You’re His New Beginning!

New Beginnings School For The Deaf: A Family’s Prayer Answered

Like all parents, Huy’s mom and dad were overjoyed at his birth. They were proud! They beamed! Truly, Huy was the “star of the show” so far as his parents, grandparents and village neighbors were concerned.

However, after 7 months, Huy’s parents began to suspect that something was wrong. And even though Danang was a two hour plus bus ride from their village home, they took Huy to a Danang Hospital for examination. There, to their surprise and dismay, doctors reported that Huy was deaf.

The life of rural Vietnam’s, special needs children can be hard. Nowhere is this better seen than in the lives of rural-born deaf children. In Huy’s village, there resided no one who could teach him or his parents to sign. Huy’s mom and dad couldn’t send him to “the big city” where deaf services were available. As a result, from age one, when Huy’s diagnosis was confirmed by a second doctor, until he was 11 years old, Huy never attended school, didn’t learn to read, and never learned even basic math. He didn’t communicate with anyone outside his immediate family – and even with his mom and dad, he didn’t communicate well.

When Huy’s dad learned of New Beginnings School for the Deaf recently, he immediately came to the school and asked Teacher Mai if Huy could attend. In fact, he pleaded with her. So even though New Beginnings’s school year has already begun, Huy was admitted.

Huy’s just getting started and must catch up. Please pray for him (and a second new child) as they begin to learn Vietnamese sign language, reading, math and character development. Thank you!

New Beginnings now teaches 12 children each day.  The school depends on your prayers and your investment, to pay the bills.  Can you invest $50, $100 or $250 in one of these 12 deaf children today? Please do so and Donate Here.

Or mail your support to Orphan Voice, P.O. Box 910410, Lexington, Kentucky 40591. Thank you!

Keeping HER Family Together

“Would my girls be better off if they lived at the local orphanage?” So Cuc, a hard-working but struggling mother, thought many times over the years.

Cuc loved her daughters, Ha and Thu. If they lived at the orphanage, she would miss them but maybe she could visit from time to time and bring them their favorite food. She had heard good things about the orphanage. It was supported by rich foreigners. Last year, due to really hard times, that “orphanage thought” passed through her mind more often than usual – and it always made her sad.

Cuc’s husband is disabled, does not work and therefore does not help pay the bills. Cuc herself is uneducated, with little by way of marketable skills. Truly their lives have been hard.

Ha and Thu attend school but have not had the benefit of the all-important tutors (without tutoring, which is built into the Vietnamese educational system, students may not proceed beyond 8th grade). Their grades were therefore poor. The girls never knew a dentist.

A Meager Income

Before entering Orphan Voice’s Keeping Families Together program, Cuc bought fruit, bread, and other food from a local store and walked the city streets hawking the food. Her inventory was what she could carry. The work was hard and hot. She sometimes sold her food; sometimes not. Earnings were meager.

Over time, she convinced a friend to allow her to set up a small food stand in front of her home. The space was small – only 4 feet by 3 feet – but it allowed Cuc to cook simple dishes and sell to passersby. Her income increased to 30,000 – 50,000 VND per day ($1.30 – $2.20).

That amount put food on the table – always enough rice, but the family still depended on the charity of others. Home repairs were left undone. Neighbors bought the girls’ textbooks and school supplies and when sickness came, doctor’s visits were unknown.

A Partnership Bringing Hope

After village social services recommended Cuc and her husband to Orphan Voice’s Keeping Families Together program and they were accepted, Orphan Voice staff began to meet with the couple and children regularly. A local pastor joined the Orphan Voice team to offer spiritual guidance. Friendships were formed; mentoring began.

Experienced mentors counseled Cuc and her husband on the qualities of a good and Godly marriage. They heard for the first time the importance of valuing one another. They also learned positive ways to discipline the girls and the importance of their girls having a good self-image. The couple learned of family budgeting for the first time.

When Orphan Voice staff and Cuc discussed how to create more income for the family, everyone agreed that she could expand her food business if she had better tools. To that end, Orphan Voice worked with Cuc to negotiate more space from her neighbor to set up an outdoor restaurant.

The KFT program purchased new tables and chairs so that Cuc could serve more customers. KFT also purchased new bowls, cooking utensils and a “cooking cabinet” which allowed Cuc to keep all her ingredients together. The new tools replaced the badly worn (and bad looking) ones; customers noticed the difference.

Return On Investment

Cuc’s business has grown! The new tables and chairs are welcoming to people as they walk by, and more and more stop for a bite to eat. The “cooking cabinet” gives the food stall a more professional look and, of course, allows Cuc to organize food ingredients and prepare dishes more quickly and easily. She is experiencing something which has not troubled her before: having more sales and income!

