Friday, June 8, 2012

N = Needs

While the fundraising went very well for the past month, there were also people who asked what things we would need for M*rkus. We still have about $500 to go with the fundraising, but we want to take this time to let you know about some other needs and desires that you might be able to fill for M*rkus' visit in a few weeks.

Items Needed:
Socks Underwear -- Okay, this may be more of a gift certificate to WalMart/Target kind of an item.
Night Lights -- Because of experiences, many of these children are afraid of the dark.
MP3 Player that charges by USB -- cheap, cannot be name brand
Christian Music for MP3 Player -- age attractive beat
Shoes -- Again, this may be a gift certificate thing. WalMart?
Bicycle -- even if we can borrow one to be returned when he leaves
Bicycle Helmet -- not sure of size
28" suitcase on wheels that can be a carry-on bag

Batteries -- pack of AA and pack of AAA (These are like gold!)
Playing Cards and/or Uno
Alarm Clock
Flashlight -- To take to bed.
Velcro Wallet
Cheap Watch -- no brand names
Wildlife Story Teller (Latvian) --

Please post a comment or contact us directly if you choose to provide any of these things so that we might avoid doubles.

Fundraising Opportunities:
Pancake Breakfast at Applebee's Mooresville
July 7th from 7:00 AM to 10:00 AM
Tickets can be purchased in advance for $7 each.
Comment here or contact one of us directly.
Please invite drag your friends!

500 Game
For less than $5, you can help support the cause!  
Please visit this page on Facebook to see how.

We will also be looking to share fun activities with M*rkus on a budget.  Do you have access to free passes or reeeeallly good discounts to family friendly places like zoos, movies, amusement parks, anything?  Hey, it does not hurt to ask, right?

Thank you for taking the time to read this.  We appreciate any help any way that it can be given, and please share on Facebook, Tweet, post on your blog, tell your friends, whatever you can do to help.  We appreciate you!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

M = M*rkus

How funny is it that I struggled for so long over what topic to choose for the letter M, and now here is M*rkus with so many people asking questions. Here I can answer some questions and maybe fill you in on a few things.

For anybody who is not in the loop, my guys and I will be hosting a boy from Latvia this summer. His name is M*rkus, and he is eleven years old.  M*rkus, like many of the hundreds or thousands of children in Eastern Europe, is an orphan. For these children, that is a negative stigma. People look at orphans as criminals, and their hope for their futures is slim.

These orphan children are aged out of the system at age sixteen and are turned out onto the street, after which over 80% of them will fall prey to homelessness, drugs, prostitution, lives of crime, and suicide. Many of them feel left out, unworthy, left behind.

And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me. -Matthew 18:5

With New Horizons for Children, many of these children are given HOPE. Through NHFC, families, like ours, host children from Latvia and Ukraine for about five weeks at a time twice a year when the orphanages close. Yes, the orphanages close. That confounds me, but that is another story.

A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling. -Psalm 68:5

Through NHFC, children are brought to the United States of America where they will live as a part of a functioning, Christian FAMILY. They will experience LOVE, enjoy fun and LAUGHTER, go to church, do the things that the families do.  All the while, these children will be learning English.  This is a skill that can help them with A FUTURE.

It is said that during the five weeks that they are here, the children will learn as much English as they would learn in four or five years at school back home.  In Eastern Europe, many of the countries speak English as a second language, not Latvian or Ukrainian.  Thus, by learning English and strengthening their skills in that language, these children are able to broaden their future possibilities.

Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these. -Matthew 19:14

Additionally, these children will learn more about the love of God, they will learn that they are not alone, they will learn self-esteem, and so many more positive things that they may be missing living at orphanages and foster homes.

If you have any questions about M*rkus, about NHFC, or about this program, please feel free to ask.  We will do our best to answer. Meanwhile, please be praying for all of the children, and the host families, and the program and everyone involved in making this opportunity a reality for the over 180 children coming to America in a few weeks.

You are invited to join this group on Facebook to follow our journey with M*rkus.

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. -James 1:27