We have seen our children grow, learn and experience true happiness. This is the first place where many of the children have experienced a sense of belonging and a feeling of safety. Here, they learn to read and write and dream of the future. We are building, discipling and traing them as individuals. We value and add to their feeling of self- worth. They hear about how Jesus loves them and how He has a wonderful plan for their lives. They are part of our loving family in Malawi. We are so proud of our beautiful children in Malawi.
An orphan (from the Greek ὀρφανός orfanos) is a child whose parents are dead or have abandoned them permanently.
Most orphans would say that they want more than anything else to have a family, to become rich and to be established in the world. This would enable them to get away from being an orphan. Finding their birth parents, if they are still alive, is not that important to them. They know that their parents will never look for them.
Nobody would ever choose to be an orphan. It is lonely, painful, and frightening. 1st fear is starvation. These children know people take advantage of orphans. When children are raised with chronic loss, without the psychological or physical protection they need and certainly deserve, it is most natural for them to internalize incredible fear. Not receiving necessary psychological or physical protection equals abandonment. Living with repeated abandonment experiences creates toxic shame. Shame arises from the painful message implied in abandonment: “You are not important. You are not of value.” This is the pain from which people need to heal.
Children are totally dependent on caretakers to provide safety in their environment. When they do not have this safety, they grow up believing that the world is an unsafe place, that people are not to be trusted, and that they do not deserve positive attention and adequate care.
Emotional abandonment occurs when children do not receive the emotional environment necessary for healthy development. Emotional abandonment occurs when a child has to hide a part of who he or she is in order to be accepted, or to not be rejected.
Abandonment issues many times are fused with distorted, confused, or undefined boundaries.
Abandonment plus distorted boundaries, at a time when children are developing their sense of worth, is the foundation for the belief in their own inadequacy and the central cause of their shame. Abandonment and boundary violations are in no way indictments of a child’s innate goodness and value. Instead, it reveals the flawed thinking, false beliefs, and impaired behaviors of those who hurt them. The wounds are struck deep in their young hearts and minds, and the very real pain can still be felt today. The causes of emotional injuries need to be understood and accepted so they can heal. Until that occurs, the pain will stay with them, becoming a driving force in their adult lives.
Orphans, are a vulnerable, unprotected group, that have not only experienced the immense grief of losing one or both of their parents, but are also at especially high risk of abuse because they have no one looking out for their best interests. Physical abuse, sexual abuse, or abandonment are all too common.
Many children and adults in Africa experience trauma through poverty and stress of not having a job, or enough money to support their family. Understandably, these experiences have left these individuals broken, guilty, angry, un-trusting, and in need of immense emotional healing. With no government programs in place, Unemployment Insurance, Blue Cross for medical needs, Soup stations for the poor, welfare programs, or hostiles such as we have in Canada, and often they are left to beg on the streets.
Our children are no longer orphans but have become a member of our family. They receive encouragement, prayers, love, education, shelter, food and all the other essentials. This shows them a glimpse of what the family of God begins to look like.
At Agape we are a foundation committed to this vision. We wish to transform children and raise them up from the ashes as per Isaiah 61. This passion we feel is to focus on the individual child. We apply first a physical environment of security. This is the main reason why we have committed to purchasing land and building a permanent home for our children. This ministry is focused on mentoring, teaching and equipping our children with skills. Each child as you have read above first feels the physical poverty, then the emotional poverty and last the spiritual poverty.
We have rescued children in the most desperate of circumstances. We have brought in young children who have been raped at a early age because in their culture men with HIV Aids had been told by witch doctors they would be healed of aids by raping a baby or a child, regardless of their sexual gender. They have experienced the loss of parents due to HIV/AIDS or other numerous diseases such as Malaria, Hep A, Hep E, the Dengue fever etc. . These children have tasted poverty, death, rape and abuse. We have brought them into a loving family where we carve out a future of hope for them. Our desire is to see each child succeed.
We believe that a family-style homes provide the stable, nurturing environment our children need to develop into healthy, relational, well-balanced adults. We provide well-rounded care for the orphaned children we serve. Due to the many children especially our high level of teens we decided to build dorms. Each dorm consists of 4 house matrons (or could in the future provide sets of married house parents on site) who care for children with the assistance of “aunties” which they consider to be their mothers.
Currently we are seeking positive male role models in a teaching capacity to provide male leadership roles to our children.
We are a Christian registered Charitable Foundation and God is the center of our foundation. We seek His Holy Spirit for leading, guiding, providing, and sustaining this work.
It is our heartfelt desire to serve God by helping the orphans and the widows as per James 1:27 Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultess is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.
We wish to carve a future generation, by mentoring, forming, molding and shaping many young lives for Christ and His Kingdom.
We invite you to learn more about us through our website and to join us in the numerous ways that you can come on board to help.
In Malawi there approximately 2,000,000 people are infected with HIV/AIDS. (this is 12% of 16,000,000 people, but this may not reflect a true accurate number. It could be much higher.)
The children are reflective of that statistic. For those children who are living with HIV we focus on the living not the dying. God loves them and has a plan for their life. We seek to honor each child’s life no matter their circumstance and offer them growth and make memories in. A place to belong and feel safe, to get an education and find their purpose, and to be healed.