Cuc now makes from 150,000 to 200,000 VND per day ($6.60 – $8.80)!  And the increased income has translated into practical help for her family!  The girls have tutors for the first time and their grades have improved. In addition to rice and vegetables, the family eats fish and meat during the week. They’ve been able to repair their old motorbike.  Even home repairs are foreseeable.

The family is overjoyed! Gone forever is the thought that the girls would be better off in an orphanage!

Why Keeping Families Together Is Needed

Most children in Vietnamese government orphanages have at least one parent. Sometimes they have two. And for every child in state care, other desperate families press orphanage officials to “take” their children too. Why would parents do that? Perhaps you can guess from Cuc’s story.

Poverty, of course, is the main reason. Countryside families, who have a hard time feeding their children, despair. Their religion is about duty and it gives little hope. For some moms, like Cuc, placing their child in an orphanage seems like a “step-up” in that their son or daughter will receive good food and go to school.

But caregivers in even the best orphanages know that at night – when the day’s activities are over and before falling off to sleep – children long for their parents. KFT allows them to be home!

Your Opportunity To Protect Children In Vietnam And Southeast Asia

Our 2018-2019 KFT plans are to reach 1,000 needy children and their moms and dads in Vietnam, Thailand, Nepal, and Laos. Why these countries? Because they have one thing in common: children living in orphanages who should not be there because they have one or two parents.

This 18-month KFT program of mentoring, training and income generation assistance will cost $100,000.

While we are praying and planning for this expansion, Orphan Voice continues its daily Vietnamese ministry to orphans, special needs children, and children at risk for abuse or trafficking in its established 10 programs. The children and families in these programs are protected and blessed only because of you – our Orphan Voice partners.

Can you give generously today to impact Vietnam and Southeast Asia’s “least of these”? To do so make your gift online HERE.

A Dream Come True

School: Her Dream Come True

Nuong, from a poverty-stricken mountain family, was born deaf and her life has been hard. Her mom, fearing that men would molest her, kept the 23 year old close by her side during her childhood. Before this year, Nuong had only spent one night away from home.

As a result, Nuong has spent most of her life looking after the family’s cow and doing other household chores. On a normal day, she walks the cow to pasture – making sure that it doesn’t get into anyone’s crops – and cuts grass for it to eat when pasture is available. In a sense, the family cow became her best friend.

Night and day! That’s the difference when comparing Nuong’s old life to her life now! Check it out. The story of her “new beginning” will bless you.

I Know The Plans That I Have For You

Orphan Voice partners provide the ministry of New Beginnings School for the Deaf.  You employ two love-filled teachers to minister to Luong and the other students five day each week.

New Beginnings School for the Deaf is our most expensive program, per child.  For two students, we need to supplement their lunch and transportation. Nuong is one of those two students.

Can you sow generously into the lives of these 10 students?  Please do. The “trajectory change” for these children is astronomical because of New Beginnings.

To help us keep it going and to bless “the least of these,” donate HERE.

Hope Therapy Center Is Open!

“Joshua” (fictitious name) is a young boy who can’t walk. Before Hope Therapy Center opened, he didn’t receive therapy. Why? Because there was no government or private therapy center within drivable distance from his house. And his parents couldn’t afford to send him to a large city where more help is available.

As a result, before Hope Therapy Center, Joshua’s day looked like this. Each morning, his parents put him in a crib on the concrete porch along one side of their house. He stayed in the crib alone all morning until his grandfather arrived at noon to give him some porridge. In the afternoon, “Joshua” was again alone until his parents returned from work around 5:00.

The concrete floor and a water hose made for easy cleanup where “Joshua” used the bathroom during the day.

But “Joshua’s life has changed because of Orphan Voice partners. He now has a place to receive therapy. A love-filled therapist works to alleviate the problem in his leg that keeps him from walking. It’s life-changing for him.

Hope Therapy Center operates ONLY because of you.  Can you help us by sowing as generously as you can into this important outreach?  To do so, donate HERE.

Hope Therapy Center After Renovation

Cleft Lip Surgery: Changed Lives

In rural Vietnam and in the Highlands, some children may not have their cleft lip/palate repaired. There are many reasons which force parents this way: 1) being unable to pay the hospital bill or the related travel and food expenses; 2) being unaware of available help; 3) lack of hope among parents that things can be better; and even 4) counsel from village elders to leave “fate alone” (if fate determined that the baby be born that way, don’t interfere with it).

But cleft lip and palate repair saves a child from mockery from other children as he/she grows up. In the case of cleft palate repair, it gives the child the chance to speak clearly. The surgery can, of course, be a life saving procedure and, some who need it but don’t get it, die.

For these reasons and more, Orphan Voice provides help for families and children who cannot obtain the needed repair on their own.

Check out our latest case by clicking on the button below. And please help us do more. The total cost is running about $800. Can you be the reason that another child get his/her surgery? Every gift helps. To bless “the least of these” today, donate HERE.

