• sarah@healingeyes.org

Tag Archives: africa

All Moved In

After a week I am now in my new apartment. It was quite an accomplishment! 10pm Uganda time we moved in under the veil of darkness – and it wasn’t easy. Unfortunately, the bed wasn’t complete yet, so some guys were sawing and hammering for an hour… Everything is slow here!
My mosquito net is the wrong size (too small) so I am now half under it with pillows holding it down, and the varnish on the bed frame is giving me a headache. However, I am happy to say I have a lot of steel between me and the outside, as well as, steel padlocks on my steel doors and I am bolted in snug as a bug in jail. I have many many keys and feel like I am in Alcatraz prison.
My shower was nice even though the design is quite bizarre:)

Today in the village we looked for land and had some good luck..
I also found one of my kids was sick so since I have a car still we took her right to the clinic immediately! Had I not had the car she wouldn’t have made it to the clinic because it is too far. We found out she has malaria. So she now has medicine and I pray she heals quickly. It’s so amazing how in America such a thing as this trip to a clinic is taken for granted. Here the distance and cost for transport prevents many from getting to a clinic. If God hadn’t put Healing Eyes in touch with this village than each child we help wouldn’t know compassion.
This makes me smile and justifies the insane heat, lonely nights, steel cage, and absence of meals.

Goodnight to all and remember today as you rest your head on your pillow that a little girl is in a grass hut feeling a bit better knowing God is caring for her thru our prayers and Action taken to be here in Africa

Sarah

nikki

The difference 1 year can make

I am reading my old journal from St Croix and one year ago as I prepared to leave to return to Michigan I wrote this…

“It will be ok. I will give you more children than you can imagine. Be ready when I call and go when I say to. Study my word and prepare your heart and faith. Support will come in ways you can’t imagine quite yet. Go to Michigan and then wait. St Croix will still be here and the kids are watched over. You did what you needed to do now go.”
“Sarah trust me in the coming months. It will be hard but each change will be easier for you to adapt. I am training you for mobility and travel. Teaching you when to go and when to stay. Molding your heart to withstand storms to lean on me. Planning is no more. It’s now My time to shape you . Trust me to lead you and don’t let go of my hand.”
“Pain is my gift to you my child. With it comes wisdom and great responsibility. Leadership and the willingness to do my work. No more working for others or yourself…. You will work for me”

1 Peter 5:10
And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm, and steadfast.

And now it’s a year later and I’m in Africa suffering with the least of these and those who want to do me harm… And there are more children than I can count.
Does God mean what he says? Hmm maybe…

nikki

Unite the village for the children!

As I type my stomach is cramping in ways I didn’t know it could. I have gotten stomach pains before but this is a bit alarming. But never fear my wonderful driver got me some medicine this morning and I pray it improves. My new friend at the guest house found me ear drops and now i am hopeful the pain will stop.

Another blessing is Teacher sara is on her way no bus right now to come see me for the weekend. Hallelujah a friend!
What else can i be thankful for? um… um…I’m safe in a locked room and the staff are very nice to me. I even have arranged to take the cleaning lady from here to help me twice a week at my apartment (whenever i can even move in that is).
I also took a hot shower so that’s another plus!
Ministry side I met with the parents today at there annual meeting at the school (5 hours sitting in a plastic chair in front of everyone). It was ‘interesting’. I had to set a few things straight with the parents that I wasn’t sponsoring all there children. They had the impression I was since last time I took photos of there kids (another reason why to be cautious of photographing in the village). I was the last of the official guests to do a speech (they are big on speeches here). My stomach was near death by the time i stood under the mango tree and threatening thunderstorm. I held my bible and thought I would read from it about God trusting you with a little before giving you more but I ended up spouting out a bunch of stern words and moving my arms around passionately. I think by now they know I am not here with lots of money and that I am here for there kids and to encourage them to work hard and that they should all pay there child’s school fees and to not expect handouts. Yes, healing eyes is helping with 30 of the orphans/disabled/hiv kids but not all the kids who have parents that can work. It’s hard not to help all of them since they are struggling in poverty but money isn’t always the answer I told them. God will trust them with a little and then if they are faithful God will trust more. Sadly other white people with good intentions have caused Africans in the village to think we mean money and will fix there problems with handouts. It can be easier to just give money to fix an issue without putting long term investment in the people trying to help themselves.
Right about now a short easy fix of throwing money sounds nice as I am already homesick and lonely but I can’t give up now. The culture here won’t change in my lifetime but we have to start somewhere! Small seeds for change.
It did feel a bit like a united village at the end of the meeting. John wanted me to portray that feeling of Unity..to Unite a village to help themselves he said. Felt like a speech before going to war in the Braveheart movie really, my arms in the air yelling for change and courage to persevere during suffering.

