Last week over 250 people filled a banquet hall in Germantown, Tennessee, to show support for and gain more knowledge of The Forsaken Children. Corporate sponsorships, individual donations, and proceeds from a fantastic art auction resulted in an initial $16,000 in one-time funds raised and $215 in monthly support pledged (Be on the lookout for the final outcome in October!). But much more importantly, new people were exposed to the needs of the street children in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
Supporters of the ministry hosted tables, which they filled with friends, family, and co-workers unfamiliar with the ministry. As we ate, listened to a speaker who has been to the TFC's partner project, Onesimus, and watched an incredible video, these newcomers began to understand the reality of the plight of the children TFC ministers to.
It's fairly easy to close our hearts off to reports of famine, neglect, and abuse happening on the other side of the world. It's a little harder, but not too hard, to ignore the still pictures of elementary school age children (and younger) covered with dirt, sleeping on a trash-laden street, skin and bones from lack of nutrition. But it's much harder to ignore the video footage of these same children - now clean, healthy looking, eyes smiling with joy, all because of the tangible needs TFC provides and the spiritual salve Jesus has applied to these children's souls through TFC.
As I sat and watched the video at the banquet, I thought, "This is a worthy cause." The success stories of the children prove that giving to the ministry results in lives forever changed. The hope - hope for a better life, hope for education, hope in a Living God - on the faces of the children is priceless.
My prayer in the wake of the banquet is that those who were hearing about TFC for the first time were stirred as well. I pray they continue to think about the ministry and come to a point where they understand these children are worth their donation.
Please take a few moments and view the banquet video yourself.