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When I moved to Nigeria I had my first experience with absolute poverty.  Adults and children with no electricity or sanitation and unable to meet the basic needs for food, shelter and drinking water.  No access to social services such as healthcare or education.  No assets.  

As of 2015, the three countries with the greatest number of people living in extreme poverty are:
– India (175 million)
– Nigeria (86 million)
– Democratic Republic of Congo (55 million) 

It was overwhelming.  How was I going to make a difference when the needs were so much bigger than me? How was I going to make an impact in the most populated and poverty stricken country in all of Africa?

Have you ever felt this way?  So many ministries and nonprofits in need of support.  It’s overwhelming.  The need is so great. You wonder how your donation can make any impact?

Or perhaps you are cautious. Will my donation even reach the needed recipient after all the fees and ministry costs?

Well, most of you know where I am going …all that I do begins and ends with C.A.R.E. Africa. 

We began C.A.R.E. Africa with just two small children.  

We always want to think big…Build a School, Dig a Bore Hole, Feed a Village, Stop Sex Trafficking. These are all worthy causes but some of us want smaller, obtainable causes. 

So, sponsor just one small child.  Provide that one child with an education and access to healthcare.  Put your focus on just one child and maybe that child will Build a School, Feed a Village, Dig a Bore Hole or Stop Sex Trafficking when they grow up – thanks to you. 

Or sponsor a lunch feeding program for children. This program provides the nutrition many of these children lack. Instead of focusing on their hunger they can focus on their schooling. They will make better grades giving them the confidence to achieve more and go further in their education. A small change that will make a big difference in their future. 

Or you could help with needed vehicle repairs. Small and obtainable but with a big impact. Without transportation – attendance to school and our Awana and discipleship programs would be disrupted.  Our vehicles are essential as many of our children live remotely and depend on us for transporting them daily.

Small Changes Make a Big Difference!

These are just a few examples of how you can help us make small changes with big impacts. The best part is that all our small changes come with update videos and photos so you can see your donations at work in the lives of the people you helped.

Start making small changes now so you can help us make a huge difference globally.

Follow us on Donorsee to stay updated on all our projects. https://donorsee.com/icareafrica.org?follow After every project is funded, you and all the other donors will receive a follow up video so you can see your donation at work and hear from the recipients you helped. You will be able to see, know and hear that your donation to that small project made a big difference.

Jeremiah 20:9
But if I say, “I will not mention his word or speak anymore in his name,” his word is in my heart like a fire, a fire shut up in my bones. I am weary of holding it in; indeed, I cannot.

Recycle With C.A.R.E. Africa Please! We need your chip and cookie bags!

A dream of mine has been to have the women at C.A.R.E. Africa learn how to make the candy wrapper purse so we can sell them at markets. These adorable purses are not easy to make! Each purse takes 6 strips of 50 pieces each. That is 300 pieces that have to be cut and folded and joined together. Check out the video attached.

Please save you bags! The sale of these purses will help put food on the tables of several women at C.A.R.E. Africa. If you live in Louisville I can pick them up once you have a box filled. If you don’t live in Louisville then you can ship to me. They are so light and shipping them isn’t expensive. Email me at patrice@icareafrica.org and I will give you my address for shipping.

Thanks for recycling with C.A.R.E. Africa!

We are excited to have the opportunity to send some needed items to Nigeria for our kids and our school. Can you help? Check out our Amazon Gift List at https://www.amazon.com/registries/custom/36KCX0BCJG62W/guest-view and donate in any way you can.

We always do our best to buy in country and support the Nigerian economy. Sometimes there are items that we either cannot buy there or the quality isn’t the same so we prefer to purchase in the U.S. Thank you for helping us in anyway you can to get these needed items to Nigeria. If you are local to Louisville and want to donate items, email me at patrice@icareafrica.org and I will be happy to pick up.

We also would love to send letters from our sponsors. If you are a sponsor you should have received an email from me already about sending your child a letter and picture. If you didn’t receive it please message me at patrice@icareafrica.org.

We are also seeking donations for the $400 in luggage fees we will need to pay. Those donations can be made to our general fund at give.icareafrica.org.

Are you Salty?

Posted: March 25, 2021 by Patrice Miles in Patrice Miles

You are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has lost its flavor? Can you make it salty again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless. You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.
(Matthew 5:13-16)

I recently visited Walmart and there was a lady in front of me as I entered the store. She grabbed a cart and then I grabbed the next one. I followed her as she began to walk through the entrance and then she stopped right in the middle of the opening of the electronic doors. She grabbed a wet wipe and started to wipe down her entire cart. There was no room to enter the store as she was blocking the entire entrance. I immediately thought;

How rude and inconsiderate!

Why are you going to make everyone wait on you as you wipe down your cart?

