Update March 2016

This month marks one year since we returned to Kenya.  In some ways it seems that we just arrived, and in other ways it feels like we never left.  It has been a busy, but productive year.  We are very happy with our day to day life, the routines that we have established, and the progress with our work and ministry goals.  Life is good and we are thankful for it.

 

Family News:

The kids are both doing extremely well.  Sophie is still loving school.  She has mastered most of her sight words and is beginning to read books on her own, which is something that she is very excited about.  She most enjoys her Art and Science classes and amazes us with the things she is learning and applying.  She has continued to take ballet class one afternoon a week, but has decided to take a break from Saturday soccer….a decision Dad fully supports, but is a little sad about. 🙂 She is continuing to grow into her naturally sensitive and compassionate personality.

       Sophie in her ballet class…   

Ethan has recently gone through a growth spurt and, suddenly, no longer seems like a baby anymore.  In the last few months he has taught himself to ride a pedal bike and can now keep up with Sophie with ease.  When he rode for the first time, we were shocked, since he is only 3 yrs., but we attribute his rapid development to the balance bike he has used for the last year.  Riding his bike is his absolute favorite thing to do.  He is very excited to start pre-school next year, and has started asking a lot of questions about when he will get to go to school.


     Ethan riding his bike…  

 Jessica planned and oversaw an Alumni Weekend event at Rosslyn the first week of January, so when it was finished we decided to spend a few days at the Kenyan Coast in Watamu, Kenya.  It was a wonderful and much needed holiday, one that made us realize that we haven’t taken advantage of having the Indian Ocean nearby nearly enough!  We also spent a weekend camping with great friends in Naivasha in February.  We try to keep a good balance between our mission and People to People work, Jessica’s work at Rosslyn, the kids school and lives, and spending quality time as a family.  Taking advantage of the beauty of Kenya is part of that!

 

                                                          Daddy and kiddos exploring the river….                         Camping with friends…

         
       Family Ethiopian Lunch…
       

                                                                         Riding a camel in Watamu…                       Watamu Beach, Malindi, Kenya…

We did have a bit of a rough patch in January and February with different sicknesses going through our house.  Sophie suffered from two different bacterial infections and then had an intense allergic reaction (skin rash) to her antibiotic that stuck with her for a week.  Ethan was also sick a couple of different times with stomach viruses.  Jamie suffered from a really nasty food related bacterial infection that left him 15-20 pounds lighter, as well as a viral cold that had been going around.  Jessica also picked up that same cold virus (and passed it on to Jamie).  Sickness is a part of life, regardless of where you live, but we are thankful that we seem to be moving past that season….at least for now.

                                                                               


People to People and Ministry:

We have had a great start to the year with our ministry and projects.  As many of you know, we returned to Kenya with a goal of investing in income-generating projects to help sustain the feeding programs we work with, as well as in developing a micro-finance loan program.  We are happy to report that we have seen great progress in both of these areas within the last few months.

 Micro-finance Launch in Ethiopia

In early March Jamie returned to Ethiopia to launch the micro-finance loan program with a group of pastors there.  He met with the leadership of the church in Ethiopia and decided to launch the program on a small scale with a group of 15 pastors.  Each pastor was given a loan to invest into starting, or growing, a small business that will generate income to help sustain their families.  Each applicant submitted a detailed plan, and we are excited about the types of businesses that are going to be started because of these micro-loans….chicken/egg farming, cattle farming, sheep rearing, shiro powder processing (an essential spice in Ethiopian cuisine), roadside shops, and even a single chair village barber shop!  Our prayer is that at the conclusion of this year, the loans will be repaid (with no interest) and we can then extend the program to include many others.  These pastors are great men and women that pour themselves into their churches and ministries, and they are all farmers and agriculturists, but they all long to provide a good life for their families.  Our prayer is that this micro-finance loan program will be a great step towards helping them do that.  We have hired an assistant that will report on each applicant’s progress each quarter, and Jamie will return every 6 months to visit each one.  Developing the program and creating all of the requirements, payment schedules, loan agreements, and business plans has been a lot of work, but we are excited and hopeful about the potential that this program has for the future.

   
                  One of the loan recipients…                   With the leaders of the church…

      
    Bishop Desalegn and Ledia are using loan for a chicken project…    

      All of the loan recipients in meeting with Jamie…

 

 Odhole Village Trips

Odhole is a remote village that is located in the Tana River Delta in the Eastern part of Kenya.  The only way to access the village (without getting wet) is to use the local river taxi.  A few local missionaries have started a school and feeding program in the village, which is a predominantly Muslim community.  Heavy rains in December resulted in serious flooding issues for the community and school.  Through the People to People Disaster Relief Fund we were able to assist with food relief, temporary homes, and rebuilding the flooded choo (long-drop toilet).  Following the intense season of heavy rains, a new problem developed.  The standing water mixed with the intense heat provided the perfect breeding ground for mosquitos.  Malaria is always a concern in this area, but the risk has increased greatly due to the abundance of mosquitos this season.  In February, Jamie returned to Odhole with Kenyan missionary Lucy Chengo to distribute 300 mosquito nets to the children at the school, as well as to host a meal for the community.  We were able to do provide this due to the generosity of some very good friends that completely funded the entire project.  We can never say enough how much we appreciate all of you that make our work possible!


