Some give by going, others go by giving, and everyone serves by praying.
Through our Christmas Giving Together program—November 5-26—we have three opportunities to reach out to our community.
FIRST: We are collecting toys for children (infants-age 12) and gifts and clothing for youth (ages 13-17) for the ACTS Christmas Store. Last year, through your generosity, 72 children and youth had presents under the tree.
Suggested Gift List (all items new and unwrapped):
Items can be placed in the gift boxes in the narthex and fellowship hall.
If you’d like to volunteer at the ACTS Christmas Store, please call the church office.
SECOND: Financial contributions will be used by Christ Central Aiken/Graniteville (CCAG) to purchase gift cards. CCAG takes parents, whose children are in their mentoring program, to shop for presents. Last year 30 children received gifts. Contributions can be made payable to FPC with “Giving Together” on the memo line or online and designated for “Giving Together.”
THIRD: Both ACTS and CCAG need socks and underwear (all sizes and styles, children and adults) to give to their clients during the year. Items can be placed in the gift boxes in the narthex and fellowship hall.
November 19 - December 17
Mission & Outreach Committee
Agencies that are being sponsored this year include Children’s Place, Inc., Christ Central of Aiken, the Community Medical Clinic of Aiken County, Fellowship Camp & Conference Center, the Honduras Agape Foundation, the Medical Benevolence Foundation, the Presbyterian Mission Agency, and the South Sudan Ministry of Trinity Presbytery.
Brochures are available in the Narthex and the office hallway.
Mwandi Mission Hospital Project
Currently, there are 52 babies in the Mwandi Mission Hospital Project in Zambia that Formula for Life™ supports.
About six months ago, a set of triplets was born. Their father left when he found out the baby was actually triplets, and the mother had meningitis and was not aware of the birth. She has brain damage but is out of the hospital now. Her sisters-in-law have largely been responsible for the care of the triplets. In the photos, they are carrying a three months supply of formula from the hospital to their home.
The cost of formula for an average month’s supply is K550 (Zambian Kwacha), which is about $60. This is very expensive for most people in the area. A hospital nutritionist, Brightone Gondwe, moderates and helps the babies, particularly as they make the transition from formula to cow’s milk. Some babies are able to stop formula when they reach 12 months old, but others continue until 18 months old if Brightone finds it necessary.
In July, Verna Case took a group of pre-med students from Davidson College to Mwandi for two weeks of exposure to medical conditions in a third world country. She reported that during the first week that they were there, three people known to many in the community died at the hospital overnight. One of the individuals was the Environmental Health Technician. Another was the wife of the night watchman who was the next leader of the Women’s Christian Fellowship (WCF) at the United Church of Zambia (UCZ).
The new Minister of Health has mandated that all physicians who are in administrative positions are required to spend a certain portion of their time in the clinical specialty working with patients. This is a great step forward as Isaac Tembo whose education was paid for by members of the American Hospital Board for Mwandi and who was supposed to come back to Mwandi and work in the hospital has not been fulfilling his contract. He has a position as Director of the state hospitals in the western area of Zambia which includes Mwandi, a mission hospital owned by the United Church of Zambia and staffed by government health workers. He is assigned to the Mwandi hospital but does not show up to work on a regular basis.
Verna commented on the upcoming presidential election saying the political situation is grim. The president got the parliament to extend the “State of Emergency” until October because of the fires intentionally set in Lusaka. The opposition leader who is accused of treason was moved to a maximum security prison. Verna fears that the country is on the verge of both economic and political crisis. Travelers’ warnings for the State Department about staying away from crowds in the cities have been issued. She doubted that the unrest would reach Livingstone any time soon. (As of this writing the opposition candidate has been released and the government is not prosecuting.)
The UCZ has a 10 year upgrade planned for the hospital to bring it up to standards conforming to a level II District hospital. Foremost at this point is an expansion of the treated water supply. The American partners are exploring various means of assistance by which to achieve this.
Currently only the hospital receives treated water. The government has mandated all staff housing is also to receive treated water (currently only filtered river water). The guest houses and Kandiana (a shelter on the hospital grounds for elderly, indigent villagers) would be included. At current levels about 300 people would require treated water, but at the end of the 10 year upgrade this would increase to about 500 people.
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Our Formula For Life™ (FFL) necklace project provides urgently needed funding to help in the prevention of mother-to-child transmission for HIV-negative babies whose mothers are HIV-positive in Mwandi, Zambia. Since the project began in 2009, the total amount of money raised is now over $246,000.
FFL could really use your help, especially with selling events! The only job requirements are a smiling face and a willing heart! There are many upcoming events, including Aiken’s Makin’ (September 8 and 9). Please let the church office know if you would like to help. You can be a part of this amazing mission which is making a difference in our world!
Honduras Agape Foundation (HAF) manifests the love of Jesus Christ to the people of Honduras by providing medical and dental health care; education assistance; construction; and support for the community of believers.
For more information about Honduras Agape Foundation and its various programs, or if you have an interest in supporting areas of greatest need, please contact Tom Britt.
Click here to visit the Honduras Agape Foundation website.
Please leave your contributions for ACTS in the baskets in the narthex wings.
November - 1 or 2 lb bags of dried beans
December - pasta sauce
ACTS Needs Volunteers!
ACTS needs volunteers in many areas: which one is right for you?
Call 803.649.3800 for more information.
Mission: Provides temporary and emergency aid, in the name of Jesus Christ to persons in need in the Aiken, SC area
Opportunities: Receptionist, interviewer, sorting and filling clothing orders, filling food orders, picking-up furniture, working Senior Food distribution, praying for the ministry
Mission: Provides quality, affordable housing to partner families in need by binding together volunteers, businesses, local government, professional/social organizations, and churches.
Opportunities: Various tasks associated with construction of houses, services on various committees, various tasks at the ReStore and in the office
Mission: Dedicated to improving the quality of life for impoverished, uninsured residents of Aiken County by providing ongoing healthcare in a professional setting.
Opportunities: Volunteer pharmacy technicians, pharmacists, physicians,nurses, receptionists, (checking patients in and out, answering phones, ordering/checking medications, and data entry)
Mission: As a therapeutic childcare center serving 110 children everyday between the ages of 2 and 6, Children's Place works toward the vision of a safe and nurturing environment for every child in Aiken County
Opportunities: Reading to the children, helping with homework after school, and answering the phone
Mission: Dedicated to meeting the needs of the poor and disadvantaged in our community by first providing basic needs of food and clothing and then providing education and training in areas needed to secure and retain employment.
Opportunities: Preschool readiness; after school mentoring of children and youth ages 5-18; GED tutoring; and introduction to vocational skills (to name a few).