Archive for the ‘Volunteers’ Category

DSC_0226This is a great prayer letter that Carmen Marflak sent out. She is currently serving at Egbe Hospital for one month. This is her 5th time to Egbe Hospital. She makes a great observation that there is so many opportunities to serve in Egbe. Medical being the biggest need but anyone can come on a mission trip or serve short or long term and find a place to be God’s hands and feet because there is ministry going on all over the Egbe community. For more information about all the opportunities to serve email jos.sta@sim.org or visit www.egbehospital.com .

Monday, the 16, started out with a full day of surgeries. All day long, I kept watching the clock because I knew we were not going to be finished in enough time for AWANA’s at C.A.R.E. Africa. There was a prayer in my heart all day, for the Lord to “speed up” the surgeon’s hands. Well, God answers prayer! We sent the last patient back to the ward at 3:30; I ran back to the guest house, took a 2 minute cold shower, put on street clothes, grabbed the salvation bracelets, and walked out the door as Emma was driving up to get me.

DSC_0209We had a great time at AWANA’s. There were not the 190+ kids there; there was only about 170 because it was raining and the roads and walking paths were very slick and muddy. The silence in the room was also a miracle. I walked in with the children laughing and talking, noisy!!!!!. Emma raised both his arms and said silence! You could have heard a pin drop. And they remained that way until I was finished telling the story of how Jesus died for our sins, makes us clean and whole inside, helps us to grow in our faith, and prepares a place for us in Heaven. It was an exhausting day, but so exciting and rewarding!

Every Tuesday at 2:30, Dr Jen (one of the SIM missionary doctors) leads a hospital Womens Bible Study. Change of shift here in Nigeria is 2:15. So several of the women from each of the departments come regularly to this Bible Study. For the last 3 months they have been going through the Book of John. Last week they were in chapter 12. So, fortunately, last week, those of us in the OR were finished by 2:30 and could actually make it to Bible Study. There were 14 of us last week. It is a pleasure to listen and answer their questions, and see the eyes light up when they grasp what God is trying to teach them. It is a joy to hear of their struggles and how God has answered prayers. It is also a real treat for me to build a relationship with the other women in the hospital, as well as the ones I work with every day in the OR.

DSC_0521These last 2 weeks in the OR have almost been overwhelming. My first day in the OR was the 11th and I have actually had 1 day off (Sunday, the 22). Tuesdays and Thursdays are supposed to be clinic/office day for Dr Fabruce, with no surgery scheduled on those days. So I am scheduled for lectures for the family practice residents, the Anesthesia trainees, and for the nursing students. But, even on those days, there have been so many emergent patients come through ER, that we have been working late into the evenings. Between all the trauma patients (motor bike accidents, walls collapsing on families, machete fights), the C/Sections, the appendectomies, perforated bowels and the snake bites, we have done very few elective/ scheduled procedures. On Monday, Wed, Friday, we normally start out with 3-4 scheduled procedures, but by the end of the day we have done between 5-7. All last week and this week, the only anesthesia providers have been Jummy and me. Evelyn is on maternity leave, Rebecca and Adeola are both on vacation. We have been getting a little weary by the time we finish the day. But God is good and gives us both a restful sleep at night. I am reminded of

Psalms 3:5 and 4:8, I will lie down and sleep, I wake again because the Lord sustains me.” And “In peace I will lie down and sleep for you alone, Lord, make me dwell in safety”

DSC_0383 (2)Last Wednesday, a team of mothers and their teen children (10 altogether) came from my home church (Live Oak Christian Church) in Bluffton, SC. They experienced a lot of flight cancellations, and lost luggage (the last of their luggage arrived last evening), but they have been serving over at C.A.R.E. Africa all week; painting the school, doing VBS, making home visits to the sponsored children, visiting the HIV clinic. It has been a joy to have company!!! I am usually alone in the guest house. I don’t get to see them much, because I am finished with breakfast and in the hospital before they get to the dining room. Many evenings, I have missed dinner because of late cases, but the times that we have shared together have been good; hearing what they have done, and the stories of the C.A.R.E. Africa children, helps me to realize that there is another world out there in Egbe, that I rarely get to see. Mission service here in Egbe entails a lot more than just the hospital; God’s Word, Love, and Compassionate service is being made known throughout the community by cooperating groups and missions. It is exciting to see how God works in other areas besides medicine!

