Here we are, four months into 2016. Time stops for no one. Despite being in the middle of rainy season and power outages of eight hours or more each day, life and time just keeps on moving. Starting this month, the New Life Center (NLC), and all of the ministries, will be getting much busier until the first of November. The calendar always stays full during these dates. Work teams are coming, as well as a number of gatherings that will take place at the NLC, starting with the Holy Spirit Encounter gathering April 20th–24th.
Some ministries never stop. Working with the after-school tutoring program has been in full swing since January, which is the beginning of the year round school year. This has been a very rewarding ministry working with orphaned and vulnerable students in our surrounding communities. The school systems in Zambia remain quite challenged and students that want to learn become very frustrated. We have sponsored hundreds of students with their school fees for years. However, because of the lack of consistent teaching in the local schools, when it came time for exams very few students were passing. Because of dedicated retired Zambian teachers, Mrs. Mwamulima and Mrs. Tembo, along with Sandy and an UMVIM volunteer, Emily Padilla, most of vulnerable students are now able to pass their grade 9 and grade 12 exams and move on to a brighter future in finding jobs or going on to university or college.
We have a couple of churches and some individual sponsors that support these students by providing their yearly school fees and needed shoes and school supplies. Thanks to a grant from Goodwill Community Foundation (GCF) we also have a bus that goes and picks up school students, as well as computer students, in the morning and afternoon. We feed the afternoon students a meal before they continue their studies since it is most likely the only food they have had all day. Think about it… going to school all day and then come to NLC for another two to three hours. These students want to learn! They understand this is their time and chance to move forward in life because of a good education.
The Goodwill Commuity Foundation, in Raliegh, North Carolina, has also helped us establish the after-school tutoring program as well as the Computer and Technology training classes in the mornings. They not only provide the salaries for the teachers, as well as the afternoon food, but also maintain the vehicles that they have donated for the transport of the students to NLC. With all of us working together, we are making a big difference in the lives of the many people who come to NLC each day for education. We can’t say thank you enough for all that each of you are doing to keep this project of development going!
Because of the increasing number of students that want help with extra tutoring we just built three more classrooms. These classrooms are much bigger than the computer classrooms and the library that we have been using. This will be a great help for not only the students that come through each day, but also for the many different conferences and training events that are held at NLC. We thank the Danielle Foundation for their many years of support and will dedicate these new classrooms to their vision of helping others, even in Africa.
We continually give thanks to God for our partners in ministry at the New Life Center. We appreciate all that each of you do to allow us to work with so many students. We are making a difference in their lives and we thank you!
In His service,
Rev. Delbert and Sandy Groves