"Jesus went throughout Galilee... preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every disease and sickness among the people." - Matthew 4:23
In the photo above is Dr. Stacey Hatcher, a medical doctor/internist from Texas and the Chairman of the Board of Open Arms International US. Stacey regularly leads medical teams to Eldoret, Kenya and to the Open Arms Village.
We are getting very excited at the progress of the Medical Resource Building (MRB) in the Open Arms Village. We will have our very first permanent medical clinic for our community and for the Village completed in the first half of 2017 and officially open for business in the fall of next year.
Over the past ten years, Open Arms has conducted temporary mobile medical camps in and around the greater Eldoret area. This past August alone, in the Kipkaren slum, a medical team from the UK treated 3,500 people over a four-day period. The need for quality and dependable healthcare in Kenya is great. In addition to meeting this medical need, we always share God's love through Jesus with those who attend our medical camps.
When our MRB clinic opens we will continue to proclaim the gospel of God's Kingdom and His love for people through Jesus. We will do everything we can to save people physically, but we will also do everything we can to reach them spiritually; when the day comes and their bodies give out, they will be alive with Jesus in heaven.
Your gifts to Open Arms are changing lives every day and in every way. When our MRB opens, thousands of lives will be touched and changed with God's healing hands through doctors and through Jesus.
Please consider a gift to Open Arms today. We can't do this without you and we need your support more now than ever before.
Open Arms is focused on preserving life and sharing abundant life through Jesus Christ.
Co-founder, Open Arms International
#GivingTuesday - Together, We Can Provide "Shoes that Grow" and Food for Hungry Children
Today is #GivingTuesday - a global day of giving fueled by the power of social media and collaboration. Last year, over 700,000 people combined efforts and raised over $116,000,000 across 70 countries. Will you partner with us today?
For $15, you can supply a pair of "shoes that grow" that will last for up to 5 years.
Your $100 gift will supply 6 pairs of shoes to children who will not have to suffer jigger infestation.
The cost of a meal to feed a hungry child is only .34!
Your $25 gift will feed 73 children, a $75 gift will feed 220 children!
Kevin's Journey - Part 1
Kevin was a homeless orphan. Life on the street was hard. He worked when he could, hoping to find shelter each night. Daily, he foraged for food.
Kevin's life became more complicated when a jigger burrowed into the sole of his foot and laid its eggs, creating a festering sore. Infection spread throughout his foot and Kevin was in danger of losing it.
As his pain increased, Kevin could no longer walk and began crawling to get from place to place. He knew of no way to get help for himself and his hope for life waned along with his strength. Somehow, Kevin obtained prescription medicine and considered using it to end his life. Then, God sent Leah to him. She discovered what he was about to do and convinced him not to take his life.
Though Leah tried conscientiously to treat Kevin's foot, it became worse. She heard that Open Arms International was holding a medical clinic in Kambi Teso, which was a few miles from her home in Kipkaren. She knew that she had to get Kevin to the clinic.
When he arrived, the medical team attended to him immediately, cleaning and dressing the wound. The medical team was very concerned for Kevin's prospects of recovery. They concluded that a surgical procedure would be necessary, yet funds for surgery were not available. Therefore, passing the hat amongst themselves, they collected the necessary funds needed for the procedure. Kevin's surgery was scheduled and performed successfully, right away.
Kevin needed a home as well as continuing medical care. Open Arms Village took him in as well as cared for his wounds. Today, he is fully recovered.
While it may not seem like much, a simple pair of shoes could have prevented Kevin from getting jiggers. There are many children in the slums of Kenya without shoes. They are vulnerable to cuts, scrapes...and jiggers like Kevin.
Please give a gift today to help us raise $38,500. When you do, you will be providing over 100,000 meals AND 300 pairs of shoes for the children who desperately need it! Thank you for partnering with us; together we can give HOPE to children who have none.
