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With Thanksgiving right around the corner, we wanted to share this story of gratitude with you.
Kheunon Ty is now 19 years old and has been in an orphanage in Cambodia since he was four years old. His parents died when he was young, leaving him and his two brothers in the care of their grandparents.
Kheunon Ty remembers that though his grandparents were old and sick, they tried their best to provide for their grandchildren. But at most they were only able to feed them one meal a day.
When Kheunon Ty and his brothers moved to the orphanage, he was surprised not only by the love that he felt, but by the ease of access to food.
“Every day I’ve had three full meals. This is so amazing to me! Still to this day I think about how difficult it was before and how easy now it is to eat,” he said. “It makes me cry, and I don’t know exactly why. But I just know I am so blessed!”
FMSC meals are saving the lives of young men like Kheunon Ty, and you are helping make that possible! May God bless you and your family this Thanksgiving season and always.
On a recent trip to a school in Haiti, Sharon Olwig of God’s Ministry in LaGonave, Inc. went from classroom to classroom and saw kids with huge smiles on their faces.
They were eating FMSC meals and socializing.
“It was just like what I felt should normally take place in a grade school cafeteria here in the states,” she said.
After serving the morning meal, teachers reported more attentive students and a better school atmosphere.
After one year of eating MannaPack meals, overall grades at that school jumped from 63 to 95 percent!
“This amazing increase proves what we were sure to be true,” Olwig said. “These children do want to learn and are very capable of it, but proper nutrition must be present.”
A daily meal at school helps kids concentrate on learning rather than their growling stomachs.
Hot lunches reduce school dropout rates by 200-300 percent in developing countries, according to the World Food Programme.
When Munu arrived at the Village of Hope’s Save a Life Center in Zambia, he weighed only 16 pounds. His face, arms and legs were swollen. The 18-month-old couldn’t even crawl.
“He cried constantly because of how much his little body hurt due to his dry, cracking skin and the swelling all over his body,” the center said.
The Village of Hope works with Children’s Cup, an FMSC distribution partner that receives MannaPack meals.
“Even though we have only been receiving MannaPacks for one year, we have seen an incredible difference in the amount of people that we are able to feed, to love, and to serve because of Feed My Starving Children,” the Village of Hope said.
The organization is able to provide full bellies to more than 400 kids a day!
Munu’s mother brought him to the center every week for FMSC meals, and after six months he gained about six pounds. His swelling went down and his skin started to heal.
Now, at about two years old, Munu’s mother can’t keep up with him because he has so much energy. He’s walking and running. The Village of Hope said he has a light in his eyes not seen before.
Malnutrition is a big cause of death for many small children in Western Zambia. In most cases their parents have died from HIV/AIDS, according to the Village of Hope.
Helping precious children like Munu is truly a team effort. Thanks to our volunteers and food partners, we can live our mission of feeding God’s children hungry in body and spirit.
We’ve heard it many times, “Be thankful for what you have.” Volunteering at Feed My Starving Children reminds us of this, but another wonderful aspect of coming to FMSC is to be inspired and feel thankful knowing about the wonderful work our food partners do around the world each day. Knowing of these organizations and the inspiring individuals they serve can help us be thankful to live in a world with such compassion in the midst of such sorrow.
One of our food partners, Children’s Cup, is a beacon of hope this holiday season. Children’s Cup provides more than 4 million FMSC meals a year to children in need. We can be thankful for the determination Children’s Cup has to make a lasting impact through sustainable community transformation and love for children in desperate need in Swaziland, Africa.
Since 1992, Children’s Cup (CC) has set up 38 CarePoints in Swaziland. A CarePoint is a place where FMSC meals, medical care, character development and education assistance are all provided to the neediest of children. Ultimately, CarePoints are where lives are changed. Children who came to CC CarePoints hungry and desperate for food have now grown into bright, hope-filled young adults, leading the way in their families and communities.
One way this FMSC food partner was able to make such a huge impact in the community was by creating a skills training program to train and empower the next generation in Swaziland. The young artisans enroll themselves in the program to learn a trade, but most importantly, they gain HOPE for a brighter future for themselves and their family.
Here is one story you can be thankful for today:
Nothando is 17 years old and lives with her grandmother, two aunts and five siblings. One aunt and her grandmother work to provide for the entire family, which is enough to keep them fed but not nearly enough to cover all of their school fees. Most of her siblings have dropped out of school, and her other aunt will not be able to finish because she can no longer pay her fees. But Nothando can.
A CarePoint kid since 2006, Nothando learned how to bead salad spoons and forks in Skills Training once she got into high school. Because of her dedication and determination, she has already paid for her first two years of high school and has a promising graduation ahead of her. Nothando loves the Lord and aspires to leave Swaziland and become a doctor.
Nothando and many other students like her are being helped through the partnership of Children’s Cup and FMSC each and every day – and for that, you can be grateful this holiday season.
With every MarketPlace purchase, you are helping a hard working young adult like Nothando build a better future for themselves – one that they never thought to imagine. Happy Thanksgiving!