Monday, 30 April 2012

Ford Fundraiser







Yup! You heard right! On Saturday, May 12th we are having a Ford Drive One 4UR Community Fundraiser. It's this really great setup where you come down to the Church office and test drive a brand new car (or truck) around the block and FORD will donate 20$ to BBF. The fundraiser can raise up to $6000.00 (300 test drivers) and we hope that you can all make it down to try out a new car and help out with our fundraising.

You might have also noticed that this is happening the day before Mother's Day, and so you might be busy looking for last minute gifts for the mothers in your life right? Well... it just so happens that we will be selling an array of handmade Thai goods and beautiful hanging flower baskets for the special and deserving moms! And if you are worried about what you're going to do about your children while you are test driving your nice new Ford, we will have a place for kids to hang out and watch some cool movies and make some mother's day cards while they wait for you to return.

If that isn't enough incentive, we will also have delicious BBQ food for you to enjoy which will be by donation.

So really it's a win-win-win for all of us! Can't wait to see you there! I know I sure am excited to try out a new Ford!!

Building Pig Pens with the kids in 2010

Digging latrines

Adding much needed drainage

Look at that focus!

Great News!

I am happy to announce that we have indeed started meeting and planning our 2012 Thailand BBF Trip but of course if there is anybody who is interested in going or volunteering some fundraising ideas we’d love to talk to you.

Before you make any decisions though, you are probable wondering, “what do they do on these trips"? That’s a hard one to answer because no two trips are ever really the same and a lot of things come up while you’re there, but here’s a quick summary of what’s gone on in trips from the past:

2004: The Beginning.
This trip was the introduction to Baan Burk Faa Children’s Home. When New Heights Church first got connected with the family of thirty children living with one caring family. The kids were malnourished and weak, not even able to complete a full game of soccer. Much relief work was done by a team of 12 

2004:                                   Installing a latrine
The original group of kids 

2005: A team of 18 brought trampoline (in pieces which many fellow travellers thought were dinorsaour bones) and much more work was done on the BBF home. 

The Trampoline!

2006: Another  team of 12, led by Chad and Tamara Umlah, visited the home villages of the BBF orphans and relinquished kids

Smiles! :D

2007: Two teams of 10 each brought funds and a truck to transport kids to school was bought.

The Truck in Action!

2008: This year was all about reaching out to other homes. We had a 28 persons  and so we were able to split up into two smaller teams and take some of the BBF kids up into the hills so that we could visit some villages with them. This is also the year that the kids first started planting rice. While we were there we got to help the kids plant their first patty of rice that would end up feeding them for months to come, some of which they brought to other homes to share the wealth.

At the River                        Harvesting Rice

2009: A team of 14 travelled to BBF celebrated five years of friendship.This trip was about building relationships with the kids, spending time with them and taking them on outings including buying a shelter for another group of kids in the town of Phrao which the BBF leadership was trying to help. We were able to plan church services for the kids and reach out to them. We also had an awesome multi-home soccer tournament involving 6 teams from different homes. It was incredible to see the kids so happy when we were able to give them a great big bag full of cleats and pinnies (thanks to you guys for the wonderful donations)

Muddiest Soccer Ever

2010: Finally, the BBF home was beginning to acquire its own land! This year we were able to actually step foot on the land being leased for the home. It was an absolutely amazing experience, we got to pray over the land and see the plans of where everything is being built and we were even able to lend a helping hand in building pig pens to house the pigs donated by Hatzic Elementary’s “Me to We” club.

Piggies on the Land!

2011: We had a lot of questions in 2011 as we were taking the big step of obtaining land, and so this trip consisted of a lot of meetings and notes and planning for a big future with huge dreams for the home!

Beautiful Thailand

2012: Which brings us to now..
Depending on whether or not the road is finished when we arrive will definitely change the realities of this trip, as having a road into the property makes a lot of things, like building, more obtainable. We will also be working with our first graduate of the home on his transitioning plan from high school to beyond.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

A Week To Celebrate!

