Bishop Judith Craig Children’s Village was established to give hope to the children who were left destitute after the 14 years of destruction in our country. It is headed by the director, a financial officer or business manager, care-givers, one registered nurse and two securities. Presently, there are 65 children, 45 girls and 27 boys. Five of these children are in the senior class at the Booker Washington Institute (BWI), while the rest of them stay at the Village.
Activities: We began the day with devotion in the cottages in the morning and end with evening devotion in the multipurpose building. We have worship service on Sunday. Our clean-up day is Saturday of every week. The older girls help to cook in their cottages.
Achievements: We are grateful to God and our people of Peachtree City UMC, who have helped us to fence the entire Village. They have installed swing, basketball board with metal and painted it. The multipurpose building which once carried mats around its wall has been raised with blocks. Most importantly, the School at the Village, under the leadership of Mr. H. Nagbe Botoe had her first graduation, 47 students were graduated in the presence of our dear Bishop, Rev. Dr. John Innis, Rev. Dr. Emmanuel Bailey and Rev. Dr. Steven Dodson, Senior Pastor of the Peachtree UMC, who served as Guest Speaker. 51 students sat for WAEC, 48 successfully passed. We want to thank the principal and the teaching staff for the job well done. We are also expecting 5 (4 girls and 1 boy) of the Village children at BWI to graduate on August 31, 2013.
Church: The Church, under the leadership of Charles W. Fiske and his associate, Pastor J. Shedrach Nimely are doing well. We attend Bible study every Tuesday and prayer meeting every Friday. The foundation of the new Church has completed. The wall has been raised and the floor upstairs is casted. We are thankful to the building committee chaired by Rev. J. Emmanuel Giddings.
Gifts: In April 2013, we received assorted items from Don Valley Club of Old Road, headed by Bro. Nathaniel Trokon Pritchard. In July 2013, the Deaconesses of Monrovia brought 25kg rice, soap, candies, cholera, slippers and D.S. Kulah brought some clothes and distributed them among the children. We also received rice from Bunny Wolfe Team, headed by Frank. On 30th of October 2013, a section of the 12th grade class of J.J. Roberts High School visited the Village, headed by Mth. Richlain Quire and donated two boxes of 25kg fortified rice, soap and Argo oil. On December 14, 2013, Pastors’ Wives Association, headed by Mth. Irene Innis donated to the children clothes, toothpastes, hair grease, and toys. Friday, December 20, 2013, we also received 8 bags 25kg rice and one cartoon of fish as Christmas gifts from the President of Liberia. On December 29, 2013, Dr. and Lynn Gray gave some used clothing for the children and US$300.00. Thank God for these wonderful brothers and sisters for their gifts.
Visiting Team: During the year under review, we received two teams from Peachtree City UMC. First team 14 members arrived the 2nd day of June, 2013. They repaired the screens on the windows of the cottages and left June 11, 2013. The 2nd team of 9 members, headed by Joey Davidson arrived July 26, 2013. They fixed two swings for the children and worked on the fence.
Challenges Our challenges are enormous; the present one is salary of our workers. The Village is indebted to its employees for about 5 months. We also need food for the children. Those who are 18 and above are giving us problems, some escaped and sleep out, which is very, very dangerous.
Finance For the year under review, our Proposed Budget was $122,680.00. We received $74,430.01. As the result of the less income, the Village is indebted to its employees for 5 months (August to December 2013), which amounted to $10,080.00. Due to this drastic drop in our Income, we proposed $116,000.00 for 2014.
Note: In addition to the $35,525 contributed by Peachtree City United Methodist Church, Peachtree UMC also contributed $6,000.00 to the Harriett E. Bailey School, making Peachtree total contributions to the Village and School $41,626.00.
Attached are our 2013 Budget Performance and Proposed Budget for 2014.
Commendations We are grateful to God for bringing us this far. We want to thank Bishop Innis for the confidence he continues to have in us to serve our people. We also thank Dr. Emmanuel Bailey for his support to the Village. Thanks to Peachtree City UMC and Michigan Conference for their financial and moral support. Our special thanks to the President of Liberia and others for their support in kind. We also want to thank our staff, my family, and the Children of the Village and all those who helped us to come thus far.
May God continue to bless and guide us as we labor in the Master’s vineyard.
Rev. William N. Sonwabe