Friday, December 20, 2013

Water filtration building and thoughts

You can see the water filtration building is taking form. It's encouraging, this concrete (literally) sign of progress - not to mention a great job opportunity for our masons. There's been a lot of progress in the past several months: the children's agriculture program, the continued construction of the girls' domes so that they can finally have a safe and clean place of their own; earlier I sent out a very honest Advent appeal, and your response as supporters was enthusiastic and greatly appreciated. Looking ahead, we're poised to welcome a new director of operations in early January who will work in concert with our new Executive Director stateside, to lend some much-needed help on the structural management side. There are many reasons to be positive, and this blog tries to highlight that between the glimpses of everyday life here.
The bigger picture, however, is much more complex than I can characterize in a single post. We're moving ahead, but in faith rather than security, with hope and prayers rather than concrete assurances that things will be alright a year from now. We've just run out of our stock of fortified rice packages, a major staple for the children's kitchen. We don't have enough food to last the year and purchasing new stock is simply not within our budget - and due to the nature of earmarked funding, we're able to make progress with construction and building projects (a good thing), but will we be able to buy food for the kids? And although we're very encouraged by the wonderful response to our December appeal, we've just received news that a major funding organization will continue downscaling their support next month. These are real challenges.
You, me, the staff and children are part of the ESPWA family, a community of hope and faith.  As we prepare for the feast of Christmas we are profoundly grateful for your help.  On behalf of the children and staff, thank you very much.


Father Marc

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