                       The village of Odhole…                     

    
             The Odhole river taxi…                       Loaded down with 300 mosquito nets…


                Jamie with some of the children with their nets…               
    
    The children at the school…                           Children with their new nets…

 

 Calvary Christian Classroom Project

Speaking of generous partners…..we were recently able to assist Calvary Christian Preparatory School in Ruai with their growing student population with a permanent stone floor for the temporary mabati (iron sheet) classrooms they recently constructed, thanks to a very generous partner.  Our hope is to also paint the new building soon to make it a beautiful and welcoming space for the children.   We are also very happy to report that he chicken sustainability project is continuing to do very well and provides much needed income for the feeding program!

   
  New Classrooms with completed floor…          Ethan helping Eunice feed the chickens…

                  Rosslyn Academy SEW

Jamie (and a few of his “friends”) had the opportunity to be the guest speaker at Rosslyn Academy’s Spiritual Emphasis Week this year.  It was fun and exciting for him to connect with the kids, speak into their lives, and return to the place where he taught for 5 years.

    

        “Steve the Snake Hunter” talking to the kids…         .”J.D. the Country Boy”

                      

                                       “Grandpa Herb”                      “Grandpa Herb” talking with the kids..

 Updates You May Have Missed

Just in case you missed it, you can see our Christmas Project update by clicking here.  You can also read about Jamie’s trip to South Sudan and the micro-finance loan project we started in Lokichoggio, Kenya, in November by clicking here.


Sustainable Development Project Updates:

Hosanna Children’s Home Tilapia Pond
The fish pond at Hosanna is going well, though unfortunately, we lost many of the tilapia.  The cause is unknown and they were unable to determine exactly what happened.  The catfish are still growing and doing well, and hopefully they will be ready for market within the next couple of months.  Jamie constructed a bio-filter to help keep the pond healthy and oxidized, in hopes that the same problem will not happen again.  The funds generated will help support the feeding program and educational fees for the children at Hosanna Children’s Home.    

   
      Stocking the pond with fingerlings…  

                                                                  

   Biofilter Jamie built using local materials….

Nakuru CMD Farm Project

We are excited to announce that we are moving forward with the food production project for Christian Ministries to the Destitute in Nakuru.  In early March, Jamie visited the plots of land in Njoro, Kenya, that we have rented to grow maize, beans, and other vegetables.  The potatoes and vegetables have been sown and the maize, beans and peas will be planted within the next few weeks.  We now wait, hope, and pray that the rains will be favorable and the crops will grow well.  This project will provide food for the feeding program, as well as income through vegetables sold in the local market.  Alice (pictured below in brown) is doing an amazing job organizing and planning for this huge project!


The 4-acre plot of land where maize and beans will be planted…

      
       Alice showing potato growth…              The nursery with the vegetables…

        

     Ethan, Joe, Alice, and Gladys…                     The plot for vegetables…

If you are interested in supporting other projects like these, you can use the information below: 

For Credit/Debit Card Support:

Sus. Dev. Project Acct. #11504P
:
http://donations.iphc.org/projects/sustainable-development-for-feeding-programs

Support Mailing Address:
IPHC-World Missions Ministries
PO Box 12609
Oklahoma City, OK

ATTN: James and Jessica Dunning
(Make Checks payable to IPHC)

Sus. Dev. Project Acct. #11504P (Memo Line)


More Pics:
(Because everybody loves pictures of the kids)

    
            Hiking in Karura Forrest…          Ethan on a matatu working with Daddy…

    
Fun at the pool…       

    
                  Picnic with friends..                              Daddy-Daughter Valentine’s Date…

                                                                                                 Mommy-Buddy V-Day Date…                   Day hike at Mt. Lonogonot…      

  
Kayaking in Turtle Bay, Watamu, Kenya…    Ethan passing out candy…    

    

             Rosslyn Academy Sports Day…             Ethan was excited to run in the toddler race…

Sophie running the 400m race…


Prayer Requests  
  • That we would love God and others as He loves us, and that we will be faithful in all the areas that He is calling us.
  • For continued direction, favor, and wisdom in our ministry.
  • For our marriage to grow stronger every day.
  • For Sophie and Ethan…that they will feel a meaningful connection to our ministry and that they both will grow to love and serve Jesus.
  • For the Nation of Kenya, and the individuals, ministries, and churches we support.
  • For our extended families as they adjust back to life without us and the kids.
  • For good health, safety and protection. 
Can we pray for you?  Please send us your requests at jamandjessdunning@gmail.com

                                                                      

We love and appreciate you all!  Your support, prayers, and encouragement mean everything to us.  Thank you for partnering with us.
  Grace and Peace,

                                                                   

 

Philippians 1:3-6: I thank my God every time I remember you.  In all of my prayers for all of you.  I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion, until the day of Christ Jesus.

Opportunity to Give/Support:

As always, we are looking for opportunities to expand our network of partners.  If you are currently one of our partners, would you prayerfully consider sharing about our ministry with your friends and family?  We would love to have open doors into new churches, small groups, and home groups.  If you have friends, family, or contacts that you feel may be interested in learning about our vision for outreach in Kenya, please let us know.

Click here for more details about our ministry.

Interested in becoming a Partner?

You can make a donation or become monthly supporter by clicking here.  Information for mailing checks can be found at the bottom of this newsletter.

 

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