Noah Kreider grew up in the church but, just like many Kingdom Kids, he wandered a bit before finding his way to God. A HOPE Youth Corps in Dallas turned his life around. This was a couple of years ago, and now Noah is one of our most trusted Global Service Interns. Noah has led HYC in Bolivia, Croatia, and Manila in the Philippines this past Christmas, one of our most radical trips. Read what he had to say about his most recent HYC…
“This past Christmas, I was able to do something very special. I traveled to Manila, in the Philippines, to lead a HOPE Youth Corps along with Hannah DeSouza. I have been fortunate enough to be on 8 different HOPE Youth Corps around the globe, and this one was nothing short of special. Along with 35 participants from around the world, we went on a mission to try and give back this Christmas.
We gave our hearts, but the amount of love and gifts given back to us were priceless. We witnessed some of the most tragic poverty and sickness. But along with that, we saw the most joy, resilience, and bravery from the same people. As we built homes, they showed us how to build and fed us. When we taught the children and tried to heal wounds of abuse, they hugged us, and showed smiles. As we sang Christmas carols, they offered us everything they had.
My favourite place and moments were spent at the HOPE worldwide center in Laguna. This place has many functions, but is primarily a haven and home for a group of girls aged 6-20 that have suffered abuse unimaginable and unbearable to think about. Although these girls have suffered more than I can fathom, I watched as they loved every person they came into contact with. We sang songs to God together at 5am as the sun rose; we prayed as the sun went down, and they rejoiced all day long. They cried and their hearts broke as we left, but they told us that we would always be in their hearts. Some of the girls told me that because of HOPE Youth Corps they will now start studying the Bible. I admire these girls and I am inspired by their bravery. I also admire the HYC participants who decided to care this Christmas and, even in a small way, do what they could to help. God is truly working through the HOPE staff and the programs in the Philippines. Please talk to me if you are inspired to do something to help those in need. There are many ways to get involved. I challenge everyone to decide to care in some way, and see what God can do with that. Keep the Philippines in your hearts and prayers, and all of those around the world that are in these extreme situations. Thank you!”
The team at Sonja Kill Memorial Hospital recently celebrated its 5 year anniversary. SKMH opened in April 2012 with the mission to meet the needs of poor children and women of Southern Cambodia. It is managed by HOPE worldwide . Since its opening, nearly 50,000 patients have been touched by the team. On May 26, the hospital honored 31 employees who have served since the hospital’s opening day. Through the dedication of its staff and supporters, SKMH has seen tremendous growth. Since its opening, the hospital has accomplished the following:
· More than 140,000 patient consultations with nearly 50,000 new patients
· 71% of visits have been for women and children
· Nearly 800 children have been born at the hospital since the opening of the Maternity building in November 2014
· 7 Cambodian doctors have graduated from three year hospital training program.
· Currently employs over 180 people
· The Neo Natal Intensive care unit opened November 2015. To date the NICU has served 49 children
· Centralized Medical Gas System for NICU and campus opened in November 2016.
· Surgical department opened in 2015
· Surgical team has performed over 360 surgeries in 2016, not including C-Sections. 86 surgeries have been for children
· Blood bank opened in August 2016
· A Learning Center for children of hospital staff opened on June 12
Sonja Kill Memorial Hospital has been blessed with international support from medical and administrative partners as well as volunteers from around the world to serve and teach. The local Cambodian staff continues to grow and serves as the primary patient care providers.
The team is grateful for all the support that has been given this past five years; however, there remains more to do. Future development includes the addition of a CT scan, upgraded X-ray diagnostic equipment, continued development of staff training programming and pursuit of international accreditations. Please consider how you can make a difference at the Sonja Kill Memorial Hospital. Go to https://www.hopeww.org/donate . Use the drop down box and select Sonja Kill Memorial Hospital. If you wish to learn more about the Sonja Kill Memorial Hospital, please visit www.skmh.org .
Dr. Rin Receiving the Empathy Amplified AwardClick here to watch .
Jenny Harkabus spent Christmas serving in the Philippines. She wrote this, and also made a short video:
I did not imagine that I would be spending Christmas in the Philippines for my first HOPE Youth Corps experience. This opportunity has deeply changed my perspective on the importance of service in my daily walk.
We are created in God's image, therefore we are meant to help and serve others. I know this to be true because I have never felt so used by God and fulfilled, than the times spent serving and pouring out my love in the Philippines.
James 1:27 says, " Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world." Some translations refer to this as true religion. The bible also stresses the importance of giving to the poor (1 John 3:17, Matt 9:21, Proverbs 14:31). God considers caring for the poor and orphans as true religion, yet this can be an area of faith that is overlooked.
I was privileged to spend time with girls who have experienced trauma and abuse at the HOPE worldwide center in Laguna. Many of these girls have been separated from their families, becoming orphans, as a result of the abuse they have experienced. I also received the opportunity to play with children within the community as we rebuilt their homes and provided them with medical care. I witnessed the children’s precious value for human relationships, as they clung to me emotionally and physically. They showed me instant love and respect, which I find to be rare in today’s society. Our focus should be about investing in others just as the children in the Philippines invested in me.