Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Crazy Busy

Things have been crazy busy here lately... we are trying to help flood victims, while doing all of our normal ministries and getting things ready for our Kids Camp this weekend. In the midst of this a wonderful skateboarding team from the US and Canada came to help us. The YWAM school that sent them is in Davos, Switzerland, but none of them are actually from there :) I haven't got a pic of all of them together, but will remedy that soon.

There is a lot of aid coming in for the floods, but as far as we can see,  not a lot of it has actually got to those most in need :( So, we decided that the only way to do it was to go directly to the people and buy them the things that they need the most. Ljilja went last week to one really hard hit area. She did all the work on finding out what they needed, ordering it or taking the people to the shop to order it, and then on Monday most of it was delivered. We took two of the team - Brett and Andrew - to help with the putting together and carrying etc... There were cupboards, flooring, beds, kitchens, etc all being ordered and brought.

Here they are putting a bed together for Katica:
And here she is with Ljilja: she was so happy to have a bed to sleep on after being on a kind of sunbed for the beach since the flood hit over a month ago.
And here they are putting another bed together - it really was great having their help! People bought beds, flooring, cupboards and kitchens... it really was so wonderful being able to help them get the things they need the most.
Here is Sinisa with Darko - some of them are just helped by having someone to talk to... but it is nice that we could provide them a new kitchen (which they will put in once the wall is fixed).
The team has been so helpful in other ways - here is Brandon sharing a testimony at our Sunday meeting. We are meeting in Ihtus at the moment, because the place where we will have our meetings is still being renovated.
And the team has been really helpful with this as well. It turns out that they are all really good construction workers - so have been SO helpful with the work going on in here...
We had another team that came and helped put in the ceiling last month and my colleague Rami and church people have been working hard as well, so it really is coming together!!
They are also helping with English classes (which I forgot to take a picture of!) and we will also take them to the Children's Home and they are helping on our Teenager camp next week... so although things are crazy busy right now, it is really great to have them here with us!!


Victor said...

Really interesting. Three questions or comments.

1) Can you explain how you are in a position to help others but don't seem to need help? Did the flood not hit your areas? So you guys are going to the areas where it hit to help? Were you specifically unaffected?

2) Sometimes I have difficulty inferring the status of women there from your posts. How are they treated by people, by men, by the law? Do they have the same opportunities, agency, freedom to start businesses, respect, liberties, etc.? Tell me how it is both inside and outside the home.

3) HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! I believe you had a birthday recently and I'm sorry I missed it (I was traveling in India and the Philippines. I hope it was a special one. I'm sure you had volunteers and visitors with you as well as your housemates and church family and all the people in whom you have poured love, to show you that you, too, are loved. Be well, sis.

Belinda Chaplin said...

In reply Victor:
1) Banja Luka was hit by floods, about 2000 homes were affected, but none of our homes or buildings were affected. So we were unaffected. We are going to the different areas in Banja Luka that were affected and helping those people.
2)Like anywhere, it depends on who you talk to... There is some discrimination, and definitely males seem to do certain jobs and women others. But it isn't pronounced - there is a lot of freedom to start business, mostly are respected, etc. Of course whenever I go to buy supplies at the building supply shop I make a joke about being a)foreign and b) a women and can they help me... and they think it is funny, but it is true to some extent. Women do most of the cooking, cleaning etc in the home, and men that help are generally looked down upon. We have a woman president right now in the R.S. and she is mostly respected.
3) Thank-you! I see that you now saw my post on my birthday party being in Hungary. It really was a special one. I still haven't had a chance to celebrate with my friends here, but it will happen!! Be well bro!

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