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March 15, 2017

Ag Team 2017 Post Trip Update

It was day seven of our trip when I finally shared a specific thought with my team which had been on my mind and in my heart. With every ounce of honesty I shared, “Out of the trips I have done – Haiti, Nicaragua – this one has hands down been the most impactful and powerful for me.” I meant it wholeheartedly. The “God moments” our team experienced each and every day, the way I felt the Holy Spirit like I never had before when worshiping with our Kenyan brothers and sisters in Christ, the absolute miracles He blessed us with (even leading up to the trip), how hard working the students and teachers at REM were – I simply cannot find the words to fully capture the experience. Most importantly, I saw immense hope in the eyes of those in Kenya!

 

Our team’s mission through GOYA was Agriculture based. Agriculture lends itself to some great spiritual truths. Through analogy, it can show us how we can cultivate spiritual growth, work hard, and be watered by the Gospel. Our team embraced this concept and wove it into each of our efforts, with the focus being on REM High School. While we worked to support a drainage project, landscaping updates, a chicken coup and spiritual formation workshops, a highlight for our team was having the pleasure of partnering with Healing Hands International to conduct a two-day Food Security Workshop.

 

Form 2 students (the equivalent of high school sophomores here in the States) spent two days participating in the workshop, including classroom lessons and hands on field experience. On day one, the students worked hard to complete eight raised plots in the field – digging the trenches, working through the compost steps, and leveling the beds. Day two rounded out the project with construction of eight bucket based drip irrigation systems and the planting of various seeds/seedlings including kale, green beans, watermelon and more. The students worked incredibly hard and used what they had around the school to create something which will provide sustainable food sources for REM Schools in the near future. Since our team departed Kenya, the students have used the skills they learned to created an additional eight beds planted with nutritious, healthy foods for future consumption. The plan is to continue duplicating, growing and harvesting additional plots. We thank our friends at Healing Hands International for their biblical based teaching and guidance with the students, along with their gracious donation of supplies which allow students to create additional plots.

 

Our team recognizes the work at REM Schools in Kenya is not done, and we vow to continue partnering with GOYA to make the vision of agricultural independence a reality. We also recognize our eight team members cannot do this alone. So today, on behalf of our team, I am asking for your support. First and foremost, please continue to pray for GOYA and REM Schools. More specifically, please pray for and consider additional support for the agriculture efforts, which we hope will ultimately mean food independence for the schools. The sooner food independence is obtained at the schools, the sooner we can relieve personal and budgetary stress for our friends in Kenya. You are welcome to financially support these efforts through GOYA Online Giving, making special note you would like your gift allocated to agriculture efforts.

 

My sincerest thanks in advance!

Sarah Franzen 

 

“Now this I say, he who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each one must do just as he has purposed in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed.”  2 Corinthians 9:6-11

 

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