In June of 2008, I had the outgoing and incoming 5th/6th grade classes at Grace Baptist join to throw a dart at a large map of Africa to allow God to choose where we should focus our orphan efforts. The dart landed on Geita, the gold capital of Africa. An extended websearch found three projects to work with:
PROJECT A: www.NeemaHouse.org NEEMA HOUSE, A NEW ORPHANAGE FOR INFANTS IN GEITA, TANZANIA, located 50 miles south of Lake Victoria in northern Tanzania. The primary sponsor is a church in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, which I visited in 2009. Primary missionaries are Calvin and Alicia Groen and their three young girls, Katelyn, Sadie, and Hailey. They are veteran missionaries, having worked in Mwanza, Tanzania. I visited them in Murfreesboro in 2009 and 2010. After several years of red tape, they have started building the orphanage this year. I gave Calvin a Hydromission auger to hand drill wells on the property, but shallow bedrock has prevented this. The Groens stayed at the Kroppage (see Project B) residence nearby and had planned to drill a well at the satellite site there.
PROJECT B: www.kroppach.net ALLIANZ MISSION
Daniel and Stephanie Kroppach and their three young girls were missionaries in Geita several years before the Groens arrived from Mwanza. Allianz is a German missions organization, with most of their literature in that language. They shared a compound with African Inland Mission, but Allianz had to call Daniel home late last year due to unspecified difficulties with AIM. Daniel and Stephanie had worked with women’s groups in Geita to teach scripture and help them start businesses. Daniel taught men and boys at the compound farming, machining, and pump repair. I had hoped Daniel would dig the auger well at the satellite site (Geita, Tanzania Project 2 Satellite Report), as he was very good at such projects. He and several Geita youth hand dug a 68 foot well near his house on the compound, but netted very little water. The satellite report, generated later, confirmed the dry spot. I keep in touch with the Daniel, now living in Germany, as he still has a heart for the Geita people.
PROJECT C: Moyo Wa Huruma Orphanage Centre
Bishop Dalu of the Catholic Diocese of Geita has been very friendly and open in allowing Sister Adalbera Mukure, Director of the orphanage, to work with me. Her initial email praised my Bible teaching to the children of Grace Baptist, and my love for the Lord. She now has 86 children in the orphanage, which is supported primarily by local people. She had some serious medical problems last year, but is now continuing to lead the orphanage. I have assisted her by sending money to install a hand pump for the children to use for clothes washing and for the garden. Right after the pump was installed by a local merchant, the orphanage’s powered pump failed, so it became their only source of water. I recently sent Driptape and “Farming God’s Way” training for them to use in their gardens to help conserve scarce water.
PROJECT A: INTERNATIONAL GOSPEL MISSION (formerly INDEPENDENT GOSPEL MISSION) www.igmonline.org
I met Rex Furman of IGM through Lancaster, Ca. church contacts. He introduced me to Wilson Maungo, who starts churches in Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi. Wilson was working to have a bore hole digger, sent from Lancaster churches, to be transported 180 miles north to desolate Lodwar, to dig a well for a small church in Lodwar. Due to communication difficulties, coordinates for the well were not available, so I had a scan of Lodwar (population 100,000) made. Six sites were identified in the Lodwar, Kenya Project 4 Report. After some time, it was determined that the small church was 4 miles north of Lodwar, and another satellite scan was made (Water Search for Lodwar, Kenya). This time, 4 more sites were identified, but none was on the Nakwamekwi School compound. Rob Hallen, his wife, Cindy and four girls from their Idaho church traveled to Lodwar to assist in digging the well. I helped finance this effort (as did an old friend from Ga Tech), which was unsuccessful- the equipment broke down and was unable to drill through the rock they encountered. However, much relief food was given, with a strong witness for Jesus. When Rob returned home, he contracted with a Christian well digger from a Turkana refugee camp to try again. They were able to strike water at about 60 feet, and temporarily install a hand pump.
