Email newsletter from Belinda Wilson, Our Neighbours Ministry, Bulawayo Zimbabwe
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September 2018 Newsletter
Greetings to you all from Zimbabwe. We trust you are all doing well and will be blessed as you read through our newsletter, sharing some of what is happening, and what has recently happened here and through ONM. Your kindness and generosity continues to enable Our Neighbours Ministry to touch lives in Bulawayo, and give hope to many, all of which is for God´s glory.
Zimbabwe was highlighted in the international news a few months back with Presidential Elections taking place, for the first time in 37 years we had a variety of presidential candidates to chose from. There was a sense of hope and expectation for the future, and no matter what the outcome the general sense was an absolute desire for a peaceful and non-violent election. As Zimbabweans we believe this was achieved, and together we will work towards a Zimbabwe where we respect and care for our neighbour and continue to love one another. Please continue to pray for our nation.
Some highlights from the past six months :-
Lighthouse Christian Academy
The third school term of 2018 began the first week of September and it is most likely going to be another busy term for both the in-house and the out-house students of Lighthouse.
In-house : In April we had a new intake of students join our LCA team. All of these 9 children were excited about their new learning opportunities and it is our prayer that this excitement for education will continue throughout their schooling years. We understand that it is our responsibility to tap into the lives of these children for them to reach their highest potential. At Lighthouse we now have 19 in house students split into two classes based on their levels and ability.
Jabulani is one of our new senior male students, although he is quiet and reserved, he is well behaved, respects authority and is always willing to help out with any of the school chores. Although he was said to have done up to grade six Jabulani struggled with both English and Ndebele so had to go back to re-cover some of his basics. With his commitment we believe he will continue to make good progress.
Our youngest student Shalom is six years old, she needed a lot of attention in the beginning and we have seen her progress over the second term as she has settled into the school routine which was all very new to her.

These words were shared by Mathias Moyo, who heads our staff compliment and teaches the Junior ACE class.  “Our main aim as teachers of Lighthouse is to bring out a total man who fears God and lives a better life because of all of this. We know and believe by God's grace we will help these students to learn and understand that God is merciful.”  Our congratulations go to Mathias on his wedding in September, we wish him and his wife Jane a long and happy life together.
Out-house : Lighthouse currently supports 21 students through our out-house program. These are all children who were learning at Lighthouse and have been integrated into local schools or vocational centres. A few of our children will be writing examinations in October/November and we ask you to keep them in your prayers.
Audrey started with us in 2015 using the ACE curriculum, and later went onto our local ZIMSEC curriculum. In 2016 she was integrated into the local school system and enrolled at Foundation College. She will shortly write her Ordinary Level Examinations along with Terrence. Audrey lives with her ailing grandmother, she is one student who has shown, by example, determination and commitment to her education and life goals.
Christabel Ngwenya is one of our pioneer female junior students. She was integrated into our local mainstream primary school, and will write her Grade 7 examinations in October/November marking the end of her primary school learning. Christabel has been doing relatively well academically and to help her be better prepared for these examinations she spent her school break participating in extra lessons. Christabel lives about 4km from the school, with her elderly grandmother. She too is a role model of determination and dedication as she walks everyday to and from school.
Isaiah´s Babies Home
The vision of Isaiah´s is that all children will be placed into loving families or caring communities, ideally by the age 2 and a half years old. When family reunification isn’t an option, and they aren’t fostered to be adopted, we seek family homes with partner organisations. Unfortunately our partner organisations hadn’t had space for a while, but some space become available with another Organisation who cares long term for vulnerable children within small forever family units in a community village setting. We know this organisation, and as they are well run, we agreed with the decision for our 9 eldest children to move given their limited options with us.  We were able to visit this new home with the children and they were content at the prospect of moving, and knowing they were going to be where Portia and Isaac (who were also at Isaiah's but now living at this Organisation) were, brought much excitement for them all.
“Every child held in God´s hands” is our motto and there-in lies our trust and hope for their future! We have certainly missed them and the home has been somewhat less busy for this period, but we know that they have each other and this has made the move an easier transition for them all. We have visited them a few times and it has been wonderful to see them settled and enjoying life with their new siblings and families.
Another two children were received in May and June respectively. One little boy had been left in the care of his elderly and partially blind grandmother and the second young baby was placed into our care whilst his mother was receiving treatment at a mental hospital. Both children have option for family reunification and these continue to be explored to ensure they are suitable and appropriate.
Last week we said good bye to one of our little boys who was fostered for adoption. We are delighted when children are placed into loving homes, and even though it´s hard for the staff and confusing for our other little ones we are grateful that he has a family to love and care for him.
We currently have 12 children in our care :- 5 beautiful girls and 7 gorgeous boys.
Esandleni Sothando
Much of our work at Esandleni is spent encouraging and empowering the Burombo ladies as there is such great need in their community and the responsibility to provide for their family falls mainly on the ladies. Given their great need last year we started a chicken rearing project which provides both financial support and some food support too. We have done two chicken projects with the first one being a little more successful than the second, however lessons were learnt and the ladies are keen to start their third project.
We recently trained a second group of empowerment ladies to make the paper beads. We started with a total of 9 ladies but after several attempts and problems in measuring and cutting some gave up and we were left with 5 committed ladies. These ladies learnt to make beautiful beads after a couple of weeks through their determination and hard work, they use these to make necklaces, bracelets and the beaded bags. This group of ladies are also keen to do a chicken project which will further provide for their families.
Esandleni continues to provide educational support to young ladies.
It has been a joyful time as we have celebrated both university graduations and a wedding for one of our Luveve high-school girls. When we met Lindiwe she was not attending school and with our support she returned to school, and after completing her high school education she then enrolled in training to become a police-woman. Here she met the love of her life and we were invited to celebrate their wedding with them.
Patience has continued to study law at the University of Zimbabwe and this semester she is doing her attachment. Patience has worked extremely hard and every year she excels further. It has been a tough road for her, she has very little other financial support, and to earn some extra pocket money she has been doing laundry for other students at the University Campus. She recently took first place in a Court Competition and has been selected to compete in another school competition in Ghana.
Hearts of Love & Children of Grace Home
The Hearts of Love team has been actively involved in family reunification processes for some of the non-biological children who were staying at the Children of Grace forever family home. Given we were able to reunite these children over time successfully with their extended families the children of grace family unit is coming to an end.
In May Respect was reconnected with her paternal aunt who lives in Bulawayo, and we are pleased to report that this family reunification has gone well. She also moved schools, has settled and is happy in her new surroundings.
Outreach continues, particularly with the elderly who receive regularly food support and those living in difficult circumstances. Unfortunately over the last few months we have seen the passing of a few more of our elderly folk, we bid farewell to Khulu Mumba, Gogo Catherine, Gogo Elizabeth and Gogo Priscillah. Elizabeth Manda passed away in June after a difficult illness, unfortunately being unable to get the prescribed medication for treatment was the biggest hurdle for her and her family. When we were able to assist the family with finance for an ultra-sound scan her condition rapidly deteriorated and she passed away a few days after this test was done.
Our soup kitchen has partnered with a local street feeding program called “Feed The City” which has a goal to feed 4000 people. From this partnership we have also received some food parcels for distribution to the Cabatsha and Trenance communities. We look forward to working with them as we share a common goal of providing food for those unable to provide for themselves.
2018 is fast drawing to an end and as we reflect back on all that has happened, the goals we set out to achieve, and the lives we have touched we can only be thankful for this journey has not been one travelled alone. Thank you for the part you have played in this, the support and encouragement we have received enables us to continue to reach out to those most in need and care for children without family options currently. We hope that you will continue to walk this journey with us.
Thank you and God bless


