As the ladies finished up their time in China, they reflected on the many blessing from the week.
Please enjoy the pictures and the highlights of the week:
-A peace was washed over us on Sunday when we walked into a room all set up for therapy.
-Looking up and hearing Carol say "We have babies!" as we were waiting to begin our day.
-Watching a sweet boy named Caleb in the stander feeding himself.
-Watching Naomi wanting to walk and then walking!
-Hearing Teddy's laugh.
-Watching Phillip learn how to roll from back to tummy!
-Watching Katie walking in the gait trainer.
-Seeing the children out of their beds and interacting and playing with each other!
-Looking over all the children in the laying down rooms now propped on their wedges in their beds.
-Seeing the children being propped up and fed in safer positions, not flat on their backs.
-The gifts from our new China friends.
At the end of the trip we passed our squatty potty seat to another group coming and jumped on the bus back to Nanning. It was so nice to have the time to reflect and rest on the ride. It has been amazing to watch God work this week. We are all looking forward to a comfy bed tonight. We fly out from Nanning to Beijing at 12pm on Thursday! We are excited to see our family and friends in NWA on Thursday night!
"No, I will not abandon you as orphans—I will come to you." John 14:18
We got to go inside the orphanage today. When we arrived, some of the staff had moved all of our supplies and equipment to the room in the orphanage we were allowed to use. The room is a nice, large, clean room with a fun mural painted on the walls.
We talked to the head nanny about setting up the room with all the supplies we had brought because we wanted to leave them for the kids. She was thankful and wanted us to do whatever was best for the kids as far as structuring the room.
The wonderful thing was that the nannies started bringing the kids in from their beds to this large multi-purpose room to explore and play with the toys. The children loved getting back into our toy bins and finding their favorite things. We were able to get some really fun pictures of the children playing together. There were kids on the mats playing, taking turns in the stander, walking with a gait trainer, sitting in corner chairs, and in new wheelchairs.
At lunchtime we pulled the wedges back out and discussed the importance of using them when feeding. We were allowed to go in the room and put one in each child’s bed.
We walked to lunch today since it wasn’t raining. We enjoys dumplings at a little street side café . The quantities of food these people want to feed us is insane. We often have lots of laughs about how much food ends up on our table at mealtime.
After lunch we strolled through a few stores between the café and the orphanage. We are quite the hit in the area. We had a large paparazzi experience. At some of the shops, the workers would run out and wave and yell like we were a part of One Direction.
A whirlwind of activity happened in the afternoon;
Assessing the remainder of the children
Educating on orthotics and stander use
Modeling language activities to do during play with a small group of children
We had dinner with the two directors of the orphanage and the head nanny at a top-notch restaurant. Once again there was tons of good food. We had an opportunity to thank them for sharing their kids with us. We talked about the willingness of the nannies to implement the suggestions we had given and their eagerness to learn more about how to help the children. We asked about a return trip and they said they would definitely want us back.
The team following us arrived at the hotel while we were finishing dinner. We met with them once we got back to the hotel and discussed what we had done this week. We gave them ideas of things to follow-up on and some info on the children. They asked to shadow us in the morning and go over charts before head back to Nanning. We will pass the baton around 1:30pm.
Please pray for Sarah, Mark, and Lydia. All three of these children have life-threatening conditions. We are working on ways to comfort them and / or help the conditions that are in desperate need of attention.
We will always remember these little ones we have met this week. Please pray their forever families find them as soon as possible.
*Please pray that our ladies have rest and the endurance to have a productive last day at the orphanage tomorrow and a safe trip home! Please enjoy a day with TEAMWorks in pictures!
The rain from the typhoon has started here in southern China. It is very dreary but we were blessed with lots of sweet little ones to brighten our day today.
The morning started with Amber and Julie fitting two different kids for a stander and gait trainer. These children were so happy to be up!
There were several nannies present in our therapy room early this morning so Paige decided to give them a quick training on proper feeding techniques, positioning, and why this is important with these children. The training brought up questions on choking. Paige then gave a brief summary on how to perform the heimlich maneuver. The importance of swaddling and how to swaddle was also discussed this morning.
Carol and Cindy had four children come in from two different foster homes to assess. The foster moms are taking great care of these little ones and you can tell they love them. They were all in need of protection for their feet so Amber fitted them and was able to send them home with a nice pair of shoes.
After a busy morning, it was time for another delicious meal from a local restaurant. Our facilitator, Allison, is getting good at ordering things we like (noodles, dumplings, and broccoli). She says we Americans eat "too much chicken". We hope she comes to Arkansas in the near future to experience some Chik-Fil-A. We had a nice discussion with the director at lunch and found out that he has been at this center for 19 years. He said he is happy we are here and helping with the children.
After lunch, we met two little ones in need of immediate prayer. One little one has a heart condition that needs to be addressed immediately. Allison began making calls to see how we could get the child to a bigger city or even back to the US for the medical attention she needs. The other child is 8 months old and has hydrocephalus. He has not had a shunt placed and his head is growing rapidly. We hope and pray to help these children get the surgeries they need as soon as possible.
Another little one was brought in from the community. His grandmother had heard we were here and wanted someone to look at his feet. He is 4 years old and just started walking in the past year. Amber was able to assess him and fit him for shoes and braces.
At the end of the day, several of the children came back to the center from school. After getting off the van, they came by our therapy room to say hi. Such sweet kids! These children leave for school
around 7:00AM and get home at 5:30PM. They have full days.
Dinner consisted of more noodles and dumplings. The director ordered a soup that he really wanted us all to try. It had snail in it. We will just say some tried it and others tried to find creative ways to look like they had eaten some when heads were turned.
