You’ve probably received our letters before discussing our upcoming missions trip to Cambodia. Well here it is for 2017!
The details: we’ll spend a week with the Grace & Peace Gals (www.graceandpeacegals.blogspot.com) in Phnom Penh working with Agape International Mission (www.agapewebsite.org). This is the anti-trafficking group we have worked with before. We’ll probably see 300 community members, 100 staff and over 100 students in their English school. More importantly, we’ll spend some good quality time supporting Kimberly, Becki and Rachel.
After that we’ll fly to northern Thailand to work with David and Lorna Joannes from Within Reach Global (www.withinreachglobal.org). David is from Prescott but has spent the last 20 years on the mission field in China, Philippines (where Lorna is from) and Thailand working with unreached people groups. I met them when we first moved to Prescott and they are the real deal when it comes to pioneer missionaries. Check out David’s book “The Space Between Memories” on Amazon.
We will head to the Thailand/Myanmar (Burma) border to work with the Karen people; refugees from Myanmar. These folks were the impetus for the plot of Rambo 4 released in 2008. Christian missionaries want to go upriver to help them escape the rape and plunder from the Burma government so they hire Rambo to show them the way. We won’t be doing that.
This year we have another couple going with us: Allan and Alison Crary. They’ve been in our home group (aka small group aka community group aka missional group) for a couple of years. Alison is an occupational therapist and the Gals have been mentioning they would love an OT to come help their staff know how to work with folks with special needs. Allan owns a construction company and is willing to do anything…”I’ll even shovel horse poop if I need to.”
I’d like to share two stories with you: We met Brandon a few years ago in Siem Reap, Cambodia. He was supervising AIM’s employment center where they give rescued women a useful skill and meaningful work in order to support themselves. Brandon’s from Cali and met his English wife in the UK while they were both in a traveling dance troupe (no joke). He’s one of the best storytellers I’ve ever met. Not sure I’ll ever forget the recounting of his vasectomy in Bangkok. Anyway: their daughter, India, is the cutest 7 year old and has an eye turn….she’s cross eyed.
I evaluated her and recommended surgery. Long story short they wanted to get it done in America but the price tag on a missionary budget was borderline impossible. I got back home from our trip and went to my Lions club board and told them the story. They approved $4000 on the spot. It took dozens of emails between myself, Brandon, a few potential surgeons and their schedulers but India was able to have her surgery in mid December 2016 in Florida!
My other story is about Kemhang. He’s a little younger than our Lilly (age 9) and we met him a couple of years ago in Svay Pak where AIM has its English school. Kemhang was well known to the school staff because he was a bit of a troublemaker and there was some thought he may be mentally disabled. Turns out the kid is extremely farsighted and simply couldn’t see. We got him glasses and his behavior immediately improved and he’s made great strides in his schooling. Now when we go back I have a 3 pack of glasses just for Kehmang. He’s still a young boy so they’re going to get broken. The glasses are super thick but we keep the lens shape small to reduce the thickness and bug eyed appearance.
Our living room is full of about 1000 pairs of eyeglasses, school supplies they can’t get in Cambodia, prescription eye drops and a bunch of suitcases.
If you’d be so kind as to donate to the supplies fund we’d be eternally grateful. Eyes4Life is our sponsoring organization and they are a 501(c)3 qualifying charity so contributions are tax deductible.
3217 Jack Drive
Prescott, AZ 86305
Donate online with PayPal at http://www.eyes4life.org
We can’t thank you enough for your continued, ongoing, prayerful support. –Jon & Stacy