DSC_0067Over a year ago, while looking for HIV/AIDS resources for Spring of Life Egbe counseling center, I stumbled across a hospital in Jos called Faith Alive.  What started out as a small clinic for HIV/AIDS patients is now a three-story hospital that serves over 10,000 patients a month with various medical problems, provides ongoing care for HIV/AIDS patients, provides maternity care and performs about  3-4 surgeries each day. What makes Faith Alive unique is that all medical care is offered free of charge. Dr. Chris Isichei , Founder of Faith Alive, relies on local Nigerian doctors to volunteer their time outside of their regular jobs at other hospitals.  Dr Chris has been a source of encouragement and help to me in my ministries in Egbe over the past year. When I asked how could I help him, his only request was for more volunteers.

After some research and legalities I was able to establish a partnership agreement between SIM, my mission organization, and Faith Alive. Now I am able to help Dr. Chris by recruiting missionaries to come serve at Faith Alive Hospital.

DSC_0040My first volunteer (guinea pig) is Carman Marflak.  Carman is a nurse anesthetist who has made several mission trips to ECWA Hospital Egbe and is also a member of one of our supporting churches back home in America.  She was coming to ECWA Egbe Hospital for her 5th visit and was interested in seeing our ministries in Jos.  I was excited to tell her about the needs of Faith Alive Hospital and she agreed to come serve!  

At the time of writing this post, Carman Marflak has almost completed her 2 weeks at Faith Alive in Jos. During her time here the staff have been trained and encouraged.  She has improved their spinal block techniques, taught them how to place OI needles and has started organizing the operating room (OR).  Carman has also given several lectures at University of Jos to medical and nurse anesthetist students. I visited her at the OR a few days ago and the smiles and thank you’s from the staff for letting “Grandma” come were overwhelming. The staff of Faith Alive have fallen in love with Carman and I know she has fallen in love with them.

IMG_1901It hasn’t been easy being our volunteer guinea pig. The OR at Faith Alive is under equipped.  They need a new anesthesia machine, new OR beds, running water, better sterilization equipment and so much more.  Many times Carman was the only anesthetist available due to a shortage of nurses on surgery days.  “Grandma” Carman has survived an exhausting but rewarding two-weeks and her experience is helping me better prepare future medical volunteers for their service at Faith Alive. We currently have 2 pre med students and 2 nurses coming to Jos in June and a general surgeon is coming long term next year!

IMG_1958If you or someone you know is interested in medical missions, please email us at jos.personnel@sim.org. Faith Alive is only one of our many medical missions opportunities. We also have an amazing revitalized hospital in the bush of Egbe with an eye and dental clinic called ECWA Hospital Egbe, we have an eye clinic in Kano that serves a predominantly Muslim population call Kano Eye Hospital,  and the largest VVF (Vesico-Vaginal Fistula) clinic in the world located in Jos that ministers to women from the “North”. In addition we have several community health and medical outreach opportunities throughout Nigeria.  If you are looking to serve in a foreign country- come visit us in Nigeria. I promise it will be a rewarding experience you will never forget!  

See this latest video my husband, SIM Communications Specialist, put together about Medical Missions in Nigeria. https://vimeo.com/272002516

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DSC_0235At the beginning of 2018 we made a list of goals for C.A.R.E. Africa. One of our goals was a one-week camp for our C.A.R.E. Africa kids which would focus on their walk with the Lord and provide some vocational training. We knew it would be a huge undertaking financially and strategically. First, we would have to find experienced workers to run the camp. Then we would have to provide transportation for all the workers to and from our town of Egbe along with housing and feeding them for a week. We would also need a week’s worth of food to feed the kids along with supplies for vocational studies. Needless to say, we could not fit the camp into our 2018 budget but we kept the camp on our goals list with the hope of raising funds for it later on. Do I need to tell you that I serve an awesome God! He provided an unexpected donation and just like that our dream of a one-week camp became a reality!

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No one at C.A.R.E. Africa had any experience running a camp so we consulted with City Ministries, based in Jos, Nigeria. City Ministries is made up of several urban ministry units. One of the ministries called King’s Kids has over 300 orphan and street kids in their programs. City Ministries not only offered to run the one-week camp but also to teach us how to run our own camps for the future.

