One day I pray I may say… the visas were granted and returned expediently.
But so far, in ten years of living in Nigeria, traveling in and out too many times to be counted, it is sad to say that we have NEVER ever, not one person, received they correct visa applied for and in the appropriate amount of time.
So we continue to wade through politics and lack of civility to acquire entry to “our” other home and country where our children and staff family are. We know that God must have a plan in all of this, after so many years to struggle still. Yet we remain committed and steadfast toward our projects and our love of the people and desire to make a difference. We will not let poor attitudes and judgment keep us away from the work God would have us do, no matter how hard the struggle remains to be.
We have hope, and faith … that one day, Nigeria will be a much better, stronger and peaceful place, a nation that loves its own people and desires to help them ALL, to balance the great injustices and inequalities that prevail today, that through justice, love and equality they will begin to heal themselves and show the world a much different side, one that TWCF knows is there, but that most others in the world cannot ever see or know of, the side of HOPE, RESILIENCE AND BROTHERLY LOVE.
We now also have a new Governor in Abia State. Unfortunately we cannot be proud of Abia for its election processes. Abia, along with Imo (and a few other states), had very poor elections processes intertwined with violence and corruption. As a matter of fact the first set election was cancelled and it had to be held a second time. While the first one was contested, the second one also is being contested. It would seem aside that fact that the newly elected Governor had majority votes, he was not truly the peoples choice. It is very difficult to run elections and be a politician of the people ushering in much needed change and reform, when greed and corruption are so heavily intertwined.
We pray strength and wisdom on the current and new leaders transitioning in over the next month. We pray honesty and humbleness. We pray health and virtue. And we pray passion and compassion toward the people of our state, and our country, that our leaders would identify themselves only as a “Nigerian”, just as the people they SERVE are, while they are in office, and through that would make the best changes possible. We have had enough divisiveness and hatred toward one another due to political preference, religion, denomination, socio-economic status, gender, tribe, career/job status, financial status…etc, the list goes on. We must see each other as fellow Nigerians, as one, and start healing our nation.
It is dry season, and the heat is intense. It is only when harmattan blows that there is slight coolness in the air. With harmattan though comes dust which often gives everyone colds. Thank goodness there are oranges in season now and that we discovered ginger root grows in excess here. We keep colds away! A plus to harmattan is that the laundry dries quickly on the line and there are slightly less bugs around.
The children occupy their time once out of lessons, by working in the gardens weeding and water. They are so excited when we have things growing! We keep experimenting with growing different things, hoping we can plant more nutritional foods as well as help sustain our own food intake. It is a work in progress. The children also play cards or games on the porch as well as have various game days were football (soccer), relay races, and bean-bag toss are engaged in. We look forward to having more soccer balls and frisbees come down from Canada!
We are going through water a lot faster also during dry season, as it is so important to keep hydrated, but that is also part of staying healthy!
Our children are doing wonderful! They are healthy and happy, progressing with each day. We thank God that there has been calmness in our village during this election time and that everyone is safe.
The children are growing, getting taller and more helpful as time goes by. They love going to class in the home and are each doing their best in school and daily activities. Behaviours and attitudes continue to be worked on and change through the help, guidance and love of the staff. The new boys we received in February have adjusted very well and have become permanent members of the family, getting along well with all their other siblings and learning English quickly.
Our two girls in the home are still praying regularly that the next children will be girls as they are highly out numbered!
It is just over a month since my last positing, I apologize. There have been many things going on in Nigeria as a country. The prior postponed elections have just taken place, and yesterday General (Rtr.) Muhammadu Buhari was named the President elect. The official hand over from President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan will take place on May 29.
We hope and pray for continued peace among the people of Nigeria as this transition of leaders takes place, and we pray for wisdom and guidance as Buhari steps up to lead Nigeria away from violence and corruption and toward peace, unity and healing.
…When there was a honk at the gate. The Uche Ogah Foundation bus came to visit us last week bringing some much needed food donations. The house was on the last cups of rice when this wonderfully timed donation arrived. The bus came with Ogah Foundation members who visited with the children and spent time playing with them. They left with us much needed items including, yams, bags of rice, boxes of milo, milk, indomie, ground nut oil, soap, and tinned tomatoes. Everyone was so excited to have visitors and to receive these gifts. Thank you!
The elections were officially postponed last week despite the advice against it from the international community. The threat of BkH has grown around it, alleged corruption regarding it, and threats of uprising if either candidate does not win. All of these lead to a continued poor situation that is not promoting safety, truth, or honesty. We pray that during this postponement time, the active threat of BkH will be stopped, with strong action taken against them. We pray safety and hope for all those have have been displaced by the BkH horrific actions. And we pray love, unity and peace for all Nigerians, to joing together and build a better Nigeria, to rise above wrong and survive victoriously.
We seem to be building up a boys army in our children’s home! We are so excited to welcome three new boys to our family. They are around the ages of 9, 6, and 4 yrs approx. They have come from a very sad and deplorible situation. They are suffering severe sympyoms of PTSD as well as being malnourished. These boys do not speak English although they understand bits of it. While they speak Igbo, they are not speaking much at all right now. The staff and other children are doing a good job of welcoming them and helping them feel comfortable and at home, it will just take some time. We are excited and hopefully for the healthy and much happier futures of these darling boys.
It seems it is not the time for us to get a bus. Although in our mind we really need one, God must have a bigger, better and safer plan that we dont know about yet. After trying for the third time to purchase a good condition used bus from within Nigeria, we have still not succeeded. I would say three times is a good amount of tries. We will no longer be trying to purchase a used vehicle over there. Our new tactic is to find the necessary finaces/support to purchase a brand new vehicle from one of the Lagos dealerships, or import our own vehicles from here. Please pray for the needed connections and finances to do either one of these…or that someone over there gives us a new bus.
Trafficking of children and persons has been a long standing issue in Nigeria. We ourselves have some children that have come to us through the NAPTIP Agency that fights against this.
With the more recent devastating attacks of the BkH in the North, North-East, the numbers of INP (Internally Displaced People) has risen drastically. Make shifts camps are being set up in multiple locations, many in Adamawa State. With information from various sources of ours in Nigeria, along with the following article’s claims, it is safe to say that morally corrupt individuals are taking advantage of the horrible situation going on in the North. Children who are coming into these camps, who have no parents, or extended family caring for them, are quickly identified and being sold out of the camps across Nigeria. Please pray for these children. And pray that if there is a way for us to help them or be involved that it would be made clear to us.
INVESTIGATION: Grim tales of rape, child trafficking in Nigeria’s displaced persons camps