Update November 2015

Partners and Friends….

As we approach the end of our 7th month back in Kenya, we continue to be amazed at how quickly we have settled back in to life here.  In many ways it feels like we were never gone.  We have been fortunate to reconnect with old friends and ministry partners, as well as develop many new ones.  The last couple of months have allowed us to further establish ourselves in our work, as well continue to get in a groove of what day to day life looks like for us.


Family News:

The kids are both loving our lives here.  Sophie absolutely loves school at Rosslyn Academy.  She amazes us every day with the things she is learning….songs in foreign languages, scientific facts about types of rocks and geodes, memory verses, Kiswahili phrases, sight words, how to “fill peoples’ buckets,” pottery in Art, addition/subtraction….as well as how she continues to develop into a caring, compassionate, and thoughtful child.  She has also learned how to swim during her P.E. class at school.  In addition to school activities, she is playing soccer on Saturday mornings with the Ambassadors Football Club at Rosslyn and taking ballet class one afternoon a week.  We were afraid she may be overextending herself, but she is eager to try new things.  We are thankful that she is able to attend an amazing school that provides her with so many unique educational and creative experiences within her school day.

Ethan has also had the opportunity to start taking swimming lessons at Rosslyn and he is a natural.  At 3 yrs. old he is already confident in the water, not quite swimming on his own, but very close.  He has also mastered his balance bike and recently shocked us by getting on Sophie’s pedal bike and riding it with ease!  He likes to tag along with Daddy as much as possible, but on days when he stays home he spends the day with his Aiyah (Nanny) Margaret and her 2 yr. old daughter.  They have become very good friends and through their interaction he is picking up a bit of Swahili and she seems to be learning his English.  It is very cute to watch them communicate.  He has also made several new friends on the Rosslyn Campus and at our office at Calvary.  He continues to develop his naturally funny personality and a bold sense of adventure.

Jessica is enjoying her role at Rosslyn Academy.  She is at the school three days a week and works in Alumni and External relations.  It has been a busy season for their with many projects going on simultaneous and culminating around the same time.  It is a tremendous blessing though and we are thankful for the opportunity.

     
Little Football Player (and Barca Fan!)         He knows how to make her laugh…

                     Buzz Lightyear and Rapunzel at Rosslyn Fall Festival on Halloween…                                                                              


People to People and Ministry:

The last couple of months have provided us with many opportunities to serve as well as continue to develop our relationships with our partner feeding programs.  We are encouraged by the progress that we are seeing at each program.  We are also thankful that we are here to be able to offer support to these programs in times of need, not only in the areas we are focusing on (sustainable development and food security), but also in times of unexpected needs (school fees, educational supplies, land issues, medical needs).

        

 Delivering a message to a PtoP Child…        Students at Nakuru CMD with science 
materials we were able to donate.


Dormitory Upgrade (Before/After) at Nakuru CMD.
Thanks to Operation Teaching Tools for making it possible!


**Students at Calvary Christian washing up for lunch…
(**Photo by Wes Wicklund)

In addition to our work with People to People, we have started leading worship once a month, and Jamie has had a few opportunities to speak at local churches.  In September, Jamie served as a host for a Rosslyn Academy CFS (Cultural Field Studies) group of freshman.  He took the group to Emmanuel Worship Center in Kanja, Kenya, where they served at Emmanuel Prep. School for 4 days.  The group included 15 students, many of which Jamie taught when they were 3rd graders.  It was a very unique experience for Jamie to be able to work with these students 5 yr’s after teaching them and to see how they have grown and matured.

The CFS Team from Rosslyn… 

We have also been making preparations for our “Christmas Project!”  We have an ambitious goal to provide every child in all of our feeding programs with a Christmas gift, as well as a Christmas meal!  If you want to read more about this project, or are interested in supporting, you can find more info. here:
https://dunningsinkenya.com/2015/10/12/christmas-is-coming/


Ethiopia Trip:

In October, Jamie accompanied Ron and Sharon Wooten and Pastors Wesley and Susie Berry on a trip to Ethiopia.  The group traveled throughout Southern Ethiopia….Dilla, Yirgacheffe, Chelelektu, and Addis Ababa….hosting a Pastor’s Conference, as well as outdoor meetings.  Jamie also had the opportunity to meet with Bishop Desalgn, the leader of the work in Ethiopia, about a micro-finance loan program for Pastors that we are planning to launch in 2016.  We are very excited about this program!  We will be sharing more about this work in the near future.

      
Beautiful Children…

With Bishop Desalgn and Pastor Endiryas, leaders in Ethiopia…


Thousands of people came to the outdoor meetings…

Jamie also accompanied a Hope 4 Sudan medical team to South Sudan and visited our feeding programs at Lokichoggio and Kakuma Refugee Camp.  There were some great developments that we are excited to share with you….but we will save that for the next update.  🙂


Sustainable Development Project Updates

Hosanna Children’s Home Tilapia Pond

Construction on the Tilapia Fish Pond at Hosanna Children’s Home is finished!  The pond has been stocked with 1,500 tilapia fingerlings and 1,500 catfish fingerlings.  In 6-8 months these fingerlings will be full grown and sold in the local market.  The funds generated will help support the feeding program and educational fees for the children at Hosanna Children’s Home.  Thanks for your support of this project!