We were excited and clueless as to the amount of work that goes into hosting a one-week camp.  C.A.R.E. Africa staff in Egbe started buying large quantities of food and locating accommodations for all the City Ministries staff. Meanwhile, back in Jos, I began the search for curriculum, vocational and many other supplies we would need to make ready for transport to Egbe. Everything came together and the C.A.R.E. Africa kids had an amazing time!

DSC_0541The camp theme and camp lessons focused on Faith. We had two children, Bolu and “Big” Success come to accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior. The vocational studies included how to make Palm Sandals and how to make Beaded Jewelry. One of our older boys, Tunde, really took to making palm sandals and we look forward to seeing what God does with that.

It was also a very special time for our C.A.R.E. Africa CEO Emma and Elisha of City Ministries. Elisha knew Emma when he was an 8 year old orphan at City Ministries. It was very rewarding for Elisha to see that Emma had used his personal experience to found and help the orphans of C.A.R.E. Africa. This camp was a great success story on so many levels.

You are part of our story as your prayers and financial support make our outreach programs such as this one-week camp possible. I hope you know the difference you are making in the lives of so many. Thank-you and God Bless you greatly.

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I’ve been busy that’s for sure…

I’ve created SIM Nigeria’s Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Vimeo accounts. I of course stay busy finding and putting content on these social media pages for maximum exposure. I’ve been to several local events to film or take pictures to publish on our media sites. I’ve recently revised and published two very important brochures that SIM Nigeria uses for recruitment of short term missionaries as well as medical missionaries.

Along with all of this, there has also been a lot of traveling for me over the past few months in order to get video of four Theological colleges where SIM missionaries can come to serve. One of the colleges is about a 14 hour drive away from where we live.  Another college is three hours away and yet another is about six hours away. This last one being located almost to the most northern border of Nigeria. Each visit consisted of many interviews with educators, administrators, and students. After all of the travel, I’ve spent about 60 hours editing this one video. The purpose of this is to get people excited about the opportunities to serve with SIM Nigeria if they are a professor or educator. Click the picture to see the video.

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This will be longest of a series of videos I will complete for theological education in Nigeria. The idea would be to provide shorter versions of this to get people excited and if they should want more information, then they can watch this longer seven minute video.

Overall, my role here with SIM Nigeria is being well received by our fellow missionaries, who’s excitement is growing as they see the potential of helping their ministries. Also, our administration is enthused about this becoming a huge recruitment tool for our field. Some of the biggest excitement is from our Nigerian church, ECWA. These brothers and sisters who are ministering all over Nigeria, see the potential to provide a huge tool for them to reach the lost.

Pray for me as my work load is not getting smaller, but rather bigger. Upcoming, I will be working on videos and materials for medical missions, youth ministries, ministering to those marginalized & vulnerable in our society, short-term missions, the persecuted church, indigenous missions, trauma healing ministries, and so much more! Also, pray for workers, as the harvest is plentiful.

 

This was my second visit to Egbe since moving to Jos. I was so impressed with my team and how great they are doing. We were very busy of course meeting with various community leaders, interviewing new children for our programs and also preparing for Christmas. Check out some of the photos of my trip!

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Baba and his wife our chief encourager! He comes to the CARE center a few times a month and prays with my staff and encourages them,

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Writing to their penpals in the states.

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Last AWANA of the year.

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Last AWANA of the year. 

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Home Visit to a new intake.

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New Intake Visit

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CARE staff

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Christmas Cards for the sponsors.

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December Birthdays

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Last CARE Africa Child Celebration of the month. They all received a package of clothes, jollof rice, drinks, and candy.

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Secretary Cecilia……accounting, accounting, accounting, accounting!

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My babies

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Clothing Donation

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Clothing packages for the kids.

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Caregiver check ups.

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Donation from the states for the caregivers. 

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Someone gave the money they would have given for teacher appreciation gifts to us for food for our caregivers and the kids. They will be putting this picture in each card for the teacher letting them know what their gift went towards.

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Gifts from sponsors

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Caregiver presentation of the CARE Africa fabric for all events.

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Dinner under the moon with Chief Doyin and his wife. Chief continues to support us with wise counsel as he is known by the Ilegbe of Egbe as the Egbe Encyclopedia. 

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My daugher, Titi.

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Our visitors leaving their mark on our center.

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Meeting with the King to discuss the future of CARE Africa and their recommendations.

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Tofunmi (Secretary Cecilia’s baby)….our mascot

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Mommy and Me! Our Caregiver Manager

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Quick stop to the Fulani village to say hello. Do you recognize this women. She is on the Miles in Missions brochure.