Full Circle

Orphan Voice is excited about June 6 – 17, 2019! That’s the time A Helping Hand adoptees and their families (who the Brewers helped with their adoptions) will visit Vietnam to serve “the least of these.” In fact, we may have two teams!

So if you’re an A Helping Hand family looking for a ministry experience in 2019, you’ve found it! Or if you’re one of those beautiful girls, now is your time. Let’s make it full circle!

We’ve made preparations.

Team activities will include: 1) painting murals; 2) sports; 3) painting classrooms; 4) games and crafts; and more. For a 12-14 day ministry experience (including travel days), one person’s cost for food and hotel will be roughly $500 (plus the air ticket which we are working on). We’ll reserve hotel rooms, provide translators and help at meal time. With a year’s notice, the money can be raised!

Email don.secrest@orphanvoice.org to let us know, with no obligation, that you’re interested.  You can let us know of your interest, but later drop off the list if need be. God bless!

New Beginnings School for the Deaf Graduation

At the beginning of July, we took the 10 students from the New Beginnings School for the Deaf to ‘Happy Heart’, cafe here in Danang, that provides training to deaf people, to work in their cafe. This is where we celebrated the end of the school year, with these students and their amazing teachers. The children loved coming here, as they see how a deaf person can get a great job, without letting their circumstances stop them. Certificates were awarded for the 3 children completing grade 1, and the 7 children completing grade 3, which is an amazing achievement for them all. We feel blessed that they are learning in a safe and positive environment, so thank you to the wonderful people who support the school.

Promise House Graduation

Last week, we held an end of the school year celebration for the children from the Promise House. This was an evening to acknowledge their hard work and commitment to their studies, as well as to thank their house mothers for their mentorship and support for their schooling. Every child received an award, specific to their achievements, as well as a small gift.

We are so proud of the results and goals they have individually achieved. Education is such a powerful thing, and we feel blessed that thanks to your support, these children are able to gain a great education here in Danang.

Gifts for the Children of Tam Ky

Last week, 130 of the children from poorer families in the Tam Ky region of Quang Nam province, spent their day on a field trip to Danang. The children included in this day, are determined by the Government, who then pass on the information to us. This was a special day for them, as they visited the Museum, as well as participating in other activities. Orphan Voice was able to support these children, by providing each child with notebooks and a pen, as a small gift for their studies.

Laying Up Grass

Nuong And Her Friend

Laying Up Grass

Nuong, from a poverty-stricken mountain family, was born deaf; her life has been hard. Her mom, fearing that men would molest her, kept the 23 year old close by her side from her childhood days. Before this year, Nuong had only spent one night away from home.

Nuong’s mentally ill dad, for different reasons, also forbade his daughter from leaving the house. The “stay at home” rule was iron-clad.

As a result, Nuong has spent most of her life looking after the family’s two cows and doing other household chores. On a normal day, she walked the cows to pasture – making sure that they didn’t get into anyone’s crops – and cut grass for them to eat when pasture was not available. In a sense, the family cows became her best friends.

A few weeks ago, Nuong’s mom travelled to a Phu Ninh village bank to borrow money. While there, she met an Orphan Voice staff person and told her about Nuong. The staff person referred the family to New Beginnings School for the Deaf.

When Nuong learned about the school, her heart leapt. She sensed that this was her path to happiness. Thinking ahead and to remove reasons for her dad to say “no” to New Beginnings, she cut six large bags of grass to “do the cows” for a few days (the bags are about 3 ft. tall and 1.5 feet in diameter). She didn’t want anything to stand in her way!

Today Nuong is in school! Because her village home is over an hour away by motorbike, she lives with an Orphan Voice worker during the week. The Orphan Voice worker takes Nuong to New Beginnings each day.

If ever a child gained a “new beginning,” Nuong has!

You can be sure that your gift to Orphan Voice is changing lives. Every gift matters, and it matters eternally. Bless “the least of these” today! To do so, donate HERE.

Nuong at New Beginnings School for the Deaf, With Her Teacher, Hanh.

You can be sure that your gift to Orphan Voice is changing lives. Every gift matters, and it matters eternally. Bless “the least of these” today! To do so, donate HERE.

Thanks to James and Betty Robison and Life Outreach International for this van! It will transport special needs children to Hope Therapy Center. Without it, most of them wouldn’t receive therapy because they live too far away.

Promise House Group Home children love it too – as you can see!

Full Circle: From An Orphanage To An Orphanage

When our family moved to Vietnam ten years ago, this thought came to me (Tony): “Later some of the girls will come on a Friendship Team (the A Helping Hand girls).”

When I told Cindy about it, we knew that part of our job was to make preparations for the “A Helping Hand girls.”

All Hands On Deck! If you’re an A Helping Hand family looking for a family ministry experience in 2019, you’ve found it! Or if you’re one of those beautiful girls who we knew when you were young, now is your time. Let’s make it full circle. From an orphanage to an orphanage! Come, bless “the least of these,” and experience great things in your God.