        

    Stocking the pond with fingerlings…             Thousands of fingerlings…

Calvary Christian Community School Chicken Project 

The Chicken-Broiler sustainability project at Calvary Christian Community School Ruai is off to a great start!  The project is set-up to produce 200 chickens every 6 weeks.  The first cycle of chickens sold better than expected, and we are now in the 2nd cycle.  The market is currently very strong, so we have assisted in making arrangement to add another staggered cycle.  This means 200 chickens will be ready for market  and sold every 3 weeks!  The funds generated will help support the feeding program and needs of the children at the school. Thanks for your support of this project!

      
 **Chicks Arrive…                    **Chicks grow into Chickens…

   **Chickens Go to Market…
(**Photos by Wes Wicklund)

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)


   
At the Rosslyn Fall Festival….

         
** Camping with great friends…                            Our little hikers…   

           
               Ethan with Jamie …                                Ice Cream Date after Soccer…  

         
                  At the Falls…                                     ** Exploring Karura Forrest…

 

              Painting Pumpkins at Fall Festival…                                  Buddies…      

**Exploring with Daddy…

(**Photos by Wes Wicklund)


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.

Support Mailing Address:
IPHC-World Missions Ministries
PO Box 12609
Oklahoma City, OK
ATTN: James and Jessica Dunning
(Make Checks payable to IPHC)

Support Acct. #11521S (Memo Line)
Ministry/Project Acct. # 11521M

Christmas is Coming!

Christmas is just around the corner! We are planing to celebrate this wonderful season with each of our partner orphanages and schools. Our goal is to host a Christmas party for each project, as well as to provide each child with a gift. Here is a brief breakdown of what we are planning:

We will be hosting a meal at two orphanages, Hosanna Children’s Home and Nakuru CMD.  Both of these orphanages have requested new school shoes for each child.  So we will be purchasing 140 pairs!

The students at Calvary Christian Community School Ruai do not meet during the month of December, so we will celebrate with them during the last week of November. We will purchase a new school backpack for each child and fill each pack with food items for their families/caretakers.

At our feeding programs in Northern Kenya we will be sending funds for a special Christmas meal, as well as a gift for the children.  The children at Lokichoggio have requested children’s bibles and People to People T-Shirts.

The total cost for this is going to $4,000. We already have $500 from People to People, so we only need $3,500. These funds will provide a special Christmas meal for around 500 children, 180 backpacks, 140 pair of shoes, 60 Children’ Bibles and 60 T-Shirts..

If you are interested in making a contribution to support this project, it will be a huge blessing. Every donation given, no matter how large or small, will help us bring joy to hundreds of children. Help us share the love of Christ this Christmas!

To make contributions, use this link: Dunning Project Account

Or mail checks to:
World Missions Ministries
Attention: James/Jessica Dunning
PO Box 12609
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73157


Check Payable to : I.P.H.C. Memo: Ministry Account #11521M

Update: September 2015

An update on The Dunning Family: Missionaries to Kenya/People to People Coordinators
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News from Kenya:

It doesn’t seem possible, but it has been 5 months since we returned to Kenya.  Since our last update we have truly settled in, established routines, and figured out what day-today life will look like.  There have been a few big changes for us recently.  In July, Jessica started working at Rosslyn Academy, where she will work 3 days a week as the Alumni and External Relations Liaison.  In August, Sophie started KG at Rosslyn.  She absolutely loves going to school.  The adjustment to going 5 days a week was a bit much for her to understand….she keeps coming up with propositions of adjusting the school schedule to allow for longer weekends, half-days, or holidays, that she wants to take to her principal, but we have encouraged her to embrace it and she will get used to it.  🙂 Sophie starting school has been a bit of an adjustment for Ethan, because for the first time he is staying home alone.  He does well with it, but we hate the idea of him being home without other kids and with only a very small yard to play in, so we take him to the office with us and on project visitations, when it is possible.  In late July, President Obama made a visit to Kenya.  It was a very exciting time for the country, not only due to having a visit from a US President, but mainly because of his Kenyan roots.  It was also exciting for us personally, because Rosslyn Academy was chosen as a landing site.

Overall, things are going vey well for us, and we are so thankful to live and serve in this amazing country.

        
       Sophie’s 1st Day of KG                   Family Shot in Kanja, Kenya

        

 With V-22 Osprey (3 of these landed)    Marine One (2 of these landed)


People to People and Ministry:

The last couple of months have been extremely busy, with many miles driven, and we are so thankful for it!

