Expect the Unexpected… July 2016 News

Posted by on August 1, 2016 in Blog, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Expect the Unexpected…

   That’s what we tell all people coming out to Madagascar, whether to visit or to live…. “expect the unexpected”.  Things can change quickly here–sometimes at a drop of a hat all plans for the day are flipped upside.  Maybe it’s because of a birth, or a death, or thievery, or an unplanned meeting with one of the minister’s of health or water and forestry. Sometimes it’s something that directly affects us and other times it’s something that indirectly affects us as it directly affects one of our Malagasy friends, teammates or employees.

   In the last two weeks three of these “expect the unexpected” events have occurred.  A carpenter who has a long list of items to build for the maternity center and guesthouse was hauled off to prison where he spent a week. This is because he purchased wood on a loan which is typical but when the man loaning the money wanted an immediate repayment of $160 of which the carpenter didn’t have, the police became involved.  It wasn’t until he was released from jail that we heard what happened and why, as a result, our work was severely delayed.  In the end, we fronted the money in good faith for our work to be completed and he’s now back working.  Another carpenter who is working on higher quality items for the maternity center has been two+ months behind schedule because his father has been quite ill. As the only family member available, the carpenter has been the only one bringing food to his father each day in the hospital, staying with his father day in and day out and making sure his father is turned to prevent bed sores, etc.  His father passed away last week and we provided some of the money, again in good faith, so that he can properly bury his father by traveling across country to place him in the family tomb. He’ll be back to work next week.  Friday we received the sad news that the house burned down of one of the employees with Eden Projects, a family of five.  Several Malagasy key ministry partners along with our families gathered supplies from our homes… clothes, dishes, pots and pans, etc to give to the family as they attempt to rebuild what little they had prior to the fire.
   The common thread of these “expect the unexpected” stories is the deep poverty in which many of the Malagasy people live– including those who are honest hardworking talented individuals.  The poverty here can be exhausting and overwhelming and isn’t limited to the financial poverty that most Westerners think of… yes, it’s financial poverty but it’s also poverty of justice due to corrupt systems, relational poverty due to broken community because of jealousy, sabotage and greed, health poverty due to poor medical services, environmental poverty due to massive large-scale deforestation and spiritual poverty due to a broken relationship with the Creator God, our Lord.
   It is for this reason in which we continue serving here in Madagascar.  The desire of our hearts is that the Malagasy people would be restored in Health, in Forests, and in Hope— hope both here and now but also the eternal Hope that is found only through a personal relationship with Christ.
   Please join us in prayer for these two men and their families as well as the family that recently lost their home to the fire.  Please pray with us– for wisdom, grace, patience, and love as we daily walk alongside so many that are entrenched in this deep poverty on all fronts.


Going Once, Going Twice…

   As you may know, July2016-Nathaliewe started a campaign to raise funds to purchase the maternity center property– essentially, the HUB of all of our Red Island Restoration ministries as we seek to restore HEALTH, FORESTS and HOPE!  At this time, we’ve reached 26.5% of the purchase price of $111,000 for the property.  Though the campaign will continue, the closing date to receive some amazing reward benefits is quickly approaching on August 15th!  We meet with the owners in September when they visit Madagascar from France and at this time, would like to provide them solid progress on our fundraising efforts as we together determine the upcoming purchase date.

   If  you missed all the original details of this amazing opportunity to purchase this property, click here to see the whole email.  In short, the original owners of the Sarobidy Center property have agreed to sell the 5-acre piece of property for 100,000 Euros (roughly $111,000). This property is the CENTER of the entire ministry and includes the Sarobidy Maternity Center, our classroom which doubles as our Sarobidy Creations artisan room, the office for both the maternity center and Eden Projectstwo smaller houses for staff, a large gazebo where we have our monthly church services and where our teammates hold a weekly Saturday morning Kids ClubAND Eden Reforestation Project’s research nursery, seed bank and gallery forest!  