We’ve made preparations.

We’re planning for June 2019. Activities include: 1) painting murals; 2) conducting a sports camp; 3) painting classrooms; 4) games and crafts with Promise House children; and 5) possibly medical and dental outreaches. For a 12-14 day ministry experience (including travel days), one person’s cost for food and hotel will be roughly $500 (plus the air ticket). We’ll make all the arrangements and have plenty of translators. With a year’s notice, the money can be raised!

Contact don.secrest@orphanvoice.org to let us know that you’re interested.

Time and Eternity

Hope Therapy Center

The Need

Hieu is six and he’s usually sick with lung inflammation and coughing. He can’t crawl or turn over. He’s never had therapeutic help and mostly just lies on his mat all day. His elderly grandmother looks after him during the day while his parents work.

The Answer

Occupational Therapist, Caroline Mrowiec, prayerfully interviewed Hieu and his family last week. The good news is that Hieu is accepted into Hope Therapy Center’s program! He’ll start this month. Please pray for him!

Caroline will be ministering to other children at Hope Therapy Center. Some will be like Hieu and others will have less severe needs. 

To support Orphan Voice’s newest outreach to special needs children, sow your gift HERE.

A Dream

When the Brewer family moved to Vietnam ten years ago, this thought came to me (Tony): “Later some of the girls will come on a Friendship Team (the A Helping Hand girls). We’ll get ready for them.”

All Hands On Deck! If you’re an A Helping Hand family looking for a family ministry experience in 2019, you’ve found it! Or if you’re one of those beautiful Chinese girls that we knew when you were young, now is your time. Come, bless “the least of these,” and experience great things.  Let’s do it. We’ve made preparations.

Email Don Secrest to learn more: don.secrest@orphanvoice.org

Orphanages In Our Lives

Cindy and I lived in the Washington, D.C. area in 1992, and I had just “hung out a shingle” to practice law when a young couple came to my office with a question: “Will you help us adopt a child from China?”

Over the next sixteen years, answering that question not only led to that couple adding to their family, but also Cindy and I adopting five beautiful daughters. It also gave us the privilege of helping over 1,000 couples give homes to needy children who formerly lived in developing country orphanages. After visiting a few of those orphanages early on, we determined to empty as many of them as we could.

Answering that question eventually led to the founding of Orphan Voice and our move to Asia.

With that background, when Cindy and I moved to Vietnam, our purpose in coming was a fuzzy idea of “orphan care.”  So, when Vietnamese officials asked us to operate a struggling orphanage, we took on the job. Promise House Group Home still operates for selected children – with your help.

But our thinking about orphan care best practices changed over time. Gradually, it became clear that even a “good orphanage,” except in certain cases, wasn’t good at all. Our earlier idea to empty orphanages in developing countries had been the right one!

With expertise provided by Orphan’s Promise in Virginia Beach, Virginia, we determined to help families in crisis before they felt pressured to turn to an orphanage for help. Thus, our Keeping Families Together (KFT) program was born.

Meet Vinh’s Family

Vinh and his wife, Hanh, always fought. Vinh cut his wife off emotionally, and when he did talk to her, it was usually in anger. Chronically sick and unable to hold a regular job, Vinh couldn’t earn the money that his family needed. That added anger and frustration to both their lives.

The children suffered too. They were sometimes hungry. Their oldest son dropped out of school. The girls did poorly in school and did not have tutors (the normal practice), because the family could not afford tutors.  At one point, Vinh and Hanh decided to place their daughters in an orphanage.

But village leaders knew of Orphan Voice’s Keeping Families Together program and recommended the family to it. With some reluctance, Vinh and Hanh applied and were accepted.

Orphan Voice Christian workers began to visit, counsel and encourage Vinh and Hanh. They got to know the couple well and Vinh and Hanh shared their deepest feelings. Over several months, the workers shared practical ways for Vinh and Hanh to love one another, to develop a better marriage and to become better parents.

KFT paid for Vinh to go to the hospital. While still not 100%, he’s better today. KFT also helped Vinh and Hanh make more money. The couple knew how to raise chickens, geese and pigs. Building on those skills, the KFT program purchased a pregnant “seed-sow” as well as “seed-ducks and chickens.”  Vinh and Hanh were faithful in their care for the animals and soon pigs, chickens and ducks were everywhere!  The family ate some, sold some for cash, but still the numbers grew.

With a KFT-provided electric bicycle, Vinh’s 17-year-old son could reach a swampy area several kilometers away and collect snails to sell. In this way, he made 250,000 Vietnam dong ($11) per day for the family – an unheard of amount. In short, the family has prospered as never before.

Through the ministry of Orphan Voice Vinh, Hanh and their children’s lives have changed. Vinh and Hanh smile and laugh more often. Their children are happier. The girls have tutors. Food is always on the table.