In July, we were able to visit our People to People feeding program in Isiolo, Kenya.  We delivered food for a feast with the community and provided all of the students with school supplies for the coming school-term.  We spent an amazing day with the people in this community. During the visit we felt led to start a project that will provide more support for this feeding program, as well as others (Lokichoggio and Kakuma Refugee Camp).  You can read more about our visit and the Northern Kenya Feeding Project here: Northern Kenya Newsletter

              PtoP child with school supplies     Sophie and Fartun, two lovely girls

During our weekend in Isiolo we were also able to visit Kianthatu Academy in Giithu, Kenya, to see if there was a way for us to partner with them.  It is a wonderful school with an incredible mission.  We are hopeful that we will be able to partner with them more in the future.

    
Students of Kianthatu Academy             A student returns to school

In late July, Jamie and Joe (People to People Assistant) also made a trip up to Southwestern Kenya to distribute 150 mosquito nets in 3 different locations for People to People Ministries.   This is the most prominent area in Kenya for malaria risk.  If you would like to read a more in-depth recap of this trip, click the following link: Mosquito Net Distribution

 
Distributing nets in Southwest Kenya

We have also been able to visit several of our feeding programs, delivering food, getting updates on People to People children, and checking on Sustainable Development Programs (more below under “Projects”).

      Sophie and Ethan helping deliver food             PtoP Updates at Nakuru CMD

                     Students waiting for lunch.                             Delivering food in Isiolo

Several doors to lead and participate in Worship Ministry have opened up for us.  In the last couple of months we have had the opportunity to lead worship at International Christian Fellowship a few times. Jessica has also continued serving through music ministry at Calvary Worship Center occasionally.  Jamie also continues to have opportunities to speak.


 Jessica on worship team at CWC

 Eastern Pastor’s Conference in Mwingi District

Project Updates:

Construction on the Tilapia Fish Pond sustainability project at Hosanna Children’s Home is complete!  Unfortunately, Beatrice Wambui, the director of Hosanna, was in a  car accident and has been recovering.  She and her family are all ok, but healing has taken some time.  Now that she is better, the fish pond will soon be stocked with Tilapia fingerlings.  This fish pond will provide support for Hosanna in a variety of ways.  It will, first of all, provide a sustainable income source that will assist the orphanage in meeting the many costs of feeding and housing the 51 children.  It will also provide an additional source of healthy protein that can supplement the feeding program.  Thank you for your support of this project!

We have also started an additional Chicken Project at Calvary Community Prep. School.  We assisted in purchasing 200 broilers, that will be raised for 6 weeks, and then sold in a local market.  The income will allow for the purchase of 200 more broilers, as well as a financial supplement for the school feeding program!

     

If you are interested in supporting projects like these, and many others, please follow this link:
Opportunities to Support
Also, would you consider sharing this with others that may be interested in supporting these projects?


Recent Happenings:
(Because everybody loves pictures of the kids)

                             Growing fast                               Ethan and Daddy walking with village kids in Kanja
      
                  So it begins….                                    The little ladies love Ethan….at Nakuru CMD

      
           Kindergarten Scientist…                                  Visiting the waterfall at Karura Forrest….
       At the end of a long, hot day of service in Isiolo.       Ethan and his new buddy at the Karura waterfall.
      
  So thankful that both of our kids enjoy hiking!       Camping for a night on the way home from Nakuru.

Ethan overlooking Crater Lake (he was a trooper hiking and scrambling to the top!)


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.

To Support specific Projects click here.

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.

Support Mailing Address:
IPHC-World Missions Ministries
PO Box 12609
Oklahoma City, OK
ATTN: James and Jessica Dunning
(Make Checks payable to IPHC)

Support Acct. #11521S (Memo Line)
Ministry/Project Acct. # 11521M

For Credit/Debit Card Support:
Support Acct. #11521S:

iphc.org/donations/dunning
Ministry/Project Acct. #11521M:
http://donations.iphc.org/dunning-ministry-project-account
Personal Information:
Email: jamandjessdunning@gmail.com
Blog: jamiedunning.wordpress.comMailing Address:
P.O. Box 14182
Surfside Beach, SC 29587


Opportunities to Support:

Many people have been asking us how to best partner with, and support, our work in Kenya.  Here are several different opportunities to partner with us.  If any stand out to you or grab your heart, we would greatly appreciate your support!


1.  Sustainable Development for Feeding Programs in Kenya: We are working with our partner orphanages, schools, and feeding programs to move them towards self-sustainability through income generating projects. This gives them the security of knowing that the day-to-day needs for the children are met, regardless of the amount of support they receive.

This project can be supported here: Sustainable Development Funding (choose Ministry option)  Please send us a message if you choose to support!

(Click on photos to enlarge and to read captions)


2.  Northern Kenya Feeding Program: We have a few feeding programs in Northern Kenya, which is an extremely arid and difficult area. These feeding programs are located in Lokichoggio, Kakuma Refugee Camp, and Isiolo.  The people in these areas have severe needs and struggle to eat. We have just started a project that will offer these feeding programs more support.  Check out the latest Northern Kenya Feeding Program Newsletter for more information about this project: NorthernKenyaNewsletter-July2015

This project can be supported here: NKFP Support (choose Ministry option)  Please send us a message if you choose to support!

