We just received some wonderful news this morning. Our school is going to work with us to put on a fundraiser for our orphanage! There are three families (including us) at our school who have children adopted from AAI. We got together and came up with a plan.
I shared a story with the families about a project my second grade students did during Lent a while back. We were working with a group of local sisters, many of whom were retired, but one of whom was a missionary in Madagascar. She came and spoke directly to the hearts of these eight year old students. By the time they had seen her slide show and heard about all the children she had helped, they were all ready to go to Madagascar as missionaries themselves! Instead, we inquired of her needs as a missionary. What could we as a second grade class do? Her answer, "Pray. And make sacrifices." The students nodded knowingly, but after she left, I looked out to a sea of raised hands and the question, "What did she mean--make sacrifices?"
A few students understood and with that the discussion was started. What can we sacrifice that would help the children in Madagascar? We couldn't send lots of items--it was just too hard for us to do. But one child said, "What if we each sacrifice a favorite toy or game or book and sell it to raise money for the mission. I was sold. Once the posters were made and letters were prepared to send home with the whole school, my little second graders, in groups of two and three, each visited the other classes grades K-8 and shared our plan. We collected items for about a week and set up shop on Friday. On that Friday, the whole school cycled through in 10-15 minute intervals and spent a dollar here or there to purchase the toy another child had sacrificed for our sale. In the end, we raised close to $400 and my second graders saw first hand the fruits of their labor.
So, we're going to try it again. Please pray for a success in this event both in the raising of funds and the raising of awareness. We're going to target the second week in November through parent conferences and hope that the story of our children will touch others as it has touched us.