Best of all? The idea of sending their two beautiful daughters to an orphanage is gone forever!

Orphan Voice reaches families like Vinh and Hanh’s only because of you. Your gift changes lives. Will you help us today? To sow love and hope into the lives of needy families, donate HERE.

Binh’s Miracle

From health as an infant, to near death as a nine-year-old, and back to health again through love and therapy, Binh has experienced a miracle. Watch and rejoice with him!

Special needs children are special. Help us minister to them today by investing in their lives HERE.

Answer to Nuong’s Request

New Beginnings School for the Deaf serves deaf children in the Vietnamese countryside who would not otherwise attend school. So instead of growing up unable to sign, read, or compute basic math, New Beginnings children learn skills to enable them to function in life. It’s truly their “new beginning.”

Nuong is our most recently admitted student. Unusually, she’s older than the others. In fact, she’s in her 20s. How did she come to attend?

We’ll tell you in our next newsletter in an article called: “Laying Up Grass.”  You won’t want to miss it!  For now, though…

Intense desire drove her!  In short, Noung  implored the teacher to be allowed to attend. In the face of such importunity, she was admitted.

New Beginnings School for the Deaf is a small school, in a small place, serving a small group of children.  In the world’s estimation, it holds out small expectations. But for 10 deaf children, New Beginnings is the most important place in the world. For them, it unlocks a future that is good and exciting.

“I know the plans that I have for you, says the Lord, plans for good and not for evil to give you a future and a hope.”

These guys are worth it!  There’s room for you to help change their lives.  To sow your investment today, donate HERE.


Hope Therapy Center

She’s here and we’re excited! Caroline Mrowiec, lead therapist for Orphan Voice’s soon-to-open Hope Therapy Center, arrived in Danang February 17th. She’s anxious to get started.

Caroline comes to us from Illinois by way of Texas. She’s a licensed occupational therapist who will minister to ‘the least of these’ in Dien Ban District for two years. A committed Christian, Caroline loves children and is eager to put her training and skills into practice to change lives.

While she’s purchasing therapy equipment, learning to ride a motorbike in Danang’s crazy traffic, and absorbing the sites and sounds of Danang, construction workers are busy renovating the Hope Therapy Center building.

Hope Therapy Center is not fully funded. Can you help us finish renovations so that we can begin to receive children? Hope’s doors open April 1st. To invest your support, donate HERE.

Special Needs Children Therapy Is Needed

Our burden for countryside special needs children is great, because first, without our intervention, they won’t get better, and second, a little therapy and encouragement make a big difference.

Watch Truc walk on her own (click above). There was a time in her life when she couldn’t walk. It is for children like Truc that Caroline Mroweic came to Vietnam.

And you have a part to play.  To change a life today, donate HERE.

“I Am Loved!”

Orphan Voice staff member, Daisy Tran, recently hosted anti-trafficking seminars for 1900 elementary and junior-high school children. City and District educators prize Orphan Voice’s More Precious Than Gold and Good-Touch, Bad-Touch seminars. Why? Because it is a powerful tool to help them reach their goals. They intend to stop child trafficking in Danang. We are proud to work with them in doing so.

Hear this child’s testimony after hearing Daisy: “I am loved, I am valuable and I am more precious than gold!”

And so she is!  Through these seminars God is helping the young understand how to protect themselves. He is also planting into their hearts that “they are more precious than gold.”  One day, they will hear the name of Jesus – about His love for them – and they will understand fully why they are “more precious than gold.”

Your gifts, which propel our anti-trafficking seminars forward then, are protective of the children and they also act as a pre-evangelism tool – to go before the face of the Lord prepare His way. You’re doing a lot!

So that more children to know that they are “more precious than gold,” donate HERE.

Promise House Testimonies

“Family” was the counseling focus for Promise House children during 2017. Recently, several children wrote their thoughts about family. A child whose rural orphanage closed and who recently came to Promise House wrote:

“Promise House is a place for poor children and orphans. I’m lucky to be here. We’re all different ages and difficult circumstances brought us here, but we all look to a bright future. We tell each other that this is the warmest, happiest family in the world!

Some school mates have made fun of us because we are orphans, but I don’t feel ashamed or hurt because we have mothers. Our mothers are not our birthmothers but they teach us and help us. Sometimes I dream that they are my real mother. I also have 20 brothers and sisters who love, care and help me. I used to think that I was an unlucky girl, but when I came here, that thought disappeared.”

Your ministry to children through Orphan Voice’s various orphan outreaches changes lives! You’re the key! To enable us to reach more of “the least of these,” sow your support HERE.

Children Celebrate Their “Moms” On International Women’s Day

Promise House children expressed love for their “mothers” on International Women’s Day.  Some of the older girls cooked a special meal to celebrate (above) and all wrote a letter their “moms.”

Partial Translation: “We would like to send our mothers a message today.