Pastor M serving the children at the feeding program in Lokichoggio....This is one of the three projects supported by the Northern Kenya Feeding Program,

Pastor M serving the children at the feeding program in Lokichoggio….This is one of the three projects supported by the Northern Kenya Feeding Program.


3.  Child Sponsorship through People to People: People to People Ministries provides a physical connection with children from the feeding programs and ministries that we are working with.  We are currently seeking sponsors for several children at our partner orphanages.  For $25 a month, child sponsorship provides nutritious food, medical care, educational opportunities, guidance, and life-changing skills. If you are interested in sponsoring a child through People to People, you can set that up by emailing us at: http://jamandjessdunning@gmail.com.

A Few Children in PTP Program


4.  General Ministry and Project Support: This is an all-purpose account. The funds are not designated to a specific project, but are used for a wide variety of needs as they arise. We have used these funds for building projects, Christmas gifts for children, medical needs that arise with directors or children, micro-finance loans, and general travel expenses. This can be supported here: Dunning Ministry/Project Account (choose Ministry option)  Please send us a message if you choose to support!


5.  Support Our Family: As you know, in order to live and work in Kenya we have to raise funds to support our family.  This support allows us to be here.  We are humbled and encouraged by every partner that has joined us on this journey.  If you feel led to partner with us by supporting our family, we appreciate it more than you know. You can set up support here: Dunning Support (choose Support option). Instructions for mailing support can be found here:  Mailing Support

Thank you for your interest, consideration, and prayers.

People to People: Mosquito Net Distribution in Southwest Kenya

Claiming more than 1 million lives every year, in Africa alone, malaria remains the number one killer of children under the age of 5 in sub-Saharan Africa.  In Kenya 75% of people are at risk of contracting malaria, and there were over 9 million documented cases of malaria in 2012.

(Click to enlarge— Infographics found at: Internews Kenya)


People to People works to save lives by helping to prevent the transmission of this disease.  Through the support of the People to People Malaria Net Project, we were able to recently distribute mosquito nets in Southwest Kenya.  We chose the Nyanza Province of Kenya, because it is the region of Kenya that has the highest risk for malaria infection.  This high risk is due to it’s proximity to Lake Victoria and it’s relatively low altitude.


We were able to distribute 150 nets at 3 different locations.  At each location we had a short meeting with those who joined us, where I spoke and tried to encourage the people.  We were also able to provide a meal for all of the community and church members that joined us at each site.

We began our day in Mabera, Kenya, a small town on the Kenya-Tanzania border in the morning.  At this location, we were joined by around 50 people.

(Click on the photos to enlarge and for captions)


After the distribution in Mabera, we drove 2 hours north to the village of Rangwe, Kenya.  The area surrounding Rangwe is pristine.  Before starting the distribution we walked to the top of a nearby hill where we found a quaint a beautiful little chapel.  The Pastor of this church told me that he calls it “The Church on the Hill.”  We met with local pastors, encouraging them and discussed we can better support their ministries.  We then walked back down to join the crowd of over 200 people that had gathered for the distribution site.  We had an amazing time with this people and we were overwhelmed by the reception and generosity of the people in Rangwe.

(Click on the photos to enlarge and for captions)


The last distribution site of the day was in a small village in Awach, which is outside of Kisumu.  Due to the hectic schedule of the day, we arrived in Awach much later than we had intended.  Even with our tardiness, we were greeted by nearly 200 people singing and celebrating as we arrived.  Because we had to make the 6 hour drive back to Nairobi, and it was already late in the evening,  we were only able to spend a short time with the people.  Even though we only remained for an hour, it was still extremely special and encouraging visit.

(Click on the photos to enlarge and for captions)


Update: June 2015

The last couple of months has been full and incredibly busy.  Not only have we made a lot of progress in our work and ministry, but we have also made huge steps in getting settled.

The most exciting recent development is that we finally moved into our own house.  Our main priority was to find housing where we would feel secure, even when Jamie was traveling.  We were very fortunate to find a great house in a safe and secure gated community that is situated in a very convenient part of town.  Our community is made up of several multi-homed courts.  Our court has an international blend of families, many of which have young children.  Sophie and Ethan have loved having new friends to get to know.  Our shipping container also arrived, so we have really enjoyed setting up house and making the space feel familiar and like home.  We have rediscovered many of our possessions, some that we haven’t seen since we packed them up before moving to Kenya the first time in 2008.  It feels so good to be settled,  That isn’t to say that setting up house hasn’t been without difficulties.  We discovered quickly that the solar panel that heats our water is not extremely effective during the rain season (now).  We have been getting enough warm water for the kids to have a warm bath in the evenings….but that is about all.  So we are learning to embrace cold showers….but we are also strongly considering installing an electronic water heater as a back-up option.  🙂  The last several days the lack of warm water has not been an issue because we haven’t had water at all in our house.  In a case of extreme irony, we have gotten so much rain recently that some of the Kenya Power stations flooded, causing even more power outages than normal, which led to the pumps that generate the water in our community stalling, which resulted in no water for the community……so too much water (rain) has resulted in no water.  There have also been some quirky issues with the house that are the result of a fundi making jua kali repairs (handyman, quick fix that doesn’t always last), but these situations have also provided a lot of laughs for us.  in the grand scheme these are only minor inconveniences though and are nothing compared to challenges many others face every day.  We feel extremely blessed and fortunate for the housing situation we have.  After over 2 months of being vagabonds….it feels so good to be home.

