We invite you to join with us in walking for the kids of Liberia. Your personal involvement in our walk allows our kids to have an education that they would not otherwise ever be able to afford. We believe that education will change the future of Liberia. With a few small steps at a time we can make a difference!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Wallace Helping Hands School

The next school I would like to show you is Wallace Helping Hands. This is a school that, despite it's lack of a proper school building, is pressing forward with the education of their children. They realize that the children need an education in order to have a better future to look forward to. They set up a school here and go day by day. Every child is asked to bring their own school desk. They are cramped in this hot, run-down school with 67 students, however, their spirit triumphs! I would also like to mention here that the staff at this school brings a child in a wheelchair to school with them. They go to her house, pick her up and push her to school everyday! What a dedicated, caring staff. Here is a very short video that quickly introduces you to the atmosphere of the school. More to come....

Monday, December 13, 2010

If you are stopping by and visiting our blog, would you take a second to click on yes, no or maybe to let us know of your interest in the next walk? Thanks!

Handing out Girl Scout Cookies

Quite possibly the only food some of these children received today.

Lightstream Buildings

 This is the Lightstream Academy school building.

Here we have the bathroom. Actually one of the nicer bathrooms I have seen.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Teaching at Lightstream Academy

These are the Lightstream kids that we were able to give scholarships to from our first walk. We will show you the others as we cover the different schools they are in.

Just goofing around and posing for the camera.

And one more shot of the inside of the school. Classes are separated by these dividers.

I added this video of one of the teachers instructing the students on proper letter writing.  The kids were excited to have visitors and you can hear all the chatting but you can grasp what he is trying to teach them.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Backpacks for Lightstream Academy

Take a look at the kids in our program. NONE of these kids would have had this opportunity if you did not walk last June! Stratford Girl Scouts also donated the school supplies inside each one. Seeing the children attend school makes it all worth it!

Lightstream Academy Video

This video takes a look into the classrooms at Lightstream Academy. Stephen Johnson will talk a bit about bringing backpacks, our program, and the need to get people involved. There is alot of background noise but I found it helpful to adjust the volume.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Lightstream Academy

This post is to introduce you to one of the schools that we are able to send some of our sponsored students to.  This school is accredited by the Ministry of Education (which is important in Liberia) and has also had a church in Wisconsin help with funding of their school building project.  Currently, they are educating around 400 students.  There are many needs here but the school is  under great leadership.  I am hoping to see this school grow even more.
These are children that are gathered for morning prayers.

    This is another picture of the students doing morning
    devotions.  In Liberia, praying and worshipping are still a part of daily school activity.

    This is the first grade class.

    One of the older classes.

    The children's water source during recess break.

    This is the principal of Lightstream Academy, David Fatorma and his family.  David has visited the U.S. on a few occasions and I think he brings a well rounded perspective on education.  Global Orphan Outreach is proud to be working with them.

    In the next few postings I will post some pics of the last trip to Liberia where we handed out backpacks and school supplies to our sponsored kids.  A great big thank you goes out to the Stratford Girl Scout troops for donating the school supplies and also to some individual donors who sent us the backpacks.  We appreciate your generosity!

    Friday, December 3, 2010

    Back To School

    Once again summer has flown right by. Another school year has come. We have packed our backpacks and taken the "First Day of School" pictures by the bus and sitting at their desks with their teachers by their side. The kids are excited. The first day of school one of them came home and said, "We have the best teachers in the whole world!" Indeed, they do. Kids that attend school in America are truly blessed.

    In another small country just across the ocean, school is starting for them as well. There is excitement buzzing around for our new students. They truly appreciate the opportunity given them this year! This year we launch our school scholarship program. We started by raising funds from our walkathon. With the help from generous supporters we were able to get our program up and running. I am excited each time I receive an application with a picture of our children attached. I am praying for each student according to their needs. I know that God has a plan for each of them and it is my joy to be a part of their lives! I hope to update you with new pictures of them in their desks too!