These are sincere words which we would like to send to you. You play a very important role in our growth. You always remind us of many daily things from washing to learning. You remind us of little things too. You are always there to share happiness and sorrow with us.

We know that you love us like your own children. You always encourage, comfort and love us. Even though we are not your own children we consider you to be our real mothers. We love you!”

To reach ‘the least of these’ through Orphan Voice’s orphan outreaches, donate HERE.

They Came, They Saw, They Loved

Christ’s Love to the Hurting

Hope For The Hurting

Central Vietnam was recently inundated with rain and flooding. Minority people in the Highlands experienced the greatest loss and suffering. The death toll ran to hundreds.

An elderly man walked in the pouring rain looking for shelter. Coming upon a home, he asked to come in. The young husband, his pregnant wife and their young daughter welcomed him. After a meal, they all took their normal afternoon nap. It was a nap from which the elderly man and pregnant mother did not awake.

While they slept, the mountainside gave way and tons of mud covered the house.

A couple of hours later, a neighbor saw smoke rising from the site where the couple’s home had been. He yelled an alarm and neighbors gathered to frantically dig. They rescued the badly hurt husband and his daughter, but the elderly man and the pregnant mom had been crushed.

Jesus comes to the suffering when tragedy strikes and pain is great. A loving hand and a loving touch mean a lot.  Orphan Voice staff, in your stead, went to this devastated family and others like them with hope, love, rice, noodles, blankets and other supplies only hours after their loss. Those items seem so paltry in the face of tragedy, but when delivered in the Love of Christ, they make a huge impact.

While we don’t respond to natural disasters like Typhoon Damrey each day, Orphan Voice staff do reach others each day.  Can you help us continue?  To join us and provide for the hurting, sow your support HERE.

Covenant Life Ministries

They Came, They Saw, They Loved

It was a long trip. Pastors Dennis and Deb Smith and the Covenant Life Ministries team flew 18,000 miles to bless the “least of these.”  

It was a quick trip. They did it all, including flying time, in nine days.

It was a blessed trip. Can you imagine how a 4 X 8 foot, beautifully painted, multi-colored mural will brighten the lives of children?  If so, multiply that by six because the CLM team painted six murals. They will hang at Hope Therapy Center and New Beginnings School for the Deaf. Smilies will come!

Before Dennis, Deb, Blake, Josh, Katherine, Joy, Phillip, Cody, Katie, Lauren, Debra, Gary and Sharon came to Vietnam, 308 junior-high students at the Tay Giang Boarding School were cold. With the temperature dropping to freezing, that matters!  To meet their need, the CLM team helped purchase, package and deliver 308 coats. By the time the team left, 308 formerly cold young people were warm. 

Other team members ran electric wires, hung lights and built a massive 9-foot-high climbing wall. Seth’s Wall is the dominant feature upon entering Hope Therapy Center. Hundreds will be blessed.

You can come to Vietnam and bless “the least of these” as the CLM team did! Or you can support such teams and our staff as Orphan Voice continues to reach out to “the least of these” in the Love of Christ.  Either way, let us hear from you. To sow your donation, give HERE. To inquire about a Friendship Team, email don.secrest@orphanvoice.org

Everyone Needs A Friend

Australians Bill and Ann Maree Chapman and Jane Shamrock were great friends to Phu Ninh special needs children and their families in January!

Ann Maree and Jane are therapists. Bill is a “can-do” engineer who builds what Jane and Ann Maree need to make children’s lives better. Together, they are a life-changing team.

To appreciate how the team became Christ to these children and families, one must know the families better.

What if you were the parent of a cerebral palsy child who had no wheelchair? If you were that parent, you would carry your child everywhere or tie him into a flimsy, plastic chair and secure the chair to your motorbike with rubber strips, to get him from one place to another.

Or what if you didn’t know what a “bath chair” is.  You may currently sit your child on the concrete floor and pour unheated water over his head as a means – your only means – to bathe him.

Bill, Jane and Ann Maree changed all that!

While Bill and Jane were making bath chairs, Ann Maree painstakingly fitted other children to high quality wheelchairs. Now, they have good wheelchairs that won’t cause sores.

Hear this team exit report: “Parent interviews reveal that the bath chairs were the most popular equipment. The bath chairs made a huge difference to the children and in the lives of the families. Many moms are using them for purposes other than bathing.”

That’s good news!

Orphan Voice staff minister to the deaf, those with physical disabilities, cleft palette children and others each month. We need your prayer and financial support to enable us to continue.

To bless special needs children, invest your gift by HERE. Thank you!

A Doctor Slept Here

Mai, a smart 11th grader, dreams of one day becoming a doctor.  She’s an exceptional student, but it’s hard to study on an empty stomach. On top of that, there’s no dad around – so it falls to Mai to care for her mom, who has special needs.