We also finally have our vehicle!  Two months after purchasing the Land Rover we have finally gotten through the many levels of paperwork, approval, and servicing, and have been driving it for a little over a week.  We have already put it to the test traveling to some of our projects in muddy and rainy conditions, and it is going to be the perfect vehicle our family.

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People to People and Ministry:

The last several weeks we have visited several of our projects and partner ministries, and we are very excited and encouraged about the future of these partnerships.  Earlier in the month we were able to visit Calvary Christian School Ruai, a school of 150 children.  This school is where we helped start the Chicken Project back in 2011, which started us on this path of sustainable development for our partner ministries.  We enjoyed spending the day with the children and Sophie and Ethan even helped us perform a skit for them.  The directors, Joseph and Eunice Mboya, have been friends and partners for many years, so we enjoyed the opportunity to meet and share a meal with them.

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Jamie and Joe (People to People Assistant) also made a trip up to Lokichoggio, Kenya, to get updates on the People to People children in that feeding program.  Loki is a small town in the far Northwestern corner of Kenya, the last town before reaching the South Sudan border, and is a remote and arid area with a lot of need.  While there, they also made a trip down to Kakuma Refugee Camp to touch base with our partners there.  There is a lot of need in both of these areas and we are prayerfully considering ways to better support them.  If you would like to read a more in-depth recap of these visits by clicking the following links: Lokichoggio.  Kakuma Refugee Camp.

Beautiful children enjoying a meal in Lokichoggio...

Beautiful children enjoying a meal in Lokichoggio…

In early June, we visited the feeding program at Nakuru CMD (Christian Ministries to the Destitute), to get PtoP Updates for all of the sponsored children.  This ministry is directed by Bishop Wekesa and his wife Gladys.  They started this ministry 15 years ago and it has grown into an amazing orphanage and school….home to approximately 150 abandoned children.  We have known this dear couple since 2002 and it has been incredible watching this ministry grow.  We were blessed to have a large team (the family of Michael and Tammy McRae, IPHC missionaries) and two Emmanuel College students (Janene Wooten, daughter of Ron and Sharon Wooten, and Hayley) with us.  Along with the help of Joe and the rest of the team, we had an amazing day full of ministry, fun and games.  We visited again this week to deliver much needed medical supplies for the children and we also met with the directors to discuss possible sustainable development projects.  We will be sharing more about that soon!


We have also been able to make a few visits to Hosanna Children’s Home to deliver supplemental food, as well as to check on the progress of the Tilapia Pond (more details below).

Jessica has started serving through music ministry at Calvary Worship Center, and Jamie has had a few opportunities to speak recently (CWC Men’s Ministry, Kakuma, Nakuru, Eldoret Worship Center).  Other than that we have continued working towards organizing the People to People records, restructuring a bit, as well as taking a few days to do a quick remodel of our PTP office space to make it a more conducive work environment.

Project Update:

Construction on the Tilapia Fish Pond sustainability project at Hosanna Children’s Home is nearly finished!  We hope to be able to stock the pond with fingerlings within the next few weeks.  This fish pond will provide support for Hosanna in a variety of ways.  It will, first of all, provide a sustainable income source that will assist the orphanage in meeting the many costs of feeding and housing the 51 children.  It will also provide an additional source of healthy protein that can supplement the feeding program.

If you are interested in supporting this project, contributions can be made at:

For Credit/Debit Card:

For Personal Check:

IPHC-World Missions Ministries
PO Box 12609
Oklahoma City, OK
ATTN: James and Jessica Dunning
(Make Checks payable to IPHC)
MEMO: Ministry/Project Acct. # 11521M

Recent Happenings:
(Because everybody loves pictures of the kids)

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 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.

A visit to Kakuma Refugee Camp….

We awoke early to make the 95km drive south to the Kakuma Refugee Camp.  I was pleasantly surprised to find that the road from Lokichoggio to Kakuma was remarkably smooth and well-paved.  It was a beautifully scenic drive, offering views of large mountains and semi-desert landscapes.  Other than the occasional military checkpoint, passing Turkana pastoralist, or camel crossing, very few people were encountered on the journey.  The camp is located just north of Kakuma town.  Kakuma means “nowhere” in Kiswahili, which is an accurate name due to it’s being extremely isolated.   The camp was established in 1992 to serve refugees that were displaced from their home countries due to war or persecution.  It was originally for Sudanese refugees, but the camp has since expanded to serve refugees from Somalia, Ethiopia, Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea, Uganda, and Rwanda.  The current population is over 175,000 people.  I had been aware of the camp for many years having read about it in numerous articles, journals, memoirs, and novels about the “Lost Boys” of Sudan.  The camp was much of what I expected, but nothing could have prepared me for it’s size.  It is a basically a small city of mabati (ironsheet) structures, thatched roof huts, tents, and mud-brick abodes.  We had made arrangements to meet with a pastor that had started a church in the camp.  He has lived in the camp the majority of his life since fleeing from Burundi as a boy.  His church has a large congregation that is made up of people from several different nations.  They also have a feeding program for children within the community. 

