Thursday, June 8, 2017

Day 8: How to break the cycle

Thanks for stopping by to read my day 8 blog entry!

Disclaimer: I'm a writer by nature. If I've got something to share, it just pours out across the keyboard and there it is. My thought is, if you're a reader and you're very curious about the challenge, then I want you to find something to actually read. For the others of you, there are the italics, bolded phrases, and photos. But I don't post these thinking the average visitor actually reads every word, as most of us in this day and age are skimmers. So if you're a reader and you enjoy following my posts and finding out how I'm doing, then fantastic, I'm glad you're able to connect with me in this way; if not, and you just stopped by to see what I ate today, that's cool too. We're all different in how we process information.

The new normal. I'm entering the phase now where I think my body is getting the clue that something has changed and this is the new normal. Hunger before meals is definitely present, but I'm managing ok. I've discovered that just 10-12 raisins with a dash of cinamon and salt happens to be a great little boost, by the way.  I've been enjoying that snack at mid-afternoon a few days and that really helps to stem the hunger pangs and gives a nice little boost of energy. Maybe it's just psychological, but when you're seriously hungry, anything helps.

The great bean fiasco. In not so great news, I realized I mis-allocated my pinto bean rations and will have less beans the next 22 days than I realized; just a quarter-cup (dry) a day. I may choose to go "bean-free" a few days in order to have more to work with on the "bean-on" days. But with my bonus egg days, I think I should be able to hold out ok on the protein front; I get two eggs a day but three every other day. And I'm holding really well on my brown rice rations. I can do a lot with brown rice and just a few beans.

Major breakthrough on the recipe front tonight. It turns out if you just add a little pasta sauce to the top of your toastadas, you've got a really zesty tasting Mexican pizza. I had been saving up my pasta sauce rations the last 4 days or so, so that was nice to dole out some good quantity of flavor there. I'm really pleased with the way it turned out! I'll write more about that later.

Super fantastic amazing news! Great news on my charitable goal front! Since my blog post last night, we have THREE new monthly heart-sponsors on the "Heart-Chart"! $29/mo, $33/mo, and $44/mo were all sponsored! Look at how much love you're looking at right here! And remember, when all 265 hearts on our chart are sponsored monthly, that means all of our programs will be secure in their funding (coupled with their own small business enterprise profits) and we can focus on more imporant things than fundraising, like improving our programs to better care for the children we serve.

This is huge wind in my sails, and I think it should be in yours too! Together, we're making a difference.

I'm dedicating day 8 of the challenge to the children of the Secunderabad Landfill Scavenger's Colony in South India. These children live in makeshift homes with no electricity, no running water, no toilets, and share handmade cots with their siblings in small one-room shanties. They engage in hazardous child labor alongside their parents because their families are so desperate to earn money.

I am often able to bring back framed "portrait-presents" shot on previous visits
A girl dirtied from sifting through charred trash to find recyclables.
A child perhaps 4 years old has already learned to disasemble lightbulbs
This barefoot girl was looking through the trash for scrap metal
Another barefoot child scavenger, with a foot injury. I helped find him first aid.

In the midst of this slum colony is the Peace Gospel "Children's Hope Center" where several dozen children are enrolled in our after-school care program. Our teams work hard to convince parents to enroll their children in local schools instead of keeping them home to work beside them. One of the major hesitations that parents of the slums have in enrolling their children in school is that they, many being illiterate themselves, would have no idea how to help their children with homework. That's where our tutoring and after-school care program comes into play. We also give the children a fresh cooked meal before heading home, so they do not go to sleep hungry.  

This is the result of your generosity and consistent support, and all of us working together to achieve something far greater than we ever could on our own! From the trash heap to the classroom... this is how we can break the cycle of extreme poverty when we come together...

Charitable goal update. In order to reach my goal of finding 50 new "heart sponsors" on my "Heart-Chart" I hope to see two new "monthly hearts" on the "Heart-Chart" sponsored.

For those of you just tuning in, I'll recap what I'm trying to achieve with the "Heart-Chart" and my goal of finding 50 new sponsors for these "hearts" which I like to think of as representing lives being transformed and, ultimately, saved.

Why am I seeking monthly donors? The orphan care, child labor response, and human trafficking response programs we've pioneered at Peace Gospel and She Has Hope— while sustained in part by small business enterprise— need charitable support to be fully sustained. The budgets of these programs have fixed, monthly expenses. Thus, while one-time donations are deeply appreciated, it's the monthly donations that give us something to count on and plan with. Thus, long-term, they're the most powerful.

What I need next to stay on track for my goal. For day eight, I need two people to sponsor the $34/mo and $36/mo hearts on our "Heart-Chart"— this means you're willing to make a small monthly sacrifice to help ensure that the following merciful actions are fully funded each month. With your help, our monthly budget enables us to…
  • Provide resident care for 290 orphans in 11 homes in Asia and Africa
  • Operate 4 schools and 4 after-school care programs reaching over 1000 children
  • Serve approx. 50,000 fresh meals to children in our programs
  • Train 100s of girls how to avoid the dangers of human trafficking
  • House, rehabilitate and empower 20 girls recovering from human trafficking

On to what I was able to create with just $1 worth of food today. I was happy with another variety on the soufflé this morning, but the crowning moment of the day was in the Mexican pizza at dinner. This small twist of including the pasta sauce on top added huge flavor, and in this challenge, diversity makes all the difference.

Click or tap on image to enlarge...




Take Action!

1) Please consider helping me reach my goal to find 50 new "Sustainers"— donors willing to give a small amount each month toward our work helping vulnerable children and trafficking survivors. Learn more and sign up here!

2) Please visit my unofficial sponsor, through this link. 7% of your purchases made through the link are given to the work of Peace Gospel's programs helping orphans, at-risk children of the slums, and human trafficking survivors.

3) If you're compelled by my effort here, please share it with friends. One of the main goals is awareness. So if you can help with that, huge.

4) Leave me feedback. Please comment on this post, especially if you have any ideas about what I should try to cook with these ingredients I have available. I love hearing from you! It really helps!

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