   All donations, small and large and everything in between are 100% tax deductible through our mission organization, WorldVenture.  Upon purchase, WorldVenture, a registered non-profit in the USA, and an internationally recognized NGO here in Madagascar will own the property ensuring that the Sarobidy Center property will be used to continue to bless, serve and partner with the surrounding community for generations to come!

For donations given BY August 15th, Red Island Restoration and the Sarobidy Center would like to show our appreciation to all donors by offering the following thank you rewards… 
Any amount– video sent by email with a message of thanks from the men, women and children blessed by the Sarobidy Center… 
$100.– handwritten card (translated of course) and picture from one of the mamas at the maternity center
$250.– handcrafted Christmas Ornament made by the ladies of Sarobidy Creations
JuneSpecialOrnament 2
$500.– name etched on brick that will become the walls of the maternity waiting home PLUS picture of the finished house with YOUR brick PLUS Christmas Ornament 
JuneSpecialSarobidy 2
$1000.– small 7″ handcrafted recycled aluminum Baobab tree PLUS name etched on brick of maternity waiting home
$5,000.– large 17″ handcrafted recycled aluminum Baobab tree PLUS name etched on brick of maternity waiting home
$10,000.– A night at Antsanitia Resort, a beautiful partnering hotel 25km north of the Sarobidy Center and a site of one of Eden’s Dry Deciduous reforestation sites PLUS a nocturnal hike to see mouse lemurs, chameleons and other amazing wildlife… led by yours truly… Jamie and Neal!  PLUSlarge baobab, ornament, brick, card and video! **
$20,000.– Half-day deep sea fishing trip with Antsapeche… think BIG fish (with chance to snorkel and spearfish!) PLUS guided tour by Jamie and Neal of Eden Project’s dry deciduous nursery and reforestation site at Antsanitia PLUS large baobab, ornament, brick, card and video! **
$50,000.–  “Generous Gift From ___” plaque at the Sarobidy Center PLUS night at Antsanitia with nocturnal hike PLUS half-day deep sea fishing trip with Antsapeche and guided tour of nursery and reforestation site PLUS large baobab, ornament, brick, card and video! **
** Sorry, airfare and additional accommodations in Madagascar are not included ** 
   We humbly ask for your partnership as together we endeavor to raise the full amount to purchase the Sarobidy Center property!
To donate online: 
Click here to be directed to the dedicated Sarobidy Maternity Center page through our mission organization, WorldVenture. In the comments section, please specify “Sarobidy Center Property Purchase”
To donate by mail: 
Make your check to WorldVenture and specify #6401-909 in the memo and include an attached piece of paper stating “Sarobidy Center Property Purchase”.  Mail to: 
1501 W. Mineral Ave
Littleton, CO 80120
To donate by phone:
Call WorldVenture directly at (800) 487-4224 and ask to speak to donations. Please specify that your donation is to be directed to account #6401-909 and more specifically for the “Sarobidy Center Property Purchase”.
Remember, only those donations made on or before August 15th are eligible for a THANK YOU REWARD!  Rewards will be sent towards the end of 2016!
All donations are so incredibly appreciated and as always, are 100% tax deductible!  



   Thank you for your prayers whispered on our behalf for the departure of Selah, our amazing teacher who we dearly miss, as well as prayers for the Jensen and Brightfamilies upon their arrival and as they transition to life in Madagascar!  As I type this, both families are currently engaged in a week-long home-stay with two different Malagasy families in order to begin to learn the language, culture and build relationships.  We ask that would continue to pray for us as we transition from being a field of two families and a single in our city to now being a field of four families with a fifth family, the Gough’s, likely arriving in September to teach our kids!  The transition is undeniably real for each of us! Please pray with us for peace, unity, deep friendships and community!


   Thank you for standing with us in prayer during this time of transition, of new growth, and of unexpected events. We’re thankful that we serve a faithful Father who is all-knowing of each and every detail!

For His Glory,
Alissa, Jamie, Isabella, Eliana and Gavin

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