Aerial shot of Kakuma Refugee Camp, taken from plane...

Aerial shot of Kakuma Refugee Camp, taken from plane…

We joined them on a Sunday, so the service was in progress when we arrived.  We were welcomed into the partially built structure by joyful worship, led by adults, teenagers, and children.  After the time of worship, the members began to bring their offering to the front of the church.  I immediately noticed that there were multiple baskets for the offering.  One for tithes, one for missions and outreach, and one for the building fund.  I watched as members placed their offerings into the different baskets.  Then a strange, but beautiful, thing happened.  An elderly lady came forward carrying a burlap sack of flour.  I watched as she stepped onto the platform and laid her bag on the floor beside the offering baskets.  After a few moments, several others came forward with bags of flour, rice, and maize.  This food offering was a sacrifice…so much more of a sacrifice than the few bills I had placed in the basket.  I was stunned by the beauty of it.  Residents of the camp are largely unable to find work within the camp and they are restricted from seeking education or employment outside of it.  The semi-arid climate of Kakuma is not suited for agriculture, which makes it difficult to produce food.  Many of the refugees only have the rations that are provided by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).  Which, unfortunately, I have recently read will be reduced greatly due to lack of funding.  At the church I witnessed people that may not have had money, but that realized that everyone has something that can be given.  They offered a sacrificial offering, giving a portion of all that they had.  This portion could then be used by the church to supplement the feeding program. 

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The pastor asked me if I would share a message with the church.  I spoke on Ephesians 3:20, that, through Christ, God is capable of doing more for us than we can ask or even imagine.  I referenced the Gospel account of Jesus’ feeding the 5,000.  As I spoke I couldn’t help but wonder…..if I had been through the difficulties and trials of these people, would my faith be as strong?  Would I be able to believe that God was capable of more, if I had been torn from my home nation and now lived as a second-class citizen in an impoverished camp?  As I shared with them of God’s faithfulness, I realized that they already knew this far more than I did.  Life had handed them very difficult circumstances, but through them these survivors had found the faithfulness of God.  They had found healing and restoration in Him.  A great thing is happening in the people of this church (and the other 6 churches this pastor has planted throughout the camp) and I truly believe that God is going to do even more for them.

After the service we met with the pastor in a small mud-walled room.  He offered us each a warm bottle of soda that was, surprisingly, refreshing.  He shared about the good things that were happening, but also of the current needs and challenges they were facing.  I left him with a large bag of moringa seeds, in hopes that this versatile “miracle” plant would produce a crop that benefits the church and community.  I also made a commitment to him to search for ways that we can potentially partner with them and offer more support…something we are currently considering.

Moringa seeds...

Moringa seeds…

After the meeting we began the journey back to Lokichoggio.  I looked forward to spending the evening relaxing at the Trackmark Camp and watching the “Survival Sunday” EPL football matches.  With heaviness, I contemplated the disparity between the coming events of my evening (even at a rustic camp in Loki) and those of the people I had just left.  The lessons of the day went though my mind.   There is always more that can be given, always more that can be offered.  Christ can do more through us than we can ask or imagine.  My prayer is that I will live my life in a way that demonstrates that I truly believe these truths.  That is my prayer for all of us.

A Trip to Loki…

I climbed into the co-pilot’s chair, excited for the opportunity to have such a privileged view on my flight to Lokichoggio.  I turned around to check on Joe.  This was his first flight and he was understandably anxious.  Very few people fly for the first time on such a small aircraft, especially in Joe’s seat, a bench-seat behind the cargo.  Though only several meters apart, we were as far away from each other as possible without leaving the plane.  I was thankful for MAF (Missions Aviation Fellowship) for making it possible for us to visit our feeding program in Lokichoggio, Kenya, without having to travel by car for over 24 hours through dangerous and difficult terrain.  I gave Joe a quick thumb’s up.  He smiled anxiously and returned the gesture.  I slipped on the co-pilot headset and listened as air traffic control cleared us for take-off.  Within a few moments we were airborne and the Nairobi skyline vanished, being replaced by rolling valleys, ridged mountains, and a sea of clouds.