    I wanted to update you with a couple of praises:
    1. We are enrolling more students than previously thought,
    2. We found a school to work with who is working alongside the Ministry of Education and also accredited with them for 50USD per school year! The kids will have uniforms, shoes and tuition! Did you know that most schools will cost 100+USD per year in Liberia?
    3. This week our local Girl Scout Troops donated enough school supplies for 15 students! It looks like our students are prepared......ALMOST.

    We would love to be able to give each student a backpack for their supplies. They were blessed with crayons, markers, notebooks, paper, rulers, glue, etc. We currently don't have backpacks to enable them to carry their things. Our students do ALOT of walking to and from school. I know of one child who walks 4 miles! With school supplies being clearanced now, it is a great time to purchase one for a very reasonable price. If you would be willing to send one (or 3 or 4), we would sure appreciate it. They are needed this month so that we can meet the trip deadline in the beginning of October. We would take gift cards or cash donations to buy them here ourselves if you prefer.
    *Note: We will take used ones IF they are clean and not ripped.

    Please send your donation to:
    Julie Redman
    611 South Ridge Drive
    Stratford, Wisconsin

    any questions? call 715-687-4474 or 651-491-0158


    We Did It!

    Well, we DID IT! We managed to walk 5 miles (and burn ourselves in the process) for Liberia. We had a nice group show up for our very first walk. The goal of this walk was to bring awareness to the needs of school children in Liberia. The other goal, of course was to raise a little cash to actually SEND some of those kids to school. We did raise some...$1,000.00!!! Not bad for starting this just WEEKS before the actual walk! Next year I will start much earlier! This is a picture of all of us before the walk started.

    Not long into our walk (say a block!) we had some that needed a potty break. So, just a picture of all of us standing around waiting.

    Donna's girl, Gracie. Gorgeous as always!

    Letting the teens lead us?? Hmm, I jumped in front. Seriously, we had a nice group of teens show up and how cool that we see young people caring about others!

    Some walkers taking a break after the long 5 miles. We did not hear ONE complaint all the way there. Awesome.

    A few of the teens relaxing after the walk.

    Bryan and Ben Kangar probably glad they are done.

    Ben is from Liberia. He now lives in the states but knows well what it is like to be educated in Liberia. He spoke for us and did an amazing job! He is currently pastoring a Calvary Chapel church and the church body there is looking forward to what the future holds for supporting Liberia. Ben has been wonderful in helping people "catch the vision". Thanks Ben, for joining us and making the walk successful! Side note* Do you see any resemblance to Bill Cosby here??

    Just had to add this picture of Teddy here. Curious George is what I was thinking as I took this picture. He loves his big brother Joe!

    Here we are soaking in all that Ben had to say. I can't speak for everybody but I was brought to a new reality of how blessed we were to have an American education. One of the punishments he talked of was that if you showed up late to school you were to put your fingers all together and then the teacher would slap you with something on the tops of them. He also talked about the corruption of having to "buy a grade" or "buy another test". There are so many ways in which Liberia is different than our school systems. One of the great things about theirs is that they have to teach Bible there. I love the fact the children are learning about God's love for them. They are blessed with that freedom still.

    Our local public school system donated the school bus to drive everyone back into town. Another great point that Ben brought mention to was that in Liberia the kids don't take a bus, they walk. Thus, the reason for all of us to walk.

    another bus shot...

    After the walk we opened our home (and firepit) to anyone who just wanted to hang out for awhile. So glad we did as the fellowship among us was a great time.

    I am really glad we took this opportunity to reach out in our community and draw attention to Liberia. We know first hand what the children in Liberia (and so many other countries) are enduring because we have been there. I want others to know that if we band together we can and will make a difference for the kids. Even if only on a small scale. If we can touch a handful, how many will that handful touch? I hope one day to take a trip with a person from our community. It could, should and would be life-changing for them.

    Through this walk we have 10 children that can attend school for a year!!! That is such great news! I want to thank you all for helping us to reach this goal. Without your help none of these kids could attend. Most have never, ever attended school. It was alot of fun putting this together but the most fun I will have is to see their faces and take their pictures when they get enrolled this year. And to add to that our local Girl Scout club is taking on a school supply fund-raiser so these kids will be ready to go!

    If you want to contribute, send a child to school or send supplies for school it is not too late. Please contact me or leave a comment. Can't wait for August!