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News

Words

Surreal. Home. Crazy. Life. Called.

These words surfaced when asking the team about our first week in Bogotá.

It has been surreal. After first being presented with the thought of moving to Bogotá, to praying and asking God for direction, to saying ‘yes’ to following God here, to planning, to raising funds and prayer support and now to finally be living in Bogotá with our bags unpacked is, yes, very surreal.

It is becoming home. We arrived late Tuesday night with no troubles in flying or receiving all of our luggage (Thank you for your prayers) and came to a house that looks extremely different from any American home. A house that had been prayed for and diligently sought after by the Moore’s and God gave it to us, yet of course, it didn’t feel like home. In the past week, we have made steps to make it into our home. We were able to buy mattresses and bed frames. We have turned the blank, white walls in our room into walls that have pictures of loved ones, fun memories and little reminders of our home in America. This house is turning into our home.

It is absolutely crazy. Crazy to not be able to understand the language. Crazy to see how people drive here. Crazy to not flush your toilet paper in the toilet. Crazy to not be able to wear shorts even though it is hot outside because the culture deems Bogotá to be ‘cold country’. Crazy to not be able to just go for a walk outside alone. It is absolutely crazy but that doesn’t mean bad or good. Just different. Life will be different here and it will definitely take time to adjust!

We feel life. Even though it has been a week full of chaos, we do not feel drained. We are being energized, as a team, through worship and prayer knowing we are at the center of God’s will and that is exactly where we want to be. Jesus came to give us ‘life and life abundantly’ and when we follow Him into the unknown, we experience life. We are cognizant of the trials to flood our way and the mountains and valleys we will also experience, but there is no greater joy than following Jesus and the life He gives.

We feel called. We are comforted to know each of us individually feels called by God to be living in this city, at this time. Our obedience to God brought us here and we are confident in His plan for what He has in store. We are excited to follow His lead in navigating strategies to claim this city for Christ.

Amidst the crazy, we are confident of God’s specific call for each of us as we continue to do life together here in Bogotá, making this our new home and having the feeling of surreal wane and reality grow.

Written by: Olivia Osterlund

 

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23
Dec

Coming up for 2015

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I’m very excited to share about the changes we have in store in 2015 for Little Changes, and specifically our Milk Project.  The Milk Project has a special place in our hearts here at Little Changes because it was the project that launched the entire organization, and it has been a joy for the entire LCI team to see how it has continued to grow and impact the community in Mozambique.

 

What’s new for 2015?

We are starting a sponsorship program for the babies that come into the Milk Program.  Before, when you donated, you were simply making a general donation to the program.  Now, when you donate to the Milk Project, you will be paired with a baby.  You will receive a picture and a story for your baby as well as updates on the baby’s progress.  All it takes is $30 per month – just $1 a day – to sponsor one of these precious babies.  For those who prefer one-time donations, a $180 donation sponsors one child for the six months that the baby is in the program.

 

So, what exactly is the Milk Project?

The Milk Project is a weekly clinic, combined with home visits, specifically operated for newborn babies in desperate need of nutrition and healthy growth.  Typically, this means a regular supply of infant formula at a weekly check-up to make sure that the newborn is healthy and growing.

 

Why formula?  Isn’t breastmilk preferred over infant formula?

Yes, breastmilk is the preferred choice.  Studies have shown breastmilk to provide improved nutrition over formula, even before considering the cost of formula.  Before a baby is admitted into the Milk Project, a licensed nurse performs an evaluation to determine that breastfeeding is not a viable option.

 

What are the typical causes for breastfeeding to be unfeasible?

We usually see one of the following three causes.

 

Insufficient Milk Production is the most common cause.  Malnutrition affects many mothers in the area, making it difficult to provide a full supply of milk.  Severe breast infections and abscesses also constrict supply.  Recently, we have seen an influx of twins and the mother is unable to produce enough for both babies.  In these cases, formula is incorporated alongside normal breastfeeding practices.

 

HIV in babies is to be avoided at all costs.  An antiretroviral (ARV) treatment just before pregnancy has become quite effective at preventing transmission from an HIV-positive mother to the baby.  Since HIV can still be passed through breast milk, formula is the preferred alternative in cases with HIV-positive mothers.

 

A Deceased Mother is unfortunately an all-too-real situation.  A family member will look after the orphaned baby, but does not have the means to buy the infant formula.  In some cases, the mother has not passed but is too sick to care for the baby.