After a short 2 1/2hr. flight we landed at the Loki airstrip, greeted by the beautiful Mogilia Mountain Range, which serves as a scenic backdrop.  Lokichoggio may be in an isolated corner of Kenya, but it would be difficult to find a more beautiful place to land a plane. The town sits in a narrow valley between the Songot Mountains and the Mogilia Range, so there are beautiful mountain vistas in nearly every direction.  I inquired as to how Joe had faired on his first flight.  Overall, he enjoyed the experience, but was quite perplexed by the pressure that was overwhelming his ears.  Anxious to meet with Pastor M., the director of the feeding program, we quickly made our way to our camp, had a bite for lunch, and then departed for the church.  As we bounced a long the bumpy roads, I was struck by the greenness of the land.  Most people would have looked around and only seen a dry and arid semi-desert, but compared to my previous trips to this area, there was a copious amount of vegetation.  I found out that in the month prior there had been a very heavy rain season, accounting for the growth.  We arrived at the church and I, again, was shocked by the amount of vegetation on the compound.  Quickly that shock turned to dismay as I looked beyond the green banks to see the familiar dry riverbed in the distance.  The heavy rain that had fallen in the previous month had caused the river to surge, nearly doubling in width, leading to incredible vegetation growth on both banks of the river.  However, the river had dried up since, offering a glimpse as to what was in store for this land.  Lokichoggio, because it is situated in between the mountains, actually gets a decent amount of rainfall, but the sandy soil quickly absorbs most of it.

The dried-out riverbed that borders Loki...

The dried-out riverbed that borders Loki…

 In our meeting with Pastor M, I quickly realized that there was a lot of work to do if this program was going to be sustained.  The surrounding community is overwhelmed by need.  The church is doing it’s best to help meet some of those needs by offering a feeding program for children, but resources are limited and the members of the church have needs of their own.  We made plans to have a small service the following day, as well as to prepare a feast for the church members and all of the children that may show up.  My primary focus was to get updates on the People to People sponsored children, but we also wanted to bless all that may be present.  After the meeting, Joe and I returned to Trackmark Camp and spent the rest of the hot afternoon relaxing and swatting mosquitos. 

Early the next morning we arrived at the church compound, surprised to find only a handful of children.  We began making preparations for the day and within minutes the number of children doubled, and continued to multiply over the next hour.  By the time we were ready to begin there  were over 150 children present, not counting adults.  Following a short program for the kids, I began the process of completing updates on the PtoP sponsored children (Correspondence Letters, Photos, Artwork, Crafts, Personal Info, etc.) while Teacher Joe engaged the rest of the children with games and activities.  After several hours we gathered back together in the church.  Then members came forward to make a beautiful presentation to us.  Northwestern Kenya is home to the Turkana tribe, a semi-nomadic people.  As with other Nilotic tribes, many Turkana women are gifted bead-workers.  They make beautiful beaded jewelry and ornamental decorations.  As a token of their gratitude, several women of the church presented me with a custom bracelet and a leather/beaded belt.  The women gathered around me and placed the bracelet on my arm and buckled the belt around my waist…which provided only a few moments of awkward invasions of privacy.  I looked closely at the bracelet and saw the words “James Dunning” displayed in bright white beads.  The pastor presented us each with a freshly carved Aburo (traditional walking/fighting stick) and ekicholong (a traditional stool/headrest carried by Turkana).  The women gathered around me singing words in a language I could not understand, but their joyous dancing and exuberant faces needed no translation.  This was a celebration.  I found myself feeling overwhelmed with conflicting emotions.  On one hand I was deeply honored by this outpouring of gratitude and respect, but at the same time I felt awkward because I had done nothing to deserve it.  Sure, through PtoP we’ve provided funds for the feeding program.  We strive to bring awareness and work to foster communication with sponsors to ensure that their assistance continues, but compared to the needs these people face every day….there is so much more to be done.  I decided in that moment that we must find a way to better support this program, this church, and these people.  One idea that the ladies brought to me was to assist them in starting a business selling their beadwork.  This is something that we are prayerfully considering because we would love the opportunity to partner with and empower these women.  There is a lot to consider and to take into account, but we are hopeful, because this could be a way to generate income for members of the community, which would also benefit the church and the feeding program. 

I thanked them for their generous gifts and then made a presentation to them.  I presented them with a bag of Moringa seeds….hundreds of Moringa seeds.  Moringa is a type of tree that grows well in dry and arid regions.  It can thrive with very little water.  It also produces edible leaves that are packed with nutrients, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties.  It is even used for medicinal purposes, both internally and externally.  It is often referred to as a miracle tree.  We recently made a great connection with a supplier in Nairobi that offers large quantities of moringa at a low price.  Lokichoggio has the climate for the plant and the church has a decent amount of land.  We gave the seeds with the hope that it will be the beginning of a sustainable farm.  The plants can provide supplemental food for the feeding program and church members, as well as provide potential income source through the selling of seeds and leaves in the community.  At least that is the hope. 

Moringa seeds...

Moringa seeds…

After the presentations, the feast began.  It was both rewarding and humbling to see the amount of joy that a simple meal of rice and beans brought these children.  Such a small gift can go so far.    

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The next day we would be making the journey south, to the Kakuma Refugee Camp.  So we headed back to the Trackmark for an evening of resting, reading, and mosquito swatting.