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I inched towards her thinking maybe she didn’t realize I was there and she looked up and moved a few inches and said, “Oh, Sorry!” and then continued to wipe down her cart. There still wasn’t enough room for me to get around her so I inched even closer. The same thing happened again and this time I was able to get around her. As I was passing by her she finished wiping her cart and started to enter the store right next to me. She looked at me and said in a very condescending way, “Thanks so much for waiting so patiently for me.” My immediate reaction was, “No problem!” and hurried in an opposite direction. I could not believe she had the nerve to say that to me in that way. I was so frustrated now. Frustrated I had to wait, frustrated someone thought their time was more important than mine and then frustrated that she had thought I was the rude and inconsiderate just because I didn’t want to wait on her to wipe her cart down.

Really….all I wanted to do was peacefully go out and get some groceries. People are so rude!

A few days later one of my moms took me to the hospital for a medical procedure. From the moment we parked in the garage every person we came in contact with received a, “Good morning!” “How are you?” “I love your shirt!” “Your earrings are adorable, where did you get them?” From the annoyed receptionist at the waiting desk, to the busy nurse rushing in to get me hooked up to the anesthesiologist, every person was warmly greeted by her. It was so funny to meet each person in the hospital and see their agenda on their face and the moment my mom started talking to them, their shoulders started to relax, they slowed their pace and engaged in conversation. Every one of them ended up leaving us with a big smile on their face. 

God totally used this to show me what Matthew 5:13-16 is all about.

I want to be salty like my mom.

I want to add a little flavor into each person’s life and watch them walk away with a smile on their face.

There wasn’t a single person that day with my mom that walked away saying something condescending to us or frustrated with us. I know that every person she came in contact with left with a cup filled of Joy and spilling out onto the next patient and the next patient and the next patient. I cannot say the same thing about the lady at Walmart I came in contact with or even myself. We were both probably rude and frustrated with every person the rest of the day because of our little three minutes interaction with each other at the Walmart entrance.

What a difference a little salt can make in someone’s life and everyone else they come in contact with!

Dear God,
Help me to be salty in a world of sin where spiritual decay is happening all around me. In a dull and mundane life, help my joy and creativity bring flavor to other people’s lives. Let the world see You through me. Help me to be salty.
Amen

Over a year ago our C.A.R.E. Africa leadership team decided we needed to start saving and fundraising for a bus. We had almost 70 children in our program and driving multiple trips in a minivan to pick up as many kids as we could was no longer an option.

I had no clue how much it would cost to buy a bus in Nigeria. Emma researched and started sending me pictures of used ones that were around $30,000…. I almost threw up. We had never raised that much money before. I feel like all I do is ask for support for C.A.R.E. Africa and now I had to ask for $30,000!   Oh my goodness, can I just go hide some place. This was just too big an ask.  It would take years to raise that amount of money. I was overwhelmed.

Emma, our spiritual warrior, reminded me that God would provide and encouraged me to not put God in a box or limit what God could do. We started praying for the bus project every Tuesday at our prayer meeting. We began putting aside $500 a month for the Bus project. Then we put the word out letting people know we needed a bus. I am telling you – it was amazing how God opened doors.  Here are just a few of the stories.

We had a donor reach out to tell us they had a car they were going to sell and donate all the proceeds to the Bus project. He sold the car and mailed us the check.  When it arrived, I was thinking a few thousand dollars, but no, it was $14,000!

My home church chose to use our Bus Project for one of their missions offering in their Children’s Church Ministry. We would receive all offerings collected from the Children’s Church Ministry over a two month period. Then COVID hit and church was closed. I thought for sure the funds would never happen but even with COVID they raised $2,400 in offerings from the children for our Bus project!

We were close to our goal when I received a text from a friend asking what needs C.A.R.E. Africa had and I said “We need a bus!” A few minutes later a $1,350 donation came through. We were now only $1,002 shy of the $30,000 needed for the bus. I put a post on Facebook with our Donor See site and in just 2 hours the bus project was fully funded!  WE BOUGHT A BUS!!

To those of you out there that feel like something is overwhelming or just too big for you – you are right! It is too big for you…. but not for God. Trust that when God puts something on your heart He will provide!

 

Birthdays at C.A.R.E. Africa are the latest rave! Thanks to our new volunteer Birthday Advocate, Hilary Wang, our children have their very own special day.

In the U.S. childrens’ birthdays are celebrated in many different ways. From full blown theme parties, to petting zoos and bouncy houses – every child has their special day. Even families who live on a smaller scale in the US generally celebrate with a cake, gifts and the singing of happy birthday to their child.