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My amazing and fearless driver. I don’t know what I would do without him.

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Packed and loaded for the journey back to Jos. Notice some Nigerians in the back……story in the upcoming week.

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Nothing Good Comes Easy

bebeeteamI recently was blessed to get to hear a friend tell about her experience when she came to Nigeria and worked in our ministry. She made a statement that really stuck with me. She told a story of the first time she visited Nigeria and was on the bus to Egbe. She asked a national on the bus, “Wouldn’t you just prefer us to send all the money that this trip cost instead of actually coming?” The national replied “No! Your presence is worth more than your money.”

Spending money to come to Nigeria versus sending the money to Nigeria has long been a struggle for many who desire to come visit us.  The average cost per person for airfare, accommodations and meals is $2,000.  A five (5) person mission trip would cost about $10,000.  That could buy a bus for our ministry right now! But you heard it from the mouth of a native Nigerian. “Your presence is worth more than your money!”

17309453_10155029234743808_2000218112937027946_nI have witnessed the effects your visit has on the nationals when short term mission trips are done right.   I notice the smiles my staff, kids and caregivers carry on their faces, the change of attitude, and I see their renewed spirit.  For people to leave their loved ones, their home and country to come meet us and encourage us is invaluable.  We all are impacted. We all see Jesus through a different cultural lens.  The nationals see openness, vulnerability, humility, sacrifice, words of affirmation and so many other things that are not normal for Nigerian culture. The love they receive from you fills them so much that they are spilling over. Christ’s love is being spread to others for weeks after your team leaves.

Last Import - 405 of 581I am not saying that we don’t need money. We have ongoing finances that must be met. What I am saying is that your presence is as precious as your money. So yes send your money….but if God is calling you to come and show Christ’s love to us – do not hesitate – your presence will never be forgotten and your visit will mean the world to us.

P.S. I wrote this in my journal on Nov 11th. On the 13th we found out that Nigeria is changing the regulations on Tourist Visas. They are going to start requiring all visitors go to D.C. to be fingerprinted prior to approval of a Nigerian tourist Visa. This would deter most teams from coming to serve with us so we need your prayers! Please pray that this new regulation does not last or they come up with a more efficient way for visitors to have their fingerprints captured.

Watch Live Oak Christian Church service were Beebe Team shares their short term mission experiences in Nigeria.Screen Shot 2017-11-15 at 6.10.36 PM

 

 

Mission Trip to Africa

Posted: September 28, 2017 by Patrice Miles in Miles In Missions, Mission Trip, Nigeria, Patrice Miles, SIM, Volunteers

13528906_1020650084716400_2984030722363838612_nMission trip to Africa! If you love children then we need you! Our agency SIM puts on a Spiritual Life Conference every year for all the missionaries living in Nigeria. It is a time for us all to come together to be renewed and have our cups filled by great speakers and quite time.

We need you to come and lead our missionary kids Pre K-5th grade program.  You will work alongside two senior girls from Christian Academy of Louisville to develop and facilitate a children’s program. We are expecting 10-15 children so 3-5 workers would be wonderful. We already have 2 so we only need you!  You can sign up individually or bring your family, kids, friends, church group, anyone is welcome to come.

SIM will pay for your food and accommodations at our retreat center in Miango. You will also get to see the city of Jos and several of the ministries located there before heading to Miango.

Screen Shot 2015-08-13 at 5.59.54 PMMission Trip details!!
SIM Spiritual Life Conference Dec 31st-Jan 7th.
1. Leave USA on Dec 28th arrive Abuja, Nigeria Dec 29th
2. Travel to JOS Dec 30th (4hr drive)
3. Visit ministries in Jos Dec 31st, Jan 1 & 2.
4. Head to Miango to set up for conference on the 3rd (Website for Miango http://mrhmiango.com/)
5. Conference 3rd-7th
    Pre K ages 3-5 (4-5 children)
    K-5 (10-12 children)
6. All retreat accomodations and food along with in country travel is covered by SIM. Your anticipated expenses are listed below;
    Airfare estimated $1700 per person.
    Jos accommodation and feeding estimate $100 per person.
    VISA estimated $150 per person.

 Please pray about this as we need you…yes you, reading this right now. Email me with any questions you have. Patrice.miles@sim.org

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Spiritual Life Conference 2017