We have posted many photo’s in this letter however, the old adage that “A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words” is true! With the rainy season threatening, activities for Cleft Of The Rock Ministries have been many and have occurred rapidly in succession. In May, Jane traveled with Pam VanEss into the mountains to work with the “Finca (Coffee Farm) Ngabe kids- presenting a 2 week teaching program about the “Creation”( which Pam created!) while the parents finished out the Coffee Picking Season. Upon completion of the summer schooling of Casa Esperanza at this finca, led by Armando Dixson , there was a celebration of the learning that had taken place. We were honored to be part of the teaching and learning and assist in the celebration! Armando had requested a need for a soccer ball so the children could have play activities. We were also able to fulfill that need.
Following up on our April activities we are very happy to report that the drilling for the well at the Suzanna District in Oma @ San Felix was a “great success”! The challenges to get this project to its completion were many! Getting the drilling company to commit to a date, having an attorney draw up a contract, also proper interpretation and wording of the contract which finally fell into place and the drilling started. Prayers were being answered; the church community was praying for over a year not just for any water, but for good water. This was also verified with a very favorable Laboratory written/typed report of the water from the well.
In May just a week before the rainy season began in earnest- manual labor began for us. Sam organized a day with the pastor and some men from the community to help set up for the area at the well so that pipe could be put down and a pump installed. This took place with our friend Craig Hebert from Louisiana helping in setting up the necessary equipment and shelter so that we could keep working even as rains began to threaten our efforts!
We poured the cement the day upon arriving at the site as we had pre-formed the structure to retain the cement. The people from the church community were so helpful in having the stones and materials there ready for us to get into place before pouring the cement pad. The next day we set the pump into place and prayed a prayer of “blessing” upon the well! It was only a matter of a day after the hand pump was set that we found out that the church had a generator that could handle the electrical requirements of a submersible pump; so we talked with the engineer of the drilling company and decided to go with a submersible pump of 220 volts. Upon the return to install piping to the storage tank we were surprised when a 4 WD pick-up truck came to the site and said there were sent by the electric company to survey and see about our needs for electric. What we hadn’t known was that in the Indigenous Comarca (Reservation) is; that if you can show the need for electric, the government will make an effort to accommodate that need. In this case there is electricity about only ¼ mile away……we were elated! Presently we are waiting to see when that may take place.
We have a minimum of about a week of work to clean up and do some work at the Feeding shelter area so that the children and the community can enjoy the health benefits of clean water. The water is ready to drink right out of the well! We also purchased a 500-gallon storage tank with filtration and put it in place and installed a 1 & ¼” PVC line to the tank.
On November12th the Ngobe church will be celebrating their 25th Anniversary and a Public Dedication of the well at the same time. They provided a time slot in their Agenda for Cleft of The Rock Ministries to make a short presentation (they asked us!) and they have also invited local officials to be present. We feel quite honored to be part of their community there on the Comarca, even though we are about a (2) hour drive away! They normally have about 300 Ngobes attend these fiesta’s.
Other upcoming projects include a repair to a water distribution line in Soloy, (also on the Comarca ,but in a different location)where there has been a break in the lines and perhaps the need to replace a storage tank there. The area is quite remote and the best way to access it is by walking or getting a horse and ride back about 1/2 hours away from the main road. This project is coming up soon so we will be needing funding for this. Estimations would be about $600.00-1,000.00.
There are more needs at Llano Tugri (Ngabe Capital) where we were instrumental in providing materials for a continuing after school learning center this past January. While there, the elders of the community took us to a parcel of land that one of the families had donated for the afterschool program housing unit to be built.
Presently they must meet in a government building and it is difficult to coordinate the activities. There are no chairs or tables to work on-the children sit on the floor. This presents the opportunity for us to help put a building in place to serve the needs at that location. The amazing thing is that since they are so community oriented they all give of their labor for free; however, the overseer of the project gets paid. We cannot pay the person overseeing the project and its incumbent upon them to pay the person for the job to be completed in a safe and timely manner.
Size of building is roughly 25’x30’. We had an estimate of roughly $ 3,300.00 for the cement, blocks, cement floor and roof support system and the metal roofing. It will require about another $2,500 to complete it, that being cement blocks for the walls, a couple of windows and a secure door. We feel certain that there is also an ongoing need for more teaching materials; the cost for those would be about $200.00. Later on, they will need tables and chairs.
The (2) Feeding programs at Llano Tugri and San Felix are ongoing as the children continue to have basic nutritional needs met. There are many more needs; like basic health, dental and hygiene. If you or a mission minded group would like to make a trip down to do some finishing touches around the Feeding Shelter and Church, we would accommodate and make it a rewarding experience! God Bless you for your past support – we were in awe for donations for the water well. God provided all of it! We do need your financial and prayer support to continue this work!
In God we trust, for our financial needs for the Ngobe’s. Their health needs are being met with the well -we found out the pastor was very grateful for the water because he (they) had been drinking dirty water! No wonder they were praying so fervently for good water!
God Bless all who donated for the well. It is a much appreciated answer to prayer for the Ngobes in that area. Water supply and good water is hard to come by.
In Christ’s love for all,
Samuel & Jane Ruth