by Woody Cadet (Education Manager) and Heidi Schulte (Development Coordinator)

Yesterday was a very special day for the Thrive children in Savanette and our MH4H team. The moms and the kids were so excited to be a part of this celebration, and so were we! We arrived in Savanette shortly after 8:00, after what Heidi calls a “fun” ride. (Woody wouldn’t necessarily agree.) For those of you who have ridden that road, you know what we mean. Somehow we managed to keep our nice clothes clean! Thanks to Woody’s excellent organization, we arrived to find meal preparation well under way. We were able to spend some time praying for the graduation program and all those involved. We also had the opportunity to pray for the school, as they are badly in need of more classrooms and are without the funds to continue building them. Because 180 for Haiti (which is the program these children are going into) is enabling more children to attend school, we are contributing to this wonderful problem.

Just before 9:00, we looked into the church to see how many Thrive children and their mothers/care-givers had arrived, and around half of them were there. By the end of the time, all but one child was present, and each of them received their graduation certificate, a brand new backpack and water bottle for school, and a DELICIOUS meal with a drink. We could tell that the kids and their mothers really enjoyed the program, and especially the gifts that encouraged them in their continued development and growth. At one point in the program, Woody invited any of the caregivers present to share a word with the group. The two women who spoke were so grateful for the sponsors and for Woody and the MH4H staff, saying that all of this was a blessing from God!

I (Heidi) was amazed and grateful for all the “many hands” who participated in making this morning happen. Woody did an incredible job orchestrating all the details of the location, food, and people involved. Together we enjoyed planning the program and were blessed to have a local teacher help lead the songs/worship time, as well as help with facilitating. One of our younger student friends arrived early that morning to accompany the supplies and watch over them for us. Our pastor friend, who runs one of our partnering schools and was hosting the celebration in his church, came as well and served with us throughout the morning. He shared a message of encouragement and gratitude, and he assisted as we passed out certificates and took photos of the students. We also recognize the sponsors who have faithfully given to support these children, and the countless others who were present for the graduation, either in body or in spirit. We are grateful for your love, support and prayers. What a great picture of how God delights in these little ones and how His people can be His hands of blessing to them! We are truly better together and are so grateful for each of you!