The staff fundraiser went VERY well. Mike spent 2 days in the kitchen with various helpers, and despite my concerns about not having enough, we had about twice as much food as we needed! (There were around 110 people, including about 30 from the base!)
We showed a video created by one of the staff that shows the effects of various ministries on the base. I shared, challenging the local people to support missionaries in Rwanda and from Rwanda.
Each staff member shared at their table about the ministry that they personally are involved with, and we were all very supported by the work of other staff members, DTS students, and a team that is here from South Africa.
This kind of event has rewards that are beyond measuring, like publicity, relationship building, and the staff feeling supported by a community. But for the 11 staff members that participated there were some really amazing measurable effects:
- One staff member alone collected donations that evening that could cover about 2 months living expenses, and was about twice as much as we spent to make the evening happen
- one of the attendees decided to take a Discipleship Training School
- 5 staff members received new specific pledges of monthly support
- one staff member who has been rebuffed by churches in the past recieved the promise from the pastor of the church she attends that they will work towards supporting her
- one staff member was discouraged before the event: a wedding at her church meant that several people could not come, however, those that did come promised to help spread the word about what she was doing to raise funds
- although the people she invited did not know each other prior to the evening, one staff member’s table stayed about half an hour after everyone else left. They organized themselves into a support team, complete with a plan for financial support, a chairperson, a plan to speak to others, and to meet regularly for prayer and updates!
Now, we continue to encourage the staff to communicate, to pursue relationships, and to be intentional about raising support. My favourite outcome of the evening is that many of the staff who were feeling hopeless about their personal support are now encouraged, and have a place to start raising funds so that they can continue the amazing work they do!