News in Pictures
Greetings from Bulawayo, Zimbabwe
Lighthouse Christian Academy now has 19 In-House Students
Pictured here are 18 of 19
Youngest LCA student Shalom
New LCA student
Mr & Mrs Mathias Moyo
Wedding 2~9~18
" Every child held in God´s Hands "
9 children moved in April´18 to their new forever home
Pictured above (top) as newcomers
Pictured above (bottom) before leaving
New baby placed into care in June 2018
Our Isaiah´s Crew pictured with MaMoyo ~ Aug´18
Playtime fun at Isaiahs
Our second group of empowerment ladies at Burombo flats meeting together to make their beads
Lindiwe was assisted by Esandleni with educational support,
she is pictured here on her wedding day.
Sanele at her graduation
Elizabeth Manda, photo taken at the hospital awaiting consultation just weeks before she passed away.
Sikhohlisiwe Maphosa & her family in front of their house having just received a food hamper
Trevor (in blue shirt & grey pants) is an orphan who was assisted with medical support for an ulcer on his foot, he is pictured here with his aunt and cousins who we also assisted with some food support
HOL Outreach continues to provide food support to the elderly, and the team visit regularly to ensure the elderly are also being cared for.
We have partnered with Feed The City whose goal is to provide food support to 4000 individuals. They have donated various food items both for our soup kitchen and for community outreach
Would you like to join our prayer team uplifting the different areas of the Ministry to the Lord with praise and thanksgiving. Send us an email.
Global Development GroupOur Neighbours Ministry is proud to be a partner for Project J301N Our Neighbours Community Project - Zimbabwe with Global Development Group (ABN 57 102 400 993), an Australian NGO approved by the Minister for Foreign Affairs to carry out quality humanitarian projects with approved partners and provide aid to relieve poverty and ensure long term solutions.
No non-development activities (welfare, evangelism) are a part of the approved project. Evangelistic and welfare activities done by Our Neighbours Ministry are done outside of Project J301N.
Copyright © 2018 Our Neighbours Ministry, All rights reserved.

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