 

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How has the Milk Project changed in the last three years?

The most noticeable change has been the number of babies.  When Little Changes started, we typically saw 10-15 babies each week.  Now, we see 40-45 babies each week!  There has been no change in our policy to explain the growth; it has simply been by word of mouth from mothers who have seen their baby helped by the Milk Program.

 

We also have a fully Mozambican staff now.  Our lead nurse, Fatima, is able to connect at a much deeper level with the mothers and this is a reason why we have seen such growth.  It is so encouraging to see Mozambicans serving other Mozambicans!

 

With your generosity, we can continue to grow in our village and to surrounding communities.  We have grown so much in these three years and we hope to continue to grow, so please consider making a donation to this beautiful project and sharing with your friends and family.

 

Sincerely,

Alex Moore

President of Little Changes International

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5
Nov

BINGO BINGO BINGO

Hey you!

Don’t have plans Friday night? No problem, we can fix that. Already have plans? No worries, we can fix that too!

Come to our family friendly Bingo night this Friday, November 7 at St. Thomas University. It will be an amazing night with lots of fun, full dinner included, and FREE childcare! Family bingo night is a fundraiser benefiting a volunteer home in Armenia, Colombia which houses an average of 35 under privileged children at a time. All proceeds of the event will go directly to maintaining the home, nutritious meals, and drastically changing the lives of these children. For more information, go to www.Little-Changes.org. We appreciate your contribution as none of this would be possible without your generous support!

 

LCI Bingo Night

Don’t think about it anymore, grab all of your friends and head down to St. Thomas U. You will change a person’s live all while having a blast! Purchase your ticket here!

If you can’t make it, we will really miss you! However, you can still be a part of the night by purchasing a raffle ticket, or 20 of them! The more you buy the better chance you will have to win many prizes! Buy your raffle tickets  here!

See you soon!

 

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8
Oct

Stinky Fish


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Luke 5:1-11

One day as Jesus was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret, the people were crowding around him and listening to the word of God. He saw at the water’s edge two boats, left there by the fishermen, who were washing their nets. He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat. When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.” Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.” When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink. When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus’ knees and said, “Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!” For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken, and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon’s partners. Then Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid; from now on you will fish for people.” So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.

Today I was at a women’s gathering and we heard from Peter Craig, the executive director for an organization called Moving Works; a non-profit organization that travels the world to make films about Jesus in the hopes that people would have life-altering effects in response to Jesus’ redemptive story. He shared about God’s call to leave the Hollywood life behind but still use his gifts and abilities to glorify Him. What a blessing to hear this man’s testimony and to see how wonderful God’s plans are for our lives. We now get to be a part of God’s story in his life by seeing these movies and seeing how God is moving all over the world. You can see his movies at www.movingworks.org! I’m glad he chose EVERYTHING and left stinky fish behind.

Peter started out with Luke 5:1-11. I’ve heard this passage many times and I’ve heard many more times explanations on it. I, however, had never thought about it in the way he explained it. It went something like this: when you understand who Jesus is and what He has done for you, when you love Him and know that He is everything, nothing else really matters. These guys understood that! They saw and believed who He is. So when Jesus said, “don’t be afraid; from now on you will fish for people.” And they left everything behind… They weren’t really leaving much; they were leaving stinky fish to follow EVERYTHING. Because Jesus Christ is our EVERYTHING so anything else falls short and it’s just a bunch of stinky fish. It totally shook me and had me in tears. Everything else is simply stinky fish!

So, a couple of years ago God called us to open this organization (Little Changes International) and to make His name known, to take care of the poor and needy in order to glorify His name, to be the voice of those who are unseen and unheard, and sometimes even untouched. He called us to stand up for justice for his precious children around the world. We are a team of 7 people under 30 years of age. We all have different careers, skills and abilities, but we all have a love of Christ that drives us to love others and make a difference in this world.  But I must confess, it is hard, and sometimes I just want to run away and give up. Many times I feel like it is an uphill battle that has no ending. However, I am reminded that even when it feels like we take one step forward and twelve backwards, that He is indeed EVERYTHING and the other things that fight for my attention don’t really matter at all because He is behind us, supporting us and guiding us to glorify His name in all that we do. I am reminded that even when things seem impossible, we serve a mighty God that can do more than we can think or imagine, that He is the creator of the universe and in Him all things are possible. I find hope in that He is in control of it all… yes, He allowed us to partake in His plan but He doesn’t need us. He reminds us that we are here to glorify Him, not to save the world. So when He calls us to leave everything and follow Him, it is as simple as that. Don’t look back just drop everything and go.  So if you find yourself caught up today feeling like you just can’t let go of certain things that are holding you from being obedient to God’s call in your life, remember that anything else is just stinky fish because Christ is everything and we will be fully satisfied in Him – NOT in what we do for Him but simply in His gracious love for us. So be encouraged and grab on to Christ for dear life, don’t look to the right or to the left but keep those eyes on Him and He will lead the way.

