Tuesday, May 15, 2018


Here are some recent Galmi family pictures.

Mama A'I


Sara's brother


Waiting for the bus

In April, Grace spent the week days in Galmi to do Hausa language immersion.  She would catch a bus in Galmi to return to Maradi for the weekend.

While she was waiting at the bus stop one day she decided to take pictures of activity on the street right in front of her.  The temperature was probably around 108 degrees.  She took a lot of pictures but I have selected a number of favorites to show here.

Friday, May 11, 2018

Moving Day

Finally, we are in our new home off of the SIM Maradi Compound.  Now living right in the city of Maradi.

It took 4 men and 1 boy five hours to empty our house on the SIM compound, load everything into a truck. and then move everything into our new home.  Very glad that the day was cooler, overcast and a good breeze.  These guys worked real hard and never took a break.  Very grateful for their effort.

Here are some pictures from the May 10, 2018 move.  They moved everything from the house and laid it out next to the truck which was parked next to our storage shed.  Then they started loading when everything was visible around the truck.

The whole move from start to finish, with truck and labor, cost the equivalent or $265.00 Canadian.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

New Home

It is official.  We have a signed agreement to rent a house in Maradi.

Admittedly, it needs a lot of work on the inside but we feel that this old house is very strong in structure.

We just had a crew of 4 ladies and one young man come in and clean this past Saturday.  They got the whole place done in just over 3 hours.  There was a lot of cleaning required.  We think the house has been empty at least 2 years.

We like the neighborhood and feel that the house is well situated for us to continue our ministries in Hausa literacy, teaching English as a foreign language and doing Kids Club plus other ministries.  We are very close to a large school and university.

Down the road a ways from us is UNICEF.  The street is in fact called UNICEF Street.

Here are some initial pictures from the outside and inside.

There are a lot of mature trees that will provide much shade relief to the house.  Today it is 106 degrees.

As stated, a lot of work is required.  We hope to start this week.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Feed the Hungry

In our last post I talked about our time in Galmi.  What I did not mention was the fact that as we were driving the 193 km to Galmi we saw many children pleading for food on the side of the road.  This was unexpected and we were not prepared to deal with this.  The children would wave and bring their hands to their mouths to indicate that they were hungry.

While in Galmi we bought a tia (large bowl) of peanuts and filled 11 bags.  When I returned to Galmi I was to hand them out to those who were pleading for food.

The first stop I made I saw a number of children crying for food so I threw them 3 bags of peanuts.  They were on the other side of the road.  They were exuberant.

At the next stop I handed out one bag after which I was inundated with people.  The last 7 bags went out very quickly.  I cannot forget the absolute desperation in the faces of these people.  They attacked the car with a ferociousness I have never seen as they reached into the car trying to get some food. Their need for nourishment was extreme.  I was not afraid of their rush at the car.  I was saddened.  I have never seen a demonstration of need such as this.  Then there was the impact it had on me as I handed out these peanuts and the fact that I was foolish enough to think that 11 bags was sufficient.

I also tell this story because it happened at Easter.  As I look at social media I see a great many postings about celebrations, food and our general indulgences.  I acknowledge that we also celebrated Easter with family and much food.

But as I contemplate all this I think about these verses from Matthew 25:

34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’
We need to be vigilant to the needs of those around us because when we read further in the passage we see what happens to those who do not look after the needy.

41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’

44 “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’

45 “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’

46 “Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.
I do not write this as a condemnation of anyone other than myself for my lack of insight in not being more aware of the needs of those around me.

May God bless all of  you


Monday, April 2, 2018

Just spent the weekend in Galmi, with our family, for Easter.
It was hot, over 100 degrees, and dry, but it was great being with family.

Below, in the kitchen, Sarah is doing some prep work.

Here, Rashida is doing the dishes.

Grace making a salad.

Below, Rabi was doing most of the cooking.

Samuel and Azeezzi doing their absolute best to be helpful.

Rashida doing the laundry.  She was a very busy girl.

Rashida is the sister to Azeezzi.  Azeezzi is mute.

We had a great Easter Sunday feast of beef, fries, sauce and salad.  Food was not only shared by family but many others.
Easter Monday, Grace stayed in Galmi.  She will spend a month doing Hausa language immersion.
On Monday, Orest drove back to Maradi.  On the way he saw a woman sharpening a very large machete using the highway as her sharpening device.  He was not inclined to stop and take pictures.

Monday, February 12, 2018

February 12, 2018

We are excited because we will be departing for Africa in two weeks.

Looks like the surgery on Grace's knee went well, so there should be no delays.  There is a follow up appointment with the doctor in one week but we do not anticipate any problems.

When we experienced the first snow fall on this home assignment we marvelled at the beauty of the countryside covered in snow.  Then we experienced some really severe winter weather and it was like "enough is enough". 

Now, in February, we are in Toronto.  The weather is warmer but it just seems to keep snowing every day.  Enough is enough already.

Looking forward to African warmth.  Lots of sun and heat.  Which, of course, when we are there, we will complain about the heat, but we will not miss the snow.

In the beginning of home assignment, this was nice

This, however, is just plain - not nice

As we plan our return to Niger Orest has found the verse below to be an inspiration:

Proverbs 16:3(NIV)

3 Commit to the Lord whatever you do,
and he will establish your plans.