“YOU HAVE TURNED FOR ME MY MOURNING INTO DANCING...
I CAN’T KEEP QUIET ABOUT YOU. GOD, MY GOD, I CAN’T THANK YOU ENOUGH.” PSALM 30:11,12 (NIV & THE MESSAGE)
With Rachel and I spending the majority of each year living in Kenya, we continue to be extremely grateful for you and for how God has shown His goodness to us and to Open Arms through you.
Between November 1620 and November 1621, in a lengthy diary famously known as Mourt’s Relation, one early Pilgrim father, Edward Winslow, wrote about the bountiful provisions the Pilgrims were being blessed with. He wrote, “And although it be not always so plentiful as it was at this time with us, yet by the goodness of God, we are so far from want that we often wish you partakers of our plenty.”
I believe, this Thanksgiving, that even though some seasons in our lives show more provision and blessing than others, that we, like Edward Winslow would be able to say, “….yet by the goodness of God, we are so far from want that we often wish you partakers of our plenty.”
We want you, our supporters and donors, in a small way, to be partakers of our plenty in the Open Arms Village. We hope that you can take away something from these simple photos and words of thankfulness from some of our children. Even though these photos and words won’t fill your tummy, we hope, in some small way, that they might just fill your soul.
David & Rachel Gallagher
Founders, Open Arms International
"CHILDREN ARE A GIFT FROM THE LORD; THEY ARE A REWARD FROM HIM." - Psalm 127:3
If children are a gift from the Lord, then we are blessed beyond measure. Children are the gift that keeps giving when it comes to the Open Arms Village.
If children are a reward from Him, then we must be doing something right because we are rewarded over and over when more babies come to our Baby Home.
Rachel and I never dreamed we would have babies in the Open Arms Village. We thought it would be easier to introduce children three years old and up into our Village. But when we got the phone calls within weeks of each other to take 29-day-old Belle and five-month-old Diana in as infants, we couldn't say "No." We heard God saying "Yes"...the rest is history!
The babies kept coming. Then a couple from the UK, Chris and Linda Richardson, learned that we needed a place to care for our babies, and they provided the funds to build our Baby Home. If that wasn't enough, when our capacity got stretched because of the number of babies, Grace Point Church in Tigard, Oregon, provided the resources to expand the Baby Home. We are at capacity with 15 babies - truly a blessing!
Momma Rachel is a wonderful Mommy to the babies in the Open Arms Village. She is a pediatric intensive care nurse for good reason - she loves babies and children, and they thrive under her care. Rachel makes sure the Baby Home has everything it needs to provide for our babies. When they get sick, she's right there to nurse them back to health. The Baby Home is the best place in the entire Open Arms Village!
Your donations to Open Arms International are so appreciated. Your support allows us to treat our children like the gifts and rewards from the Lord that they are. On behalf of the babies in our care who would otherwise not have a voice, thank you! This Thanksgiving, please know how thankful we are for you.
Thanking God for YOU this Thanksgiving,
Co-founder, Open Arms International
#Giving Tuesday - November 29th
This year, our #GivingTuesday campaign will benefit the programs operating in the Kambi Teso slum. Poverty runs rampant, leaving thousands who live there without life's basic necessities. Due to the extreme need in this area, Open Arms operates three outreach programs. We hope you will join us in providing 100,000 meals and 300 pairs of shoes to the children living in this poverty. Below are stories from the Kambi Teso programs.
Open Arms Feeding Program
Nancy came to Open Arms feeding program in the slums malnourished and sick. Due to neglect, she rarely had anything to eat. Our staff tended to her needs diligently, and now Nancy is getting the nutrition she needs! Her health has improved tremendously, and we are excited to keep watching her progress.
Children at the Early Childhood Development Center
Halima, Ian and Rosa have not attended school before. Can you imagine their excitement for the first day of school? A new uniform, shoes, book bag, school supplies- what an amazing gift from people who believe in them! They want you to know how wonderful school is and how hard they are working to do a good job and make you proud! Thank you!