Stinky fish y’all!

Stephany Moore is the secretary for Little Changes International. 

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1
Oct

Joyful Singing- Mozambique

Alex Moore is the president of Little Changes International and recently travelled to Mozambique to visit LCI’s Milk Project.  The following blog post captures his thoughts from the trip.

I recently had the opportunity to fly to Mozambique to see the progress of our Milk Project and get a report from our team there in the city of Beira and the small village of Manga where we have the clinic.  I was accompanied by Justin and Kirby Betancourt of Ambient Studios (Pearland, TX) who came to capture video of the clinic and photos of the surrounding areas.  The video for the Milk Project is coming out soon, and it is incredible!  They are so talented, and it was such a blessing to the team to have them there to show the wonderful work being done in Mozambique.

The Milk Project has a special place in my heart, because I saw the project in its infancy while living in Mozambique in 2011.  Soon thereafter, LCI became a nonprofit organization and the Milk Project was its first official project.  It had been almost three years since I had last visited, so I was excited to see familiar faces but somewhat worried to see how things had changed in that time.

The team showed up on Wednesday – a day before the weekly milk clinic on Thursday – to set up the film equipment for the following day.  The clinic is held in the same building since the beginning, but I was immediately struck by the growth in the surrounding neighborhood.  Manga, still a village on the outskirts of the larger Beira, has seen much population growth in a short amount of time. I met some of the families in the area and had some time to speak with Fatima, our R.N. who heads the local team there.

 

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The women wearing their best outfits, waiting for their babies to be seen.

 

The next morning, we showed up promptly at 9am for the milk clinic, only to hear the loud voices of women singing.  “They’ve been here for 30 minutes and they haven’t stopped singing!” our volunteer Catarina explained to us.  It was the mothers and caretakers who have children being helped by the clinic.  They wanted to make it clear to their American visitors how grateful they were for the clinic.  It was a powerful moment.  The rest of the day flew by.  Even though we have almost 40 babies each week, the clinic takes just about two hours.  Fatima spends personal time with each mother/caretaker to really assess how each baby is doing.  She takes the measurements and makes notes and Catarina passes out the week’s supply of milk.  The film team interviewed some of the women; some of them came from very difficult backgrounds, but what an encouragement to hear how Fatima and the rest of the LCI team invested in the life of the women and their babies!

 

 

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A mother and her children at the Milk Project

 

For the rest of our time, we were out in the community, meeting families who have been helped by the clinic.  It was amazing to see how much they respect Fatima and the work she does.  To them, she is the face of Little Changes. Multiple ladies told us that they had nothing when they showed up on the first day to the milk clinic.  This is where the Milk Project has advanced the most. Before, the Thursday morning clinic was the focal point of the project.  Now, it is the weekly family visits that have become the focus.  “This is how we can make the most impact,” Fatima informs me.  “Caring for the babies is more than just the milk.  I have to see the conditions and work with the women in a more holistic approach.

Before I left, I asked Fatima if she thought we were doing God’s work out here. Her reply summed it up so well.  “Yes, this is God’s work because we are doing what Jesus did.  He was in the community with the people and we are saving lives.  Maybe we aren’t doing it miraculously – raising the dead to life or causing the lame to walk again – but we are saving the lives of these babies.  Definitely God’s work here.

 

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A grandmother feeding her baby the formula

The New House
16
Apr

We Have a Home

We are thrilled to announce that we officially have a home in Armenia, Colombia. After months of searching for a home and being rejected several times, we finally were able to find a home for Sonia and all the children that live with her. It is so amazing to see how God works: although the other houses we looked at were all better and bigger than the place where Sonia lived, they do not compare to the house that God has provided! This house has more rooms, giving us enough space to put several bunk beds in each room, it also has lots of closet space so that the children will be able to store their belongings! The kitchen is much bigger, providing plenty of room for the meals that feed hundreds of kids, and the living room is big enough for these kids to finally eat together! There are also several showers and bathrooms and it even has a small terrace to perhaps plant a couple of things.

