AUGUST 13 – DON’T FORGET VALERIE JEAN VICKNAIR’S BIRTHDAY
First of all I want to wish my lovely wife a very happy birthday. I want the world to know that it is her birthday. I miss her here very much. Somehow we get the job done without her, but believe me when I say “It is now the same”. If you want to fill her cup with Birthday Greetings, her email address is valvicknair
August 13 MEDICAL CAMP SHIKUSA BOYS DETENTION CENTER
As I walked into the boys detention center today I was greeting by a number of boys who waved and yelled “Otieno”. Years ago when I lived in Kisumu the locals decided that I had to have a Kenyan name so they called me “Otieno”. Otieno is one of the most common names in this region of Kenya. Otieno in Kisumu is like “Smith” in the USA.
We have been working with the Boys Detention Center now for 8 years. In that time we have seen the conditions dramatically change here. I am happy to say that Worldcomp has played a major role in the transformation. Eight years ago this place was like a slave labor camp where 500 teenage boys lived their lives in the worst conditions imaginable. The boys were malnourished and most of them were sick with stomach conditions. Their clothing was nothing more than tattered rags and they had no access to education or medical care.
Working with our board president Dr George Matimbai we have helped to make numerous changes here. We had seen to it that a school was built and supplied with books, we have supplied medicine to the dispensary we have bought more than 1000 mattresses, supplied tons of hygiene supplies, built a sport court and supplies sports equipment. But most of all we have seen hundreds of boys give their lives to Jesus and begin to learn about His promises.
While all this is true, it is a big challenge to maintain a dynamic spiritual climate because of “turnover”. Most boys are only here for two or three years and we’ve seen that those who accept Christ and walk with Him passionately get out much sooner than the others. Every few years there is a complete turnover in the prison population and our work has to begin all over again. We thank God that most of the prison staff and the prison director are passionate Christians who diligently keep working for the Lord.
A FEW NEEDS
We have a few needs that I want to share with you. There are several things that have come up that are over and above our budget. The first one involves the circumcisions that we have started to do. The procedure along with the pre-op and post op medications make the cost of each circumcision about $30 per patient. We have already paid for 35 of these procedures but as funds allow we are hoping to see several hundred more in the next few weeks. We need some help on this!
The second thing is reading glasses. The demand for reading glasses is way beyond what we have budgeted for. We can do the exams for nothing but after that we need to purchase the glasses. They are only about $2.00 a pair but we are going to need hundreds of these in the days ahead. Tomorrow we are going to a part of the country called Malava, where there is literally no eye care facilities within 50 miles and we are anticipating hundreds of people asking for glasses. Dr. George came to me this morning to ask me if I thought we should offer glasses owing to the expense and I strongly felt we should take a step of faith and I would let the need be known back home. Please consider helping us with a donation for these two needs. If you would like to give you may do so in two ways: give online at www.worldcompkenya.com/ways-to-help or mail your contribution to Worldcomp Kenya 7758 Earl Ave NW, Seattle, WA 98117
We finished our day at Shikusa with a time of sharing with the boys. I had a chance to give them my testimony and encourage them to accept the Lord. One of our team, a woman named Rispah, gave them a wonderful talk on avoiding AIDS and she combined it with a great testimony for the Lord. We have seen about 150 of the boys plus a number of staff members and their families. I am praising God that he remembers the prisoner, especially since I began my life with the Lord in a prison cell 45 years ago.
Just as we were all packed to leave the same reporter that showed up yesterday in Ibinzo showed up with a camera crew to film what we were doing. We told them that we were all finished but they talked the team into setting up a mock scene of us ministering to the boys. Several of the boys shared words of appreciation for the ministry of Worldcomp. It was actually quite sweet. I don’t know what will come of all the reporting, but I pray that the Lord will somehow use it for His purposes.
Sorry my email is so long but thank you so much for sharing this adventure with us.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY VALERIE