Greetings from the exotic Orient. We got a chance to see some more of our beautiful surroundings this month as we took a short vacation to a nearby town. It was a 7-hour train ride where we got to see more of the countryside, and Rachel invited other kids into our train car for a time of coloring and Uno. This city was surrounded by mountains with a beautiful lake in the middle and provided plenty of picture-perfect moments. We have put several on Flickr for you to view.
Back to School
This past week we have enjoyed seeing all of our friends post their kids’ Back to School pictures on Facebook. This month has been a long struggle about what would be the best way for our family to learn the local language. Through many discussions and prayer we only came to a decision this week. While I will stay at the same school as I have been at, Allison and the girls will try out a closer location that is more flexible with the scheduling.
This new school seems very strategic for us. They are open to having Allison teach English to offset some of the costs. Also, through our conversations with the staff, we feel it could be a beneficial connection as we look to have people join us here in the future.
Helping Rescue Girls
As you know, our vision for coming here is to create a family for Asian orphan girls. Even though we don’t have the girls now, this vision motivates our language study and reminds us that we are exactly where we should be. This month doors opened supernaturally for me (Kevin) to volunteer with a local charity that rescues women from sex trafficking. A very high percentage are orphaned or from divorced families, and no one cares about them. These girls who have been trafficked endure abusive language, being punched, kicked and sometimes burned with cigarettes for fun. The customers take pornographic pictures of the girls and send them to all their friends. The red light districts have armed men standing outside their rooms, so escape is difficult. All the time the girls are scared if they don’t perform well the boss will not give them the money due to them and all that they endured will have been for nothing.
In answer to this tragedy which is rampant here in Southeast Asia, this charity goes out at night, befriends the girls, and offers them an alternative. The alternative for them is housing, counseling, learning English and providing them with a job. I will be helping with their job.
The job is making jewelry, which is sold internationally to fund the work (here is their online catalog). My role is to look at the production process, quality assurance, and communication flow within the organization. They recently added a new city of rescue, which has added unexpected costs and highlighted leakage in their cash flow. It’s exciting to us that my MBA can be used to help such a worthy cause! He is good!
This direction came after prayer and counsel with our advisory team, as we didn’t want to slow down the vision we were going after. In the end we feel this opportunity is an investment towards our own vision. We believe it will build necessary connections and help to bring life into dead places. And we are learning so much about life and business here, what being a female is like in this culture, what works and what doesn’t. It has been eye opening to say the least.
Allison is Coming to Redding
You may have noticed my earlier mention of having people to join us. We believe we have been given a strategy for building into our long-term vision and that entails people coming to help. Allison is making several appearances in California to recruit and cast vision for what we are doing. She is excited to see many of you while there! Please email us if you know of strategic people or fellowships for her to meet with while there.
Please be praying for her trip, that the finances would come in to offset the cost, and that the right connections will be made. Please also pray for strategy as she prepares and open doors with the right people.
Please also be praying for me as I need supernatural wisdom to help this charity. I have business experience, but not the cross-cultural understanding I need to make it successful for the locals who are involved. The way they work and process is much different, and we want to set up a working model for them, not just for my Western mindset.