Friends, it’s truly been another extraordinary year. The impact that Children’s HopeChest is able to have on the lives and communities of thousands with your partnership is truly incredible. Sometimes, it can be easy to lose sight of how meaningful the difference we make in the lives of vulnerable people, when we live so far apart from each other. Especially in times of shared global struggles, the support we can offer to our brothers and sisters in Christ means everything.
I’m appealing to you now because this is the final chance to donate to our 2021 year-end campaign. Keep in mind that this year has a $300 (single) and $600 (couple) additional deduction if you are using the standard deduction. HopeChest relies heavily on your commitment to continue our operations for the benefit and growth in the most impoverished communities. We humbly request that you consider HopeChest in your Year-End giving plans.
As you know, what makes HopeChest unique is our holistic approach to transformation- not just helping provide the needs of today, but helping pave the way for individuals to be independent; for communities to be strengthened; and for children to flourish to their full potential. 2021 presented its own set of challenges- some foreseen and some not. Political and civil conflict, continued impact of Covid-19, isolation, and economic struggle all exacerbated the vulnerability of impoverished people everywhere. And yet, with the grace of God, HopeChest has been able to work in amazing ways to further our long-term vision of empowerment and hope.
We are delighted to showcase just how effective your investment can be- not just today, but for years to come.
Martin Elatum joined the Ngariam CarePoint in Uganda at just 11 years old. His single father had difficulty providing for him and his many siblings. Martin was able to be supported with nutrition through HopeChest, which eased the finances for the family. He was also able to go to school and receive other supplies that helped him continue his education. The CarePoint also offered a place to learn about the Gospel and find community, which is especially important to children like Martin who have lost a parent. Martin continued to receive this support all throughout his teenage years.
In 2017, Martin made the decision to accept an apprenticeship with a local carpenter’s workshop. He spent a year training at the Michael & Brothers’ Workshop, located in the Ngarium Corner Center. There, he was able to learn everything there is to know about woodworking. He learned how to make lots of different kinds of furniture. Once Martin graduated from his apprenticeship, Children’s HopeChest was able to financially support him with start-up funds and materials for him to open his own store.
Now, Martin has been able to run his shop on his own, paying the rent for the storefront himself. HopeChest leadership visits him regularly, to check up on him, his family, and his business. He’s even tutoring five students in woodworking at the store so that they can flourish, just as he did. His store makes 20,000 Ugandan shillings a day!
Martin also learned how to be responsible with money through joining multiple adult savings groups through HopeChest. He became part of the Arusiakan Village Savings and Loan Association, and the Ekeunos Youth Group. He has accomplished all of these things just in the 4 years since he started his carpentry apprenticeship!
Martin says that HopeChest has changed the course of his life dramatically. “I could have completely declined into an idle life. With the business I’ve started, I’m able to support myself and my family, and provide for all of their needs.”
He also wants to expand his workshop in the future, and make it into a learning center for other impoverished youth in his community who want to learn woodshop skills as well.
Martin’s story truly exemplifies the HopeChest mission of long-term sustainable change. With the transformation of one life, the community has a new store and small business owner, and the next generation has a new teacher to transform their lives, too. Change starts with one person at a time.
We hope that Martin’s story can touch your heart and that you can see the real impact you can have when you partner with HopeChest. Our work towards empowering impoverished communities seems vast, but we can take one step at a time towards that goal- together.
We wish you and your family a very Happy New Year, and all of us at HopeChest are looking forward to continuing our partnership with you in 2022.
In His grip,