Healing Eyes

What ‘Going’ can accomplish

Do you know that All of you are now going to Eastern Uganda through me? Because of Healing Eye’s partners who donated I have been blessed to be God’s servant to those hurting. We are all helping to Feed, Clothe, and Teach 31 of the most needy children at Buweboya Vision Junior School.

So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow. The one who plants and the one who waters have one purpose, and they will each be rewarded according to their own labor. For we are co-workers in God’s service; you are God’s field, God’s building. By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as a wise builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should build with care. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. If anyone builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work. If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward. – 1 Corinthians 3:8-14 NIV

God said ‘Go’ a year ago and now we all are servants and soon to be the Builders.

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Healing Eyes

Not my prunes!

It’s with great sadness I must announce that sacrifices are to be made in preparation for departing this Sunday for Africa. My beloved Prunes can’t make the journey with me and so the African diarrhea will be highly probable while there. But it is for a good cause I say goodbye to my prunes because I am bringing some beautiful children’s books donated by the Theological Book Network in Kentwood Michigan. I know it’s a tough choice but as I sat looking at my 2 boxes that I can only get 50 lbs each in I thought well the kids sure would smile at the sight of colorful books.

March 13th I fly out again and begin another journey of discovery into the rabbit hole of Africa. What will I find this time? Who will I become? and most importantly what will we at Healing Eyes see revealed to us by God’s leadership?

Land? ….maybe
Laughter? …I hope so
Tears? …definitely
Worth it? …Definitely!
Healing Eyes

We can feed 12 kids!

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The cost of going out to dinner with your sweetie can feed 12 of our kids at Buweboya. Wow!

The cost of our Sales Tax expense from the Chili Cook-Off could have paid for 12 kids to eat at school. Wow!

The cost of a pair of Gap Jeans could pay for 20 kids to eat at school for 1 month. Wow!

You get the idea by now…no matter how small you think a contribution is to our charity you are making a bigger difference than you think! Wow!

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Healing Eyes

Starting small and growing

Grow with us and Learn with us in a foreign country.

Healing Eyes is a charity that you can grow with instead of being lost in those larger charities. If your the type that likes to see something begin from the ground up and hear amazing stories of God working in broken lives than go no farther.

Today I woke up to an email from Uganda from the pastor there who was bringing one of our boys to a boarding school for the deaf.

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Our Emma has safely arrived and joined the baby class, even though he is about 8 years old already. We are so excited to have our 4th kid placed in an already established boarding school. We are praying he adjusts well and finally gets the education he craves.

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We also found out great news about our 2 kids who had surgeries in January, Sinambio and Sarah.

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Healing Eyes

Unfortunate accidents leave 2 of our Kids injured

Andera and Simon Peter are two kids in the Buweboya community who have had a bit of bad luck lately. Andera was bitten by a snake and is recovering. Simon Peter has hurt his chest after falling from a Jack Fruit tree, it is unknown if he has any serious injuries because they are unable to get X-rays at a clinic due to the distance and cost. Please pray for these kids to recover and start school. The information I receive is over email currently but I am looking forward to being there March 13 to see in person how the children are and how we are progressing at the school.

andera

simonPeter

Healing Eyes

Q&A

Is this a non-profit you started or another organization you joined?

