Empowerment Retreat

January 22, 2019 – The Empowerment Retreat has begun. The children began arriving yesterday afternoon and early evening. We had introductions and some warm up activities and then something to eat. You can tell they enjoy seeing each other. Despite distances they have remained friends.

It is such a gift to see these “young adults” growing up. Some have stayed focused on their original goals for themselves, some have changed. They are all hopeful for a better future.

The 20 children for this part of the camp are in two groups – those who were here last year and another group for those who are here for the first time. The theme for those here for the second time is: I Know Who I Am… I Can. The first-year group’s theme is the same as last year: I Know Who I Am… I’m Special. They blend well for some large group activities. They are supportive of one another. I so wish all of you could experience their spirit. Those of you who sponsor a child would be proud of their efforts, determination, and dreams. They have also developed a sense of their own self-worth.

These older students are aware they are sponsored by someone in the U.S. They have many questions: How do people have the money to pay for their education? Do we knock on people’s doors to ask for sponsors? Why would someone want to sponsor them even though they do not know them?

One example is our friend, George. He asked me last night if his sponsors, Jim and Hilda, would still sponsor him if he changed his mind about being a president to becoming a footballer. He told everyone that I said “yes!,” and went on his way with a big smile.

I am currently in a session with the older students on goal setting. They have just gathered to share their results of being in small groups, so I will close to participate.

Thanks for your interest in this “adventure!”

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