May 2015 Update…

NewsletterPhoto

This is our first newsletter since arriving in Kenya a little over a month ago!  We have spent the last several weeks trying to reacclimatize to life here, attempting to get settled, and beginning to ease into our work.

So how is all of that going?  Well, It has been amazing to be back and, in some ways, it feels like we never left, but at the same time we are still very unsettled.  For example, we are currently homeless.  Fortunately, we have been staying with Mrs. Gaylia List, and she makes “homelessness” as comfortable as it could possibly be.  Originally, we were only going to stay with her for a few days, but she graciously has allowed us to stay on while we look for a permanent residence….and let us tell you, that can be an adventure over here!  We already have some stories that I am sure we will laugh about one day.   For the moment, we are currently all living in a bedroom together….luckily we love each other.  The good news is that we think that we may have found a house that we will hopefully be able to move into within the next few weeks!

We have made some progress in purchasing a vehicle.  We were able to get a much nicer vehicle than we had planned for a much lower cost that we had expected, so we felt blessed by that.  We purchased a 2004 Land Rover Discovery that is in great condition, with relatively low miles, from a UN worker that was leaving the country.  It is a 4WD vehicle that will be able to reliably get us anywhere in East Africa that we will need to go.  Unfortunately, since it was owned by UN, there has been a lot of extra paperwork, bureaucratic hoops, and appointments downtown, but we are almost finished with all of that excitement.  We should be able to actually drive the car within the next week or so.  Even with all of the waiting, we have been fortunate to have access to a vehicle that belongs to the mission in the meantime.

Our new vehicle!


PEOPLE TO PEOPLE AND MINISTRY:

  In regards to our work, we have been so excited to get into the People to People office and to visit a couple of our projects.  We have started the busy “update season” of getting updates on all of the People to People sponsored children in Kenya.  It’s a big job, but we have modified and updated the process, so we are very excited about the types of correspondence Child Sponsors will be receiving this year!  We have visited a couple of the feeding programs, Hosanna Children’s Home and Christian Ministries to the Destitute.  We were welcomed “home” by both in amazing ways.  Hosanna celebrated our homecoming with a party, complete with cake, music, and decorations.  At CMD we were able to have a nice lunch with the Directors, Bishop and Sister Wekesa.  We are very excited about continuing our partnership with these amazing ministries, and we are currently working with both on some sustainable income generating projects for these ministries (more below!).  The future is bright!  We found out that we will also be overseeing the growth of the People to People work in Ethiopia.  This work will take some time to establish, but we have some very exciting ideas for the vision of PTP Ethiopia….more on this in the months to come!

We have been getting settled into our home church, Calvary Worship Center.  Jamie has had a couple of opportunities to speak there (Palm Sunday service and to the Men’s Fellowship), and Jessica hopes to get involved with the worship team when she is able.

  This past week Jamie had the opportunity to teach a few sessions at a conference at Emmanuel Worship Center in Kanja.  Kanja is a village on the eastern slopes of Mt. Kenya that happens to be one of our favorite and (in our opinion) one of the most beautiful places in Kenya.  It is in the middle of tea and coffee country, so the area is surrounded by rolling green hills, rushing rivers and waterfalls, and lush forests.  When visiting this area, we always stay with Bishop Ayub, his wife Lucy, and their incredible kids.  We visited them for the first time 8 yrs. ago and we have always looked forward to opportunities to return.  The conference was for 60 pastors from the Eastern Conference in Kenya, and Jamie accompanied missionaries, Ron Wooten and Michael McRae, as teachers.

We also had the chance to speak (Jamie) and sing (Jessica) at Satellite Church, the church of our good friends Pastor Tobias and Judy, this Sunday.  It’s been busy, but we are so thankful that we have been able to get back involved rather quickly.

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PROJECT UPDATE:

We are excited to announce our first sustainable development project!  We will be assisting Hosanna Children’s Home, one of our People to People feeding programs, with a Tilapia Fish Pond.  Hosanna is an amazing ministry that provides a safe and secure home for 51 orphaned children.  They provide holistic care, meeting the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of the children.  This fish pond will provide support for Hosanna in a variety of ways.  It will, first of all, provide a sustainable income source that will assist the orphanage in meeting the many costs of feeding and housing the children.  It will also provide an additional source of healthy protein that can supplement the feeding program.

If you are interested in supporting this project, contributions can be made at:


 With the Directors of Hosanna.            The beginning stages of the fish pond.

If you are interested in supporting this project, contributions can be made at:

For Credit/Debit Card:

For Personal Check:

IPHC-World Missions Ministries
PO Box 12609
Oklahoma City, OK
ATTN: James and Jessica Dunning
(Make Checks payable to IPHC)
MEMO: Ministry/Project Acct. # 11521M


 RECENT HAPPENINGS (Because everyone loves pictures of the kids)

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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,

Jamie, Jess, Sophie, and Ethan

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:

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 in the “Ways to Help” link..