Armando Rusindo Mission Foundation
First of all thanks to the Provincial Women’s Board for the generous contribution to provide assistance for the women of the Moravian Church in Cuba. The work they are doing is beyond words. Although I have not been able to travel down since early Feb. I keep close contact with all the churches. As soon as Cuba opens their airports we hope to visit.
Thanks to the US government for issuing a special permit, we were able to send a 40 ft container down which arrived in April. We partnered with another Christian organization to send approx. 30,000 lbs. of much needed supplies.
Of the funds that the PWB collected we have spend in the following manner.
6 sewing machines, picture attached (768.64) that was distributed to three different churches. The women in the churches have started a sewing project making various items for sale.
A young lady who is a member of the Moravian church in Jaguey Grande (about 2 hours east of Habana) is studying to become a Maxifacial surgeon. Education is free, but it is much more complicated. She is at the university in Matanzas were she will complete her studies. The cheapest housing she can find is 50.00 per month. Once she receives of degree and gets a job she will make around 85.00 per month. (yes, per month). She is currently a dentist and making 50.00 per month. So, after paying rent she would have no spending money. So, we told her that we would give her 50.00 per month for the 2 ½ years to complete her studies. In Feb. we gave her 600.00 for the 2020 rent. She was so thankful for this grant from the PWB fund and said that once she becomes a surgeon she would help some other young lady.
This leave the fund a balance of 3,319.82. Once things open up and we can get back down, we will work with Tania Sanchez, the president of the province to seek out other opportunities.
I will keep you informed as things progress.
Again thanks for making a difference in the lives of many women in Cuba.
President & Founder
Armando Rusindo Mission Foundation
Dear Provincial Women's Board,
Thank you immensely for your financial support ($1,105!) for Tricklebee Cafe, the MCNP emerging ministry I am helping to birth in Milwaukee, WI. Earlier this year, my family and I intentionally moved into a neighborhood described as a "food desert" (an area, usually low-income, in which many residents cannot easily get to stores that sell affordable, healthful foods.). I joined the One World Everybody Eats (OWEE) Network recently, which is a network of cafe start-ups around the U.S. that are adhering to a pay-what-you-will model. This model allows each customer to set their own price for their meal. (We may have suggested prices or price ranges.) This model also allows customers to choose their own portion size. (We may offer small, medium and large plates, with mindful portion sizes. This helps eliminate food waste, curb overeating and supports our customers in adhering to their personal budgets.) OWEE cafes also offer healthy, seasonal foods, and commit to providing local, organic sustainably grown and harvested food. It is our goal to work with neighbors who are urban gardeners and farmers, bee and chicken keepers, and herbalists to procure locally grown, organic vegetables, fruit, cheese, honey, eggs, and herbs for our cafe. Customers in our cafe will also be able to volunteer in exchange for a meal, which provides a “hand up, not a hand out.” (Volunteers may work without a food handlers license, so long as they don't work with knives or fire.) It is also our goal to train and employ neighbors in the cafe who have had difficulty finding employment. We're mindful that properly trained volunteers can lead to future employment in the food service industry. With the OWEE model, volunteers are used to the greatest extent possible, which is key to building community and sustainability. Volunteers can work for meals or because they want to support our efforts to curb hunger in our community. Our paid staff will earn a living wage. (Between $12-$15.) Lastly, the OWEE model encourages cafes to have a Community Table--a larger table where individuals and small groups can sit with others and make a larger group that can cross social, economic and other societal boundaries.
Our prayer is that Tricklebee Cafe will be a delightful, safe, colorful place to gather in our neighborhood. We hope to feature dishes from all over the Moravian world each month, as well as offer a chapel space for meditation and prayer. Customers will even be able to "order" a spoken blessing off the menu. :-)
A scripture that guides us through this visioning and reality-making process is 1 Timothy 4:3: “God created food to be received with thanksgiving.” (It's that simple.)
Thank you for your generosity, and thank you in advance for your continued support!
Rev. Christie Melby-Gibbons