          A lot of children, after spending time at the BBF home in Chiang Mai, leave the home for various reasons. Although we hate to see them go, we realise that there isn’t much we can do about it except teach them about God and know that they will always have Him by their side. In tribal culture, it is common for children to drop out of high school or to never even attend in the first place; their education being interrupted by the pressure to provide for their next of kin through poorly paid agricultural work, or the pressure to be "married" in return for a monetary benefit. Because of this reality, it is very uncommon to have a tribal student graduate from high school and when one does it’s a big deal. This week we are very proud to announce that Jayo, the oldest boy of the home, responsible for driving many of the children to school and back, and maintaining the land, overcame the pressures to drop out and is graduating from high school! We are so filled with joy and excitement at this news and can’t wait to see him again to shoot him some hugs and high fives!

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This is Jayo representing canada (left) and his profile pic from 2007 (right)

         Jayo is one of the leaders of the home and is a real mentor to a lot of the younger children, especially the boys. He is planning (and hoping) that he will eventually be able to attend University where he wants to study the bible to become a pastor. He dreams of one day returning to the villages where he and his friends are from and spread the word of Jesus to all of his people to try and make positive changes in the culture and lifestyle.

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Jayo carrying food onto the land for the pigs this past summer

We feel so blessed to be a part of this amazing story and we would like to thank you for all of your influence too. None of this would be possible without your countless generosities and prayers (keep up the good work!).

We are working on getting a donate now button so that you will soon be able to donate without even leaving the comfort of your computer (dontcha just love technology? ) :D 

Thursday, 16 February 2012

The Cupcake Miracle

Throughout the years the Mai Mission team from Mission, BC have collaborated with the Children’s home in Chiang Mai to brainstorm new ideas that the kids can use in order to make their own money for the home. In Thailand most of the groceries are sourced locally and sold at markets and bazaars, and because of this many of the past ideas have involved agriculture. They grow their own rice and manage to harvest enough to eat, with excess being shared with other homes, and sold for seedlings for next years crop. They’ve also spent time raising pigs to sell and breed on their new land, but without a road, pigs are a difficult resource to maintain. They’ve also grown and sold vegetables and fruit and even handmade goods have been a source of income for them, making tourist items such as purses and fisherman’s pants.
Piggies on the land in 2010

To continue these endevours we’ve incorporated a lot of these resources into the land planning. Rice fields, fruit orchards and vegetable gardens each have a planned space on the new land, along with workshops to house welders, carpentry tools and sewing machines to help the kids learn important skills that can be used to make money, but with the kids getting older and with university on the horizon, it just wasn’t enough. That’s when the cupcake miracle happened.

Some examples of their finery

Last summer the kids ventured into a whole new territory: Catering. With the help of Raelene (our agent, Dominik’s, wife) the kids learned to bake a whole array of interesting and delicious cupcakes. Using only natural ingredients such as dragon fruit and papaya they are able to create beautiful tastey cupcakes in amazing colours, and they best part is, they SELL! These children have been able to bring home upwards of 500$ CAD per month giving them the ability to pay for important necessities like school supplies and car repairs, even giving them the ability to bless others. They were able to help out a friend, twelve year old Pataima, who used to be in the home but had to return to her home village about a year ago. She didn’t have enough money for a school uniform and they were able to reach out and lend a helping hand.

Where it started

 In 2004 a team from New Heights Church in Mission, B.C. went to Thailand on a mission. They weren’t sure what they were looking for, they just wanted to help. They ended up connecting with a home of 33 tribal children being taken care of by one loving family.  The children were weak and hungry, not even able to complete a soccer game. With these children as inspiration they decided to make a ten year plan. These children deserved a chance at life and they were making it their mission to give them one.
The original group of kids in 2004

        As the project continued, a lot of things had to change. They were moved into a different home, and fundraising was done to get them a new truck to use for going to school and the market. In 2008 the kids started planting their own rice, growing enough to feed the home, pay for seedlings for next harvest, and were even able to share rice with other children’s homes.
The kids harvesting rice

          Seeing the impact rice had on the home, the team from New Heights made the decision to help BBF lease land. Land would give them the opportunity to get citizenship, which is required for many things in Thailand, including university enrollment and passport obtainment.  Aside from providing them a place to live, this land would give them space in which to grow rice and other crops to feed them and to sell at the market, along with areas for breeding pigs and fish,
Rice fields and the path to the land
Building Pig Pens on the land in 2010
Pigs need shelter too.. Thatching!! 

Next step: a road in!