Victory House has come alongside Mai to cover the cost of school supplies, food and other necessities.  Praise God! Things have turned around!  She enjoys regular meals now. Before, it was not unusual for her to eat only once, or maybe twice, a day.

Mai and her mom are pictured above with the bed purchased by Victory House for their small apartment. Since receiving the help Mai tells us, “I’m happy because I’m not hungry anymore and I can focus on studying.”

“A million thanks,” her mom says, “does not tell how grateful I am.”

It’s easy to take everyday things for granted. Imagine what life would be like without a bed to sleep on, food to eat or paper to write on. But things are different for Mai because of you. To share in caring for others like Mai, donate HERE.

Seth’s Wall

Seth is Josh and Brandi Reyes six year old son. He’s an avid “wall climber,” which isn’t unique among young boys except that Seth is also a Down Syndromes child.

In honor of Seth’s determination, skill and the blessing that he is to others, Josh (Seth’s dad) and Blake of the Covenant Life Ministries Friendship Team, constructed a climbing wall for Hope Therapy Center. They knew from Seth’s example of overcoming hurdles that Vietnamese children could overcome too!

Seth’s picture will hang at Hope Therapy Center. There, he will encourage Vietnamese special needs children to press on to the good things that God has for them.

You Comfort Devastated Ones

Binh’s Hope

When Binh was seven, he became seriously ill. In a panic, his parents took him to the hospital. There, as a high fever and bacterial infection attacked, his life hung in the balance.

To his family’s great joy, after a month in hospital care, he stabilized. So much so that doctors soon discharged him. But with the discharge came a diagnosis of cerebral palsy with partial paralysis.

Binh’s dad sold all the family’s land to pay for his medical expenses and ongoing care. And then the money ran out. The family was in crisis. How could they get help?

At that point, Binh’s parents heard of Orphan Voice’s Phu Ninh Therapy Center. Hope entered their hears. They thought: “maybe this is the way.”

On his first visit to the Therapy Center, Binh couldn’t sit up on his own. He couldn’t hold anything because his hands and arms were too weak.

But Binh worked hard. Each day, his parents brought him for therapy and each day he said: “I’ll try my best.”

Everyone – parents, therapists, other children and families – were touched by his determination.

And determined he was! After six months of therapy, Binh learned to sit up with some help. After six additional months of work, he could sit up on his own!

The therapists worked hard to increase Binh’s hand and arm strength. They devised a weight lifting routine which he faithfully followed. Today, although still weak, he can hold a two kilo hand weight out from his body. He can walk 8 yards by himself. His mom rejoices because he now dresses himself – freeing her to attend to other household duties.

Binh still has a ways to go, but he has surely come a long, long way! His parents are overjoyed. To the Phu Ninh therapists, they say: “Thank you, moms!”

They also say “THANK YOU” to Orphan Voice partners!

All of Orphan Voice’s special needs ministries, including the Phu Ninh Therapy Center, are sharing the love of Christ with needy children and families each day. God encourages and heals through you. Your gifts change lives!

To invest in changing lives today, donate HERE. Or if you prefer, send your support to PO Box 910410, Lexington Kentucky 40591.

Typhoon Damrey Disaster Relief

Typhoon Damrey resulted in the deaths of 106 people. Mudslides covered entire houses, sometimes with families still inside. Water racing through valleys carried grown men away. Some children were covered by mud as they played.

In the wake of this great suffering, Orphans Voice Rapid Response teams reached out with the Love of Christ to provide emergency food, blankets and other supplies to 5400 men, women and children in the hardest hit areas. Our teams – that is to say YOU – were the first to arrive, except for the military. 

Your gifts to Orphan Voice save and change lives. Your gifts prepare the Lord’s way in the lives of people who are touched by the Love of God during their times of greatest need. Thank you!

To share the love of Christ with the hurting and needy today, donate online HERE.

First Time To The Dentist

In Orphan Voice’s Keeping Families Together program (KFT), we focus on the emotional and physical needs of the family for 18 months. During that time, we train, counsel and implement micro-economic projects so that the family can make more money. We want the family to “pay their own way” within 18 months so that they don’t consider placing their child in an orphanage and don’t become dependent on us. During that 18 month period, we make sure that the children’s medical needs are met.

Recently, Orphan Voice staff took several KFT children to the dentist–their first trip. Some had a good experience, but apparently not all!

Your prayer and financial support keeps families intact – children don’t go to orphanages!

To insure that a child stays with his parents, invest your gift by donating HERE. You can also mail to PO Box 910410, Lexington Kentucky 40591. Thank you!

Hanh: A Life Changed

Hanh: A Life Changed

“When I was six years old, my mom changed a lot. My life changed too.

Before my mom changed, she used to laugh. She played with me and I laughed too. She had a beautiful smile. I loved to sleep with her. She held me close when we slept. I was happy.

Then my aunt died in a motorcycle accident. My mom was pregnant with my little brother at that time. I don’t know what happened to my mom, but she got really sick.