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The New House

We are so excited to finally be able to use what God’s provision!  We are in the process of buying furniture, and even getting some of it made so that it fits perfectly in the space that we have been given. What an amazing opportunity it is to be able to share this with all the people that have participated in making this possible, not only through giving but also the many prayers that have been lifted up. So, thank you again and please continue to pray for Seeds of Hope. It is an on going project and there is so much to be done!

 


An update on Seeds of Hope

We are so grateful for all the people who came out and supported us during the Bingo night. What a blessing it was to see so many people gathered together to have fun, but also to put our hearts together for this beautiful cause in Armenia, Colombia. The turnout was amazing, we were able to meet our goal and it was definitely a lot of fun!

Unfortunately, things are not always very easy when it comes with working with different countries. The government of Colombia has made it a little difficult for us to find a home for these children since their requirements are very specific and very hard to find, especially in a city like Armenia. We have been looking for a home, and we have made it to the closing stage twice, but then circumstances outside our control have caused the deals to fall through.  I feel like part of this is that we are indeed in a spiritual warfare and when the enemy sees that we, the kingdom of God, want to make things happen, there are always going to be attacks. However, we are not giving up and we know that God is preparing something amazing for these children. Our dream for this project is to be able to build a place that meets all the qualifications the government is asking for, and we are working to see things happen. We would like to invite you to pray with us to be able to find land that would be in a safe location for these children and that we would be able to build them a place that they could call home.

All of the money that was raised at the bingo night is still intact and waiting to be spent on furniture and supplies for the children.  We have identified a local supplier so that we will be able to furnish the future home as soon as possible.  We are so excited to be able to do this for the children. What a magnificent blessing it would be for them to have their own beds, forks, plates, etc. We look forward to the day when we can place all the pieces of this puzzle together. For now we ask that you would fervently pray for their safety, their health, and the healing they have to go through to overcome all the things that they have gone through. Thank you so much for being a part of our movement with Little Changes International.

 

 

 


Seeds of Hope

Armenia, Colombia: Seeds of Hope

We are so excited to introduce to you our new project! We have recently been given the opportunity to partner up with a Colombian organization to help stop a vicious cycle of child abuse, labor and homelessness in Armenia, Colombia.

In Armenia, it is not rare to find children asking for money out on the streets, or to see them working odd jobs for very little pay. In this particular city many children are forced to work in order to provide for their families. Many of these families are made up of women who are slaves to the sex industry and/or addicted to drugs. The fathers of these children, who are more than likely not involved, are also addicted to drugs and usually struggle with alcoholism.  Most of these homes are unstable and present a very violent and dangerous environment in which the children are in most cases responsible for the well being of the entire family. These children are forced to leave school and go to the streets, leaving their innocence behind as they are victims of abuse, drugs, violence, and often abandonment from their own family.

Little Changes International wants to make it possible for this cycle to stop. We want to be the voice for those who are not heard. We want people to know that these precious children who are on the streets are not there because they chose to leave their wonderful life, but because unfortunately they don’t have families who will fight for them. Little Changes International wants to give these children an opportunity at life. We want them to be educated, to be healthy, and most of all to know what it feels like to be loved. We want to help Sonia with a home that will house 25 children who have been left to mend for themselves – a home for these children who have been through it all and are ready to move on with life.

However, this house will serve for more than just a home for these children. Some of our goals for this house are: for children to be reinstalled back in school, to host 150 children that will be fed nutritious meals on a daily basis, to provide counseling in order for them to cope with their traumatic experiences, to provide after-school activities, to provide medical care and drug rehabilitation, and to provide edification through the Word of God. Lastly, this home will also host “preventative schools” for children at risk, and for children who are already attending school but need extra support.

Please help us make this project possible by praying for each of the children that will live in this home, and for those who will be involved with any of our projects. You can also help us by donating whatever you can to Little Changes International. You can find how to donate by going to get involved tab on our website. Your donation for this project will go directly to help pay for this home and everything that is needed in order to reach our goals.


Website Launch

We are proud to announce that Little Changes International is now online!  We will be adding content with blog posts, missions projects, media, and more.  See ‘get involved’ to help out the cause!