In Nigeria, that is not the case. Most of our kids in C.A.R.E. Africa don’t even know their birth date. Not until we get birth certificates do they know when they were born. Some don’t have birth certificates, so we choose a birth date for them. Normally, only the wealthy in Nigeria can splurge on a cake and a gift for their child. Well not anymore!!

Check out some of the pictures of children at C.A.R.E. experiencing Christ’s love on their birthdays! Our sponsors are responding to this need and allowing us to make certain each birthday child gets to celebrate their special day of the year!! Thanks you sponsors!

If you haven’t heard already, Louisville Kentucky will be our new home. I am excited to announce that I will be assuming the position of the Executive Director at C.A.R.E. Africa, Inc. I will continue to work in an administrative role in donor relations, child sponsorship, and marketing. As Executive Director, I will now also coordinate with the board of directors and those on the ground in Egbe to facilitate growth of the C.A.R.E. Africa ministry.  I will also travel back and forth from the U.S. and Nigeria several times a year to continue to oversee operations.

 

C.A.R.E. Africa, Inc. has been a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) since July 2017. God has grown the ministry PHYSICALLY with more children, staff and programs in Egbe; SPIRITUALLY with lessons learned through fellowship and studying His word; and EMOTIONALLY as we have dealt with COVID and the effects on our children and caregivers.

  • We currently have 73 children being taken care of by 60 caregivers in the town of Egbe.
  • Our school (Foundations Academy Egbe) is in its 3rd year and currently enrolls children from nursery to 7th grade.
  • Secondary School (Middle/High School) is under construction.
  • Two C.A.R.E. Africa children are in university and two are waiting on admission.
  • Vocational school under construction with plans for providing classes in baking, sewing, hairdressing, barbering and shoe repair.
  • Weekly AWANA (Approved Workers are not Ashamed) and High School Discipleship.
  • Monthly community service programs where our kids are able to give back to the community.
  • Our transition home is being remodeled and currently houses five C.A.R.E. Africa children
  • Monthly sports outreach in Egbe and surrounding towns has been successful in leading others to Christ.
  • Seamstress program with six women sewing for our Etsy store at www.CareAfricaStore.com

 

Our family is excited to have finally planted our feet somewhere. As of January 4th we officially became home owners and are excited to see what this next chapter of our lives will hold for our family and C.A.R.E. Africa. Lenny has started a remodeling company call GR8 Home Improvements. You can visit him at http://www.GR8hi.com.  Cason is planning on heading to EKU this fall and Jolie is praying she gets to go to school in person at Dupont Manual High school someday soon. Titi has only 3 semesters left at Lancaster Bible College. Our Nigeria Golden Retriever, Tuck, is doing great and loving all the cats and squirrels everywhere. We added a little one to our family and his name is “Biggie” and he is such a funny little puppy.

Thank you to everyone that has supported our family over the past 8 years through prayer and or finances.

Thank you to everyone that is continuing to support our ministry directly through C.A.R.E. Africa.  We feel like God is up to something big and we cannot do it without the support of loyal donors.

By: Emma Salako

We have been trying for some years now to bring a sports team from Jos all the way to Egbe.  Finally, the Lord answered our prayers in November and the team came to Egbe. I can tell you that it was a glorious moment of change and discipleship. The first game was played against Vessel’s F.C of Egbe which ended at 0-0. We shared the gospel with all the players and the crowd that had gathered. The second game was played against Egbe Mekun F.C and ended up at 0-0. Both games went well and there were no injuries and no fights, which is rare for football games in Nigeria. Many players made a vow to be committed to their game and not just their game but to God also. The team from Jos was able to share experiences with Egbe players and relationships were built. We have now been invited to Jos to play and the team from Jos wishes to return to Egbe and stay for one week to help drill the young youths and have more outreaches to neighboring towns.

Overall we thank God for this amazingly peaceful event and all the lives that were committed to Christ and relationships that were built with many other football players around Nigeria.  God is definitely using this sports program to spread the gospel to the men of Nigeria. These men will return home and share the good news with their friends and families. As you support this ministry you too are fulfilling God’s great command found in Matthew 28:19 “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations.”

Check out our Etsy store this year for meaningful gifts for Christmas. All purchases help support our programs and school in Egbe while also empowering a Nigerian artisan. Check out a few of the people your purchase helps. Visit www.CareAfricaStore.com to pick that special gift for that special someone. 

Seamstresses in Egbe

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Josephine

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Threads & Light Ministry

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ibrahim

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kids in School

There is Black Friday, Cyber Monday and then #GivingTuesday!

Since the last #GivingTuesday donors have generously given over $19,000 toward our bus project. We need $10,000 more to complete this project and buy our bus!

Help us “make the wheels on the bus go round and round” for the C.A.R.E. Africa kids. Click https:https://donorsee.com/bus

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