She didn’t cook for us anymore. She didn’t sweep the house anymore. My brother was born and she nursed him, but she didn’t cook for me and my dad.

I didn’t go to school much. I had to take care of my mom, my brother and my dad. My mom laid in bed all day, and I washed her. I cleaned the house. I washed our clothes. I cooked.

I wanted to go to school but couldn’t. I didn’t have friends like others did.

I had two dreams at that time. I wanted to go to school and wanted my mother to be better.

One day, my baby brother was asleep and my mom take him to the well, put him into the bucket and lowered him into the well. But I saw it and ran to my baby brother before he reached the water. I pulled him up in the bucket, but was afraid for him after that.

Some days we didn’t have enough food. One time, we didn’t have food for three days. I was hungry.

This year, I came to live at Promise House. I am 13 now. It’s so different here. One of my dreams has come true! I go to school every day. I am far behind the other children but the housemother got me a tutor. She tells me not to worry that I am behind and not to think badly of myself.

I also have plenty of food, good clothes, friends and the mothers take good care of me. I wish my mom was better but for now, I like it here.

They also brought my brother here, so I don’t have to worry about him.”

Did You Know?

Hanh’s Brother – Saved From Drowning

Hanh* says: “When I was six years old, my mom changed. My life changed too.

Before then I was happy.  My mom laughed lot. We played and I laughed too. Her smile was pretty. She held me close when we slept together. She cooked good food too!

My mom had a sister. She was fun and we both loved her.  But she died in a motorcycle accident when my mom was pregnant with my baby brother. That’s when my mom changed.

After that, my mom didn’t wash our clothes or sweep the house. My brother was born and she nursed him, but she didn’t cook for me and my dad.

Because I had to take care of my mom, Dad and baby brother, I didn’t go to school much. I washed my mom each day as she lay in bed, cleaned the house, washed clothes and cooked.  I didn’t have friends.

I had two dreams. I wanted to go to school and I wanted my mom to be better.”

“One day, I saw my mom take my baby brother to the well, put him in the bucket and lower him down. But I ran to the well before he reached the water and pulled him up. That scared me.

One time, we didn’t have food for three days and I was very hungry.

My life changed again this year but it is much better now. I came to live at Promise House. It’s so different! I have good food – even meat and fish! I have new clothes, school supplies, tutors, and the housemothers take good care of me. I have friends too! I go to school every day!

Also my brother is here, so I don’t worry about him anymore. I know that he is safe.”

Thi – Saved From Sexual Abuse

“I was born in the countryside* and have seven brothers and sisters. Our lives were hard growing up.

My father drank rice wine – lots of it. It made him mean and he beat my mom.  At night, my mom took us to the woods to sleep so he couldn’t find us.”

“We were often hungry. My mom worked hard, but my dad didn’t help her.

When I was 11 years old, my mom took me to another family. I worked in their roadside store and they gave me food and a place to sleep. But I wasn’t able to go to school.”

“One night, the man I was staying with got drunk and attacked me. I didn’t know what to do, but his wife cut him with a knife. I had to leave.

I wanted to go home, but my mom told me to go to Danang. I was only 12 and I was afraid. But my mom gave me 20,000 dong for the ferry to cross the river and then buy the bus ticket to Danang. She told me to go to the city market and ask for work when I got there.

I got to the Danang market as my mom said, but no one hired me.”

“Just before dark, a nice lady took me to a Western restaurant and asked the owner to help me. The owner called Orphan Voice and Duc came to get me.

Looking back, I know that I misbehaved in those first days. Marissa and Enoch, Orphan Voice staff, gave me a home, but I didn’t want to come inside at night. I didn’t trust them. Later I did trust them.

Meeting the Orphan Voice staff was the best thing that ever happened to me! Soon I was able to go to Promise House. Wow! What a change! I went to school. I met Dung and Y and they became my best friends. I had plenty to eat. The caregivers and the Orphan Voice staff loved me.”

“Today, my life is a miracle. I’ve graduated from high school. I’m in college! I want to manage a hotel!”

Create A Different Destiny For Children at Year’s End

Consider what Hanh and Thi’s lives (above) would have been like without your intervention. Thi would have been sexually abused again – and again. She would have had a poor education with little prospects of getting a good job.

Hanh would have been covered with worries as she, a child, carried adult responsibilities for years. No school for her! No good job for her!

But those things didn’t happen to Thi and Hanh. You stopped it! Now they have a future and a hope.

Countless Vietnamese children and families wait to experience the Everlasting Love. We want to to bring them hope, love, and compassion and in 2018.

We need your generous support as this year ends to do that. Help us as we look to our 2018 responsibilities. Make Orphan Voice your year-end giving focus to insure that our life-changing work continues. You can sow your year-end gift HERE or mail your support to P.O. Box 910410, Lexington, Kentucky 40591. God bless you!