PROJECT B: CHRISTIAN MISSIONARY FELLOWSHIP INTERNATIONAL (CMFi) TURKANA PROJECT
Gene Morden, a contact I had made through Healing Hands International of Nashville, Tn., had some of his workers check the well installation at Nakwamekwi. Gene also confirmed 4 of the 6 satellite sites in Lodwar as having wells nearby. CMFi has dug 100 wells to the south and east of Lodwar, with irrigation projects for local farmers and over 1000 baptized in 2011. I sent special driptape for trials by local Lodwar farmers to Gene recently. All of Gene’s wells follow a dry riverbed and use a locally made augers, similar to the Hydromission auger, but larger. Gene is using expensive but durable Grunfos in-ground pumps; I have suggested conventional above- ground jet pumps to reduce cost, and will be working with his Kenyan engineer on this.
GEOLOGICAL SURVEY DEPARTMENT, MALAWI
Two satellite reports were run in central Malawi for Hendrix Kaonga, Regional Geologist of the Geological Survey Department after he agreed to find villages near his workplace which needed clean water sources. Five sites were identified in both A and B reports by Devin Neal of Bowling Green State University. Hendrix has located a portable drilling machine to bore test holes at some of the sites, a project that was delayed by rains. Hendrix reported in January 2013 that drilling will now take place in March 2013. I have offered to fund the drilling, but so far the work is being done by the Geological Survey. This may be the best confirmation of the remote imaging process to find shallow water.
ADVOCATES FOR AFRICA’S CHILDREN
Heidi Lum, a friend of my college roommate, Bob Schleicher, is the founder and president of this small NGO. I became a board member of AFAC in 2012. 21% of the population of Swaziland are orphaned children under the age of 15- the result of the highest HIV rate in the world and extreme poverty. Life expectancy in Swaziland is 45. We help orphans in four locations by helping local women to raise chickens and improved gardens, thereby enabling them to take in orphans. The work is led by a local church pastor’s network. A satellite search was run by Devin Neal centered around Mgambeni, where 4 sites were identified. Heidi leads groups from US churches two or three times a year. I hope to learn about the sites from photos taken, then perhaps travel there in 2013 to dig test wells. I have also initiated an introduction of Sawyer filters for individual home use through contacts in Pretoria, South Africa. These small filters can clean up to 1 million gallons of water!
HEALING HANDS INTERNATIONAL, NASHVILLE, TN
I learned of Healing Hands from Calvin Groen during my USA tour in April-June, 2010. I dropped in unannounced to their Nashville headquarters and was graciously received by Chris Gingles, VP. His immediate need was for more expertise in water, and asked me to look for an inexpensive contamination sensor. I later found Monica Weber of Yale University, who is working on such a device, and passed it on to Chris. He also asked for help finding water for the Smelzer Clinic in Monduli, Tanzania. I contacted Dr. Robert Vincent, and he had Kenny Brown do the satellite search (Smelzer Clinic Monduli, Tanzania). One of the two sites found were on the clinic’s property, but it still has not been tested due to communication problems with the field.
EL WAK, KENYA
HEALING HANDS INTERNATIONAL, NASHVILLE, TN.
This satellite search was by mistake. Chris Gingles gave the wrong coordinates initially for the Smelzer Clinic which was hundreds of miles to the north. Dr Vincent and Kenny Brown found some very interesting geological formations, which potentially contain huge caverns of water, in that hostile desert. El Wak is the nearest city, which borders Somalia. It is in a drought stricken area, so I have been looking for an organization which might be interested in our findings. It is in one of the most dangerous places on earth, so I do not plan to visit there, unless invited.
ISINON and OLOCHURA, KENYA
AFRICA HOPE/ NEW MISSION SYSTEMS INTERNATIONAL.
This contact, from Gene Morden and Jon Keshe, is for Maasai villages with missionaries Tim and Elizabeth Harrison. The need is for well locations. Since these sites are near another well done by Rob Hallen, I sent his hydrology/dig report to Jon to perhaps use the same local hydrologist and well digger. I met Devin Neal in Studio City, Ca, after I learned he moved from Ohio to take a course on teaching English in Thailand. Although he does not have the computer program he used at BGSU (ER Mapper), he agreed to try to make a similar scan of this area.
HEALING HANDS INTERNATIONAL, CHRIS GINGLES
Chris emailed 3 new sites, two for HHI property, one for KCITI on 12/25/12. These sites will be scanned by Devin Neal after item 7.