Answer: It’s a brand new 501c(3) non-profit that Sarah started after becoming a widow at 33, it was started in 2014 and became an official 501c(3) 1 year to the date from the passing of Sarah’s husband.

What do you do?

Answer: Support a ministry team to train and educate the local leaders on how to administer the school and provide support for widows and orphans. Provide quality Christian education for orphans and impoverished children by constructing a school building. Provide meals to children who would normally go without. Support the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of widows and struggling families. Assist in community development.

How do you pay for all of this?

Answer: Donations from individuals and a couple churches. Fundraisers like the upcoming Chili Cook-Off.

Do you have enough money to build a school and buy land right now?

Answer: Nope but we have faith.

How many times has Sarah been to Africa?

Answer: 4 in the last year

Is this an orphanage?

Answer: No it is not. The children go home each day to stay with caregivers or parents if they are alive.

Do you find homes for the orphans?

Answer: No there is no adoption program. The orphans are cared for by the village and grandparents.

How many kids are you trying to help?

Answer: About 200 kids currently learn under the 2 shade trees. There is no school building and the teachers are volunteers from the community. We want to buy land and build a school some day.

Do you feed the kids?

Answer: We are setting that up now for the 31 most needy children. It consists of Posha and Beans, a staple in Africa. But we still need help from donors like you to keep it going.

How does this affect me?

Answer: It doesn’t but it might be shocking to learn most of the world lives in extreme poverty and lacks common comforts like clean water, regular meals, quality education, and shelter. Long term what happens in Africa can play a part in our life here as we become more global and the pain of others impact our lives here.

When is your next fundraiser?

Answer: February 19th at Gaines Church we are holding a Chili Cook-Off and Silent Auction. Come learn more!

What can I do to help?

Answer: Pray and consider donating monthly to help ministry costs which includes: financial help for Sarah (founder and missionary), feed and teach the children. Share with churches and pastors, volunteer your skills in grant writing or fundraising experience. Or just contact us to start asking more questions

Healing Eyes

Who..What..Where..

Who are You…and Who do you want to be?

2 years in the making and we are growing! How do we grow? With a lot of patience and faith to connect others with a dream and a passion to help orphans and widows. With a handful of dedicated supporters I can honestly say I feel like we are on the right track and the Healing Eyes team is growing.

What are we about?

It used to just be about Sarah’s story and a rediscovery of faith in God. For 2 years that small seed has been nurtured and spread across the world but now it’s more than One seed. Compassion is changing lives by connecting with more and more people who also want their life to be about something more. To make a difference in the flavor of the world and see what comes out of a little faith in God.

Healing Eyes has connected with orphans and widows in Eastern Uganda, we see a chance to put a little effort into a plan to grow that relationship and bring education along with hope to hundreds of people. We see a school full of children that need a chance. We see widows abandoned and struggling in need of a chance. We see despair in the eyes of the forgotten and abused. We see God wooing our hearts back to a simple solution….to show love in its pure and simple form.

In return each person that partners with Healing Eyes will see a piece of them live on and know even the smallest steps can make a difference in eternity. Enjoy the ride and live beyond our abilities!

Who are we now?

Our Board of Directors has grown and become stronger with 4 dedicated individuals: Cindy Smith, Donald Hendriksen, John Steele, and Shawn Pearce. We have had volunteers participate in 2 annual fundraisers: Chili Cook-Off and Whoa Benefit Concert. We have had another missionary join a mission trip in December: Jacob Burnside. We have local friends in Africa working closely with the children and providing for their needs, as we begin to establish our presence in Uganda for 2016. We have partnered with a handful of churches in the Grand Rapids area to share the mission and gain support: Gaines Church, Family of Christ Church, Sycamore Community Baptist Church, and more to come.

Continue to pray for Healing Eyes this year and consider partnering on a monthly or one-time basis to stay involved with the mission. Sign up here

A little glimpse at our past and how we began…

 

Healing Eyes