Praising God for answered prayers. The director has invited us to go inside the orphanage. We are excited to move the toys, supplies, and equipment to places where it can be used daily with the children.
In that wonderful day you will sing: “Thank the Lord ! Praise his name! Tell the nations what he has done. Let them know how mighty he is! Sing to the Lord, for he has done wonderful things. Make known his praise around the world. (Isaiah 12:4, 5 NLT)
Today was our first day with kids in Beiliu. After a prayer-filled Saturday night, we were allowed to set-up a therapy room in a separate part of the complex from where the children live on Sunday morning. While finishing the room, we were delighted to see two beautiful babies in our doorway. We found the perfect fit for several pieces of equipment that we brought. Our bumbo seat we brought from TEAM was put to use today, if any one was wondering where it went.
We were able to see six children before lunch. Our lunch was provided by the vice-director and the head nanny. During lunch, Julie gave a photo book from a family who has adopted a child from this orphanage. The vice-director and nanny were thrilled to see pictures of this sweet girl and her forever family. They had questions about how she is doing and Julie was able to give them an update. After a lunch of 33 different Asian dishes and two pizzas, the feast ended and we went back to work in our new therapy space. The nannies brought several children for Paige and Cindy to watch while eating. They were able to give them safer and better feeding techniques and discuss the importance of positioning while eating. Luckily, Julie had assembled both corner chairs in the morning and these were used to improve feeding posture for these two children. Amber was able to fit two boys with wheelchairs. One of these boys was able to use a stander that made the journey with us all the way from Arkansas (thank you Clark family for donating this stander!). Carol completed developmental assessments on the children and captured our day in pictures.
In total we were able to assess and treat 11 children today. One of these children was brought in from a foster home in the community. After our day was complete we spent the evening making folders and supply bags for the kids with specific information for each child. We are looking forward to seeing more sweet faces tomorrow.
"We are anointed to bless people as Jesus did. God has given us the strength, ability, and power to do awesome works in His name. Do good all day - today."
Please continue to pray for our ladies as they work and build strong relationships with caregivers, staff and most importantly, the children.
TEAM China arrived at XNA at 5am on Thursday, November 7th. All bags, wheelchairs, walkers, and stander were checked at the gate with no extra fees. No hassle. Praise the Lord! We boarded plane to Detroit for the beginning of our Asia adventure.
In Detroit, we all prepared for our 13.5 hour flight to Beijing. We made our last calls to family and friends before boarding our flight. Everyone was ready to get some sleep, and Julie and Cindy slept through the first meal. We had a great selection of movies to keep us entertained.
In Beijing we had a little surprise. We were reunited with all the equipment. It didn't feel so good! Luckily, we only lost one handle on a walker. We had to re-check all bags and equipment at the China Southern desk. After 4 hours at that desk, checked our bags and all equipment. We were charged a large fee for the equipment but believing that there are kids that need the items and God will cover the cost. After finally coming to an agreement, we had 2 bags not pass security. One bag had lighter and the other a bendy bumper. The lighter now resides in Beijing. The bendy bumper was allowed to continue on the journey. While we were sitting at the gate waiting on our next flight to Nanning, our new friend and facilitator, Allison, walked up to our group and introduced herself. Can you believe she could pick out a group of sleep-deprived, crazy Arkansas women, with matching clothes and scarves and really greasy hair in the Beijing airport? We boarded the plane with no problems and pretty much passed out. We had hit the wall at this point. Once we landed, we gathered our bags and equipment again. It all arrived safe and sound. We were grateful to see our driver in a LARGE van to take us to the hotel. He was a trooper and packed the van with all the bags and equipment.
We arrived at the hotel at 2am. We highly recommend the Wharton Hotel in Nanning. We all got to communicate with friends and family at home, but more importantly shower and sleep!
We had a nice breakfast which included some amazing noodles. Paige, Julie, and Allison found a local copy shop to get all our education materials ready for the caregivers at the orphanage.
We all ventured to Wal-mart to get a few supplies. Our favorite supply that Amber spotted was a seat to assist us at potty time. Paige is refusing to use it but the rest of us are pretty excited!
We are on the road to Beiliu now. It is 1:30pm now and we are expected at the orphanage at 3pm. Lots of laughs heard in the van as we think about this journey...and full hearts as we think of the kids we are about to meet.
Please pray that the TEAM continues to feel well, have endurance, wisdom and that they are able to see all the children that need them the most!
Our TEAMWorks China group as been preparing for weeks and leave for China tomorrow morning. We are so excited and thankful for this opportunity to serve an orphanage in China. We appreciate the support and generosity of everyone that has helped make this trip possible. From praying over our plans to supporting the trip finanically, every thing, big and small has been felt and appreciated.
The TEAM has been able to successfully pack 9 suitcases full of supplies, equipment, shoes, braces and educational toys as well as 1 stander, 2 corner chairs, 3 benches, 5 wheel chairs and 4 walkers! Please join us in praying that these supplies are exactly what the children there need and that they would each be used to change lives.
As the TEAM heads begins their journey, please join us in praying over them!
-Safety and protection over Amber, Carol, Cindy, Julie and Paige and ease of travel as they arrive in China and navigate to the orphanage
-Favor with airlines to get all equipment and bags to China
-Good health and endurance as they make a long trip and work with each of the children
-That all bags and equipment make it successfully and into the hands of the children in need
-Preparing hearts of the people they will work with at the orphanage
-Blessings for everyone that has supported this trip
-Wisdom and guidance as the ladies work with each child and help educate caregivers
We couldn't be more excited to watch the Lord work through each of the ladies over the next week. We will keep everyone updated as often as we can!
"...Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain." -1 Corinthians 15:58