Earlier this year, we announced that we were re-opening the Mango Tree and were going to be operating it for two weeks, with the intention of selling the store to another ministry for them to operate. When the time came to complete the sale, the deal fell through and we will not be selling the Mango Tree at this time to that ministry. As felt called to re-open the Mango Tree, we felt it was also very important to keep it open through the summer, operating under Many Hands for Haiti.  But, we didn’t have management to run it past the initial two weeks. As we prayed, God lifted some names for us to contact and we are pleased to announce the day-to-day leadership of Mango Tree for this summer: Austin & Jessica Blanchard and Josh DeWaard.

Austin Blanchard is originally from Oskaloosa, and is a graduate of Central College. Since graduating Austin has been around the world being involved in missions. He has spent time in Australia, Papua New Guinea, Hawaii, and England. Austin is passionate about communities coming together to experience and enjoy God. Him and his wife Jessica believe that to transform communities with God they are to start small business in small communities. Jessica, from England (come hear her accent!) has spent the last 6 years serving with YWAM in Australia and Papua New Guinea will be spending some time volunteering at The Mango Tree.

Josh DeWaard is no stranger to Pella, graduating from Pella High in 2013 and graduating from Central College in 2017. He is also the co-founder of Unite Midwest, an annual event to unite believers across the region to experience God and the fullness of worship. Josh will be in Pella through this summer.

We are excited for the Mango Tree to get back to its roots this summer, creating a missional space where people can feel a touch of Jesus. Starting June 4, the store will be open Tuesday-Sunday, from 2 PM – 10 PM.

Volunteers give us the ability to create the world-class experience we want for the store. If you are interested in volunteering with us this summer, please send an email to [email protected]. These volunteer hours will still count towards a mission trip with Many Hands for Haiti.