An Incredible Amount of GOOD NEWS

Today has been an especially fruitful day. On the smaller side of these great things, I got an email from Pittsburgh Theological Journal telling me about one of my reviews they had just published; I had no idea they were going to as it’s been a while since I’ve heard from them. Moving on…in other news...our son crawled for the first time today :) That was fun to see.

On the more magnitdunious side of these great things, I’ve received a ton of phone calls and emails today regarding Korah, some being from very passionate and significant people! Through these conversations, I found out that yesterday’s “Tweet for Korah: The SHOE Campaign” has virtually been tripled and maybe even multiplied 5 or 6 times!!! How did this happen?

Well, we raised $300 on our own which is enough to buy somewhere around 50 pairs of shoes. Dave McIlrath, who is one of HelpKorah’s Awareness Team members and owner of the Ethiopia Guest Home (where I stayed when I was there a month ago), called me. He informed me that the organization Soles for Jesus had a team member traveling with his group that is leaving this Friday. They had somewhere around 175-200 pairs of shoes! Many of these will go to Korah!!! Dave will donate these along with those, which he purchases with our donations. Dave and I are beginning to forge what appears to be a great friendship and shared vision for Korah.

Second, as if the Soles for Jesus gig wasn’t enough of a supplement, through a number of emails and phone calls, Amanda Lawrence, executive director of Soles for Souls and I were able to speak on the phone; she is also working with the organization Visiting Orphans. She is sending a team to Addis in April and they plan on taking an extra 100-120 pairs of shoes, as well as blankets to Korah! Amanda and I have agreed to keep in contact and to begin partnering on things together.

If this wasn't enough, thirdly, I got a call from Sumer Yates, another one of our great Team Members. Sumer just returned from a trip to Africa where, on her last day, she visited the dump by Korah and spent Christmas day providing many with a very nice dinner. Sumer is incredibly passionate about HelpKorah and has tons of great ideas. We talked for about 45 minutes and we have decided to begin the creation of a “Life Sustenance” branch of HelpKorah. While we will have missionaries, mission teams, etc. go in and share the Gospel through teaching and preaching, a large part of what the Life Sustenance branch will do is help people with no income, generate life sustaining income. Our plan is to equip people with gifts. We have 3 small initiatives in mind: 1) To begin, through microloan, to teach some youth from Korah to raise chickens; 2) To begin, through teaching women jewelry making skills, how to make jewelry which they can sell, and 3) To begin teaching the children of Korah, especially those who attend the Great Hope Church, the English language, which will prepare them for jobs in the future. Our first small goal is to help the “Saturday Only” school become a “Friday and Saturday” school. The big picture is to have this as a 4-5 day / week school.

Wow! Want more? In addition to this, talks have begun with a clean water initiative based in Ethiopia called LifeWater. LifeWater plans to come out to Korah to survey the land to dig a well on the grounds of the Great Hope Church. LifeWater teaches people to maintain the well, sanitary & hygiene practices through the Gospel message. The major hurdle we have here is that Great Hope Church currently rents the land they are on, so, it must get purchased. We are looking into making this happen!

Even more: Talks have begun with another Team Member about teaming up with Compassion International to begin sponsoring children in the Korah community through the Great Hope Church.

You know, there is so much going on. See it from my perspective for a moment: 1 month ago, virtually NOTHING existed on the internet about Korah and yet, 4-5 weeks later, all of this has happened! So many people say things like “How can I help?” or “Where do we even begin?” or “It’s all so overwhelming, can we do anything that will really make a difference and if so, what?” but you know, it all happens 1 little step at a time. If you don’t believe me, look at what happened through just a few blog posts and the creation of a website! I’m totally excited to see what else will happen.

Well, there’s still more good news: 1) We had another new Team Member and blog follower join the mix today, and 2) I had someone offer to pay for my lodging in Addis this summer! That’s a huge relief, though, I still have about $1,9000 that needs covered. Anyway, this has been such a great day. HelpKorah is quickly becoming a sought after organization and things are growing much faster than I think I can handle. But you know, that’s why we have a “Team” and that’s why, if you think you can help, you should! All you really have to embody is a willing spirit, I am confident that the rest will fall into play.

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