  and share the joy this Christmas!

Take care,

John Coffey
Director of IT Tender

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