Christmas 2022 Newsletter

November 21 2022 

Dear Friends of Faith,  

As we move swiftly toward the end of 2022, enjoying an absolutely beautifully colourful and warm fall, we have a great deal to be thankful for and to celebrate at Faith’s Orphans Fund Canada. 

First, of course, is the fact that 30 years of ministry to Zambia’s orphans and vulnerable youth was celebrated over three days (Zambian style) in August with hundreds of FOF implementors, FOF staff & faculty, STC students, FOF alumni, government officials, pastors and yes, some Canadians too. It was an honour and a privilege to witness the incredible impact that FOF has had and continues to have on so many young lives – spiritually, physically, emotionally and financially – FOF truly gives impoverished individuals a chance.  

Having visited the Skills Training Centre in Kitwe in August, we were impressed to see the impact of on-going repairs and maintenance projects. As a result, we have provided additional funding for new roofing and ceiling boards which are being installed on the main, original classroom & administration block at this time. Additionally, while on site, we reviewed the age, mileage and state of the three existing FOF vehicles. Having recently learned of a mission group in Germany that is focused on vehicle procurement for charitable organizations, we have ordered two new Toyota Land Cruisers for a fantastically low price, including delivery, to replace two of the aging FOF vehicles.  

We were extremely grateful to have been able to have Faith Liyena return to Ontario in mid-May after COVID travel restrictions had been lifted. Faith was greatly encouraged to be able to meet with the many committed donors, prayer partners, sewers, knitters and volunteers. Your continued faithfulness in sharing with FOF’s work is reflected in the fact that our packing & shipping team of volunteers have just sent the largest ever shipment of handmade clothing & quilts to FOF Zambia. The hundreds of hours passionately invested by over a thousand volunteer sewers and knitters is overwhelming.  

We celebrate with the Zambians, the electing of a Zambian Christian businessman, Hakainde Hichilema as President (Aug 2021). Mr. Hichilema is attempting to reform the government, drive out corruption and build a more stable and significant economy. To date, these reforms seem to be having a positive effect as inflation is slowing and the Zambian Kwacha is strengthening in value. This is great news for Zambia. However, a stronger Zambian Kwacha relative to the Canadian dollar will impact our FOF Canada annual budget. Shortly, the FOF Canada board will be reviewing and solidifying the budget for 2023. For all the years FOF Canada has existed, there has always been enough provision to meet each and every operational and capital budget. We recognize that without the Lord’s guidance and your support, there would be no budget. So, we wish to express our gratitude to our Lord and to all of you who support the work of FOF and the impact it has on the lives that FOF touches. Thank you! 

Each year, as we approach Christmas, some of our FOF supporters express a desire to provide a special gift to Faith’s Orphans Fund to support a project that aids our orphans and vulnerable youth. The following are some ideas that would be well received in Zambia that we could facilitate. 

1. Send a student to Teen’s Missions Leadership Camp for a life changing five weeks of Bible, leadership and life skills training – $150 per student. 

2. Help provide a Christmas party for children at a Centre which includes a practical gift and a Christmas dinner of goat and nshima (a staple food in Zambia – a very thick and smooth porridge made from ground maize) – $2.50 per child or about $450 per centre. 

3. Provide a sewing machine or carpentry tool kit for a STC graduate student to enable them to start their own business. There is a need for 12 manually operated sewing machines and 20 carpentry tool kits – $325 per sewing machine, $350 per carpentry tool kit.

4. Equip a secondary student with necessary school supplies. Our Zambian students are required to provide their own course texts, uniforms, math sets, stationery and pens or pencils. $30 per student helps FOF provide these essentials to the 1,353 FOF registered students attending secondary school.  

As we complete another year at FOF Canada, we again wish to say “thank you” and “may the Lord bless you and your family” because of your generous support and the encouragement that you have been to the work of Faith’s Orphans in Zambia. While in Zambia, we were blessed to hear many testimonies of the positive impact your support has made in the lives there. The latest video from Zambia immediately follows this letter. However, there are several other stories available to view by going to the ‘Videos’ section of this website. We believe these testimonies will warm your heart as you hear from the ‘children’ themselves what your support has meant to them and how it has changed their lives.

Wishing you and yours a very blessed and meaningful Christmas Season, from all of us at Faith’s Orphans Fund
 
Ian Ross on behalf of the FOF Zambia Team and FOF Canada Board of Directors

Latest Video link

NEW – Christmas Letter 2021

Greetings from all of us on the board of Faith’s Orphans Fund here in Canada and from Faith Liyena and her team in Zambia. As another year quickly slips away, we reflect on the fact that it has been nearly two years since we’ve had the joy of meeting and fellowshipping with Faith in Canada. Fortunately, we have been blessed by the use of technology which has allowed us to record several Zoom conversations with Faith while she is out in the FOF centres to provide on site accounts and updates for us.  

We are pleased and thankful to be able to release a 10 minute video update for you this week which you can view by clicking on the link below.  We are confident that you will be encouraged to hear of the on-going ministry to orphans and vulnerable youth in rural Zambia as well as the activities at the FOF Skills Training Centre in the city of Kitwe.  

Although Faith has been unable to travel to Canada during these past two years, FOF supporters like you have remained faithful in praying, volunteering and providing financial support to the ministry.  Once again, we have received thousands of dresses, shorts, shirts and blankets, lovingly sewn or knit by hundreds of dedicated individuals and groups across Ontario.   After being boxed, bundled and packed, this large shipment of goods left for Zambia on October 20th.  While we extend a most sincere “thank you” to all who participated in this aspect of the FOF ministry, it is the joy on the faces of the children receiving these gifts that truly expresses their thanks and blesses our hearts. 

With the financial support we have received, FOF Canada has been able to cover all school fees, skills training programs, college fees, access to Teen’s Missions camp for over 100 youth, Christmas parties as well as FOF implementor training. Additionally, in 2021 funding was provided to allow for the replacement of the FOF Toyota Prado (SUV) and utility truck, both having reached the age when the major repairs were no longer cost effective. 

August 2022 will mark 30 years of ministry for Faith’s Orphans in Zambia and will be a time of celebration. Having attended the 25th anniversary in 2017, along with a number of Canadian supporters, we are keenly aware of the significance of these milestone celebrations as God is honoured for His blessing on this ministry.  

As we enter the Christmas season, we are often asked for some gift ideas for FOF and the Zambian orphans. The items below were provided by Faith and she describes several of them in this latest video. 

  1. Freezer & Commercial Stove – to be utilized at the Skills Training Centre for student meal preparations ($850 & $4200).
  2. Tree Planting Project – 30 trees for each of the 24 centres = 720 trees x $12.50 each ($9,000).
  3. Chickens:  2 hens, a rooster and a bag of feed for 10 families in each village.  $80 per family x 240 families. ($19,200).
  4. Christmas parties – A special gift for each of the 4200 orphans and a Christmas meal for each village. $11,000 for all ($2.60 per child).  
  5. Clothing shipping fees – $50 per tightly stuffed banana box
  6. Well maintenance – 25 wells have been installed (1 for each village + the STC).   These wells are now 5-7 years old and a regular bi-annual maintenance plan is being established,  $200/well.  ($5,000)

Thank you once again for your support of the ministry of FOF to the orphaned and vulnerable children of Zambia.   It is a blessing to bear witness to what God is doing through the support of His people and through the FOF Zambia Team.   From all of us on the FOF Canada Board and the FOF Zambia Team, Merry Christmas to you and yours and may the Lord bless you in 2022.

We trust that you will enjoy the new video update from Faith.