Because of you, the women's mentoring program has grown and empowered women to share help and hope. The women in our Kambi Teso mentoring program recently decided to invest in their community. In addition to learning a trade skill to support their family and attending their classes and mentoring meetings, they have started up a visitation program for the local widows. What little they have, they want to share. This is how hope affects a community! Thank you for giving a contagious hope to the women of Kambi Teso.
A Medical Mission Story - Mwana
Mwana, a 100-year-old resident of the Kipkaren slum first met Open Arms International in 2014 at a medical clinic. This year, a large medical team from the United Kingdom was able to set up a clinic in Kipkaren again.
Excited about the potential relief from chest pain and an eye problem, Mwana eagerly set out to attend the 2016 Kipkaren Medical Clinic. However, this year, she made sure to bring family and friends with her, knowing they would receive high quality, compassionate care from Open Arms volunteers and staff.
We were thrilled to treat Mwana and learn that people living in the Kipkaren slum value and look forward to OAI's assistance. She is very grateful for what Open Arms does for the community of Kipkaren.
Below you can view her interview with our staff member, Daniel:
A Child's perspective - Rachel working in the Medical Clinic
Helping at the medical clinic was interesting to me. I worked at the nursing station and learned a lot. There were many patients suffering from different illnesses - many of them were women and children. Some patients came to the clinics with severe wounds. On the first day, I didn't want to see any of it. On the second day, I wanted to leave the nursing station, but courage arose in me. I found myself going back to the same station because my heart hurt for these people. The largest lesson I learned during the clinic was the importance of maintaining high standards of hygiene, how to attend to an injured person, and above all I learned that if you want to be a doctor or a nurse you must be ready to serve. Surely, being a doctor is a calling, and not just a dream.
Rachael came to Open Arms Village in January 2009. Orphaned at a young age, Rachel had been living with her elderly grandmother, who was unable to care for Rachel. At Open Arms Village, Rachel has grown up in a loving home with Kenyan parents. She has been given a quality education, nutritious food and clean water, health care and medicine, and the joy of being safe and secure. Rachel wants to be a surgeon when she grows up.
A Note from our Executive Director
I just received this photo - the one on the right - and I just had to share.
This is three-year-old Duncan. Together, with his five-year-old brother Gracious and a stray dog, he was living in a hole in the side of a hill in a slum called Kambi Teso, near Eldoret, Kenya. Their parents are dead and they burrowed the hole to live in when they had to leave their house. That's where we found them and brought them to Open Arms Village this past spring. They were bloated with malnutrition and their bodies were full of parasites.
I think the picture of Duncan on the right says all that need be said. I am so grateful to God for the support that allows us to continue rescuing these precious children.
Thank you for all you do to Transform Africa, One Life At A Time! Just in 2016, we've added over 15 children at Open Arms Village. More rescued children means OAI needs additional sponsors. At this time, we need 55 sponsors to be at 90%. Will you help us?
You can sponsor a child!
Learn more here: www.openarmsinternational.org/sponsorship-application
You can share about your sponsorship experience with your friends and at your church. Learn more here: www.openarmsinternational.org/give-a-child-hope
Because People Matter to God,
Teams in Kenya
We're very excited about our current team in Kenya. They are building an Aquaponic Fish Farm. Here is the most recent update: "We are making good progress on leveling and ground preparation. We will begin the metal fabrication and plumping by the end of the week. Tomorrow, we will bring in power and hopefully tap into the water line. Continue praying for favor and success, please. We have an amazing crew of both local workers and volunteers from Oregon. Together, we are making things happen!"
See David Gallagher
This Sunday, October 16th, David Gallagher will be a guest speaker at New Hope Church in Clackamas.
You will have a chance to hear a message from him, as well as learn about his newly released book: Our Daddy Who Art in Heaven. We hope you can join us. Learn more here.