By Barbi Carroll
For almost three months, Mission Love Seeds, a non-profit organization based in Destin, has worked to help achieve better results and improve the lives of 28 orphans at an orphanage in Watamu, Kenya.
One of the youngest at the orphanage.
MLS first learned of the orphanage through photos, posted by Athena Marler Creamer on Facebook, that showed the children sitting inside a classroom. MLS later learned the kids were orphans and were infested with jiggers, not to be mistaken for chiggers we have here in the U.S.
The school, church, bedrooms, outdoor kitchen and all buildings on the property had dirt floors, food was scarce, and children walked long distances for their daily water supply.
After learning about the terrible conditions the orphans were living in, Mission Love Seeds began raising funds to help make life easier for them. The first call was to the Mission’s dear friend, Jane Carron of Generous Heart Ministry in Destin, who has partnered with MLS many times.
Without hesitation, Jane agreed to provide four jigger treatment clinics. Each clinic treated almost 200 orphans and villagers.
Child being treated for jiggers.
Generous Heart also agreed to provide concrete floors for the three-room school, while other supporters provided concrete floors for the orphanage and church. A wall was knocked down in the orphanage to enlarge a bedroom, and three rooms that once had dirt floors covered with vinyl flooring have been replaced with a concrete floor.
In addition, donations were made for a water line and meter for clean drinking water, 50 comfortable chairs, and tables for the children to eat on with tablecloths and flowers, and a new TV for the orphans enjoyment and educational needs through videos.
Enclosed shoes and two pair of socks were given to each child and will help keep jiggers off their feet. Cute pillowcase dresses from Presbyterian women in Destin brought smiles to little girls’ faces.
Donations also allowed the purchase of six soccer balls, school supplies, lollipops and candy, peanut butter, oats, red beans, soap, toothpaste, small toys, books, over the counter medicines, reading glasses and a huge first aid kit.
Also donated were cute toothbrushes and dental supplies from Dr. Douglas Pohl of Fort Walton Beach, and Mission donations provided a two month supply of food and a new and improved, outdoor kitchen was built with an eating area. Donations were raised for many goats and chickens as a permanent source of milk and eggs.
Earl Baumgardner and his sons
The new kitchen is safe and sanitary.
Money was donated for goats
First dinner on new tables on outdoor dining area.
Mission Love Seeds director/photojournalist Earl Baumgardner and his 16-year-old twin boys, Benjamin and Brock, just returned from Kenya where they checked on Mission’s work.
All the projects planned by MLS have now been completed at the orphanage in Watamu.
Mission Love Seeds is now moving on and working on new projects to provide basic needs to those living in deplorable conditions in Bondo, Kenya, where the only water sources are from the local dam or rain water. The children and their needs are tremendous, and, with the generosity of MLS supporters, we are able to do our part and share the love of Jesus Christ.
Thank you to all the Mission supporters who helped make all this possible.
Mission Love Seeds teams up with many organizations on a regular basis, working together as one. When the projects are completed, Mission then continues to work their own projects.
The Mission’s work in Watamu has been completed, but our work in Kenya and Africa has just begun, as our work in the Philippines continues.
To stay updated on Mission Love Seed’s work or to make a donation, visit www.missionloveseeds.org or the Facebook page Mission Love Seeds Charity.
Barbi Carroll is president of Mission Love Seeds which she co-founded with her husband, John Hawbaker, in 2004.
This article first appeared in The Destin Log, June 7, 2014.