Meet Lydia

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The petite Lydia, living in one with our orphanage partner in Yetebon, Ethiopia can be seen running with joy into the open arms of the staff, confident she will be caught, hugged, and loved. However, this joy and confidence are products of several years of constant care and provision for her basic needs. Lydia was abandoned as an infant by her teenage mother, pushed through a hedge of thorn bushes (2” thorns!) onto the back area of the children’s home where a staff member found her. She would often have nightmares as a result of the physical and emotional pain of her abandonment. In time, healing began and her ability to trust was restored. She has lots of energy, loves to play with all the children, and her smile is evidence of the importance of provision, protection, instruction and affection in the life of a child. 


A surprise find in the middle of the road

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Not everyone who sees something in the middle of the road bothers to stop or even swerve to miss it. However, in South Africa, a police officer who swerved to miss hitting a small paper bag thought for just a moment he heard a sound coming from it. He stopped to investigate and inside the bag he found 3-month-old Katlego. Katlego had welts on his cheek, eyelid and forehead… apparently from a near miss of someone’s wheel.

Katlego is now safe and sound at one of our partner homes, The Havens. The staff at The Havens go to great lengths to care for children who are abandoned in a myriad of locations,. For them, as well as for us, it’s unfathomable that someone wanted this beautiful bright-eyed boy to die that day. We are certain of this: Katlego is a gift to the world and has a bright future ahead of him now. He is now loved, cared for and enjoying a happy life! He will not have to wait long for an adoptive family who will rejoice in him, just as much as the staff of The Havens and Rice Bowls do now!


Atla’s stories were all true

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Alta’s stories were so incredible when she was young that the African Haven’s staff consulted a professional, asking how to handle a child who makes up stories. The staff could hardly believe the counselor’s verdict: the stories were all true. 

Many of the stories centered around her life in the slums living with her alcoholic mother, the violence and murders she personally witnessed within her own family, and her experiences with a stalker. Police records verified it all. 

Eleven years have passed and Alta, now adopted into a loving family, is eighteen and graduating from high school next year. Her nightmares have finally stopped. Today she writes of her gratitude for God’s love for her and for His favor on her life. Alta enjoys singing and styling hair, she never meets a stranger and has become quite the leader while her story continues. 


Meet Peter, the School Prefect

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                                                                                                                                                                                                      Peter was abandoned as a baby and taken in by a social worker. Peter has never known his biological family. Fortunately, he was placed in the home of one of our orphanage partners in South Africa. After years of receiving protection, provision, instruction and affection, Peter is thriving as a teenager. The other children look up to him and his teachers have named him School Head Prefect (Leader). This is an amazing achievement after overcoming so many obstacles early in life. He loves to play the guitar and assist with the youth program at his church, where he has accepted an internship next year. He’s often seen serving others and is quite the chef in the kitchen. iThemba, the home where he lives, means “Hope”. Young men like Peter are “Hope” personified.


Meet Nanditha & Nandini

Nanditha and Nandini were born to a woman from an isolated village in Gulbarga, India. Their mother was extremely poor and was forced to work the streets to provide one meal a day. In 2013 she and her children were rescued from this lifestyle.

Unforunately, their mother is currently in the final stage of HIV/AIDS. By God’s grace, the doctors have confirmed that Nandini and Nanditha are healthy. Their mother’s greatest desire is for her children to continue to be cared for, loved on, fed, and given the opportunity for an education. Today Nandini and Nanditha are going to school, getting three meals a day, and are happy - enjoying their life in one of our partner children’s homes. Their mother’s hope for them is a reality today because you give BIG.


Give. Go.

He’s A Go Giver!

Tony is from Sacramento, California.  He’s a Giver of Yum.  He’s also a Go Giver.  

What’s a Go Giver, you ask?

Tony has been a supporter of many non-profit organizations over the years.  But at the top of his list? - Rice Bowls!  Tony tells us he, “whole-heartedly supports the mission and the work Rice Bowls does in serving orphaned children”.  

After being a Giver of Yum, Tony made the leap to Go Giver by joining us on a trip to Haiti in September 2011.  On that trip, Tony got to see, firsthand, the love and passion Rice Bowls provides through our partner homes.  ”The way they interact with both children and the orphanage directors is intentional, genuine and inspirational,” says Tony.  The 2011 trip had a profound impact on Tony.  Since then, he’s also joined us on other visits to Nicaragua, Philippines and South Africa!

Throughout every trip, Tony tells us he heard a consistent message of changed lives and gratitude.  Tony has become an ambassador of sorts, encouraging others to partner with Rice Bowls and to consider joining a Go Give Yum trip.  Tony sums it up like this.  ”You will be blessed, but more importantly, you will significantly impact the lives of some fantastic kids!”

Give. Go.

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Feeding Future Leaders

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At it’s core, Rice Bowls provides delicious meals to over 1700 children who are growing up in safe, loving partner homes.  But consider this: the YUM you help provide feeds future leaders! 
 
That’s right. Leaders.
 
Strong and positive are two words used to describe Peaceful, a young girl who found herself suddenly responsible for her younger siblings.  They had lost their parents to HIV/AIDS, were on their own, and struggled every day just to make it.  Now add ‘courageous’ to the list of words that describe Peaceful.
 
Fortunately, Peaceful and her siblings found a safe haven in one of our partner homes in South Africa.  They no longer had to worry about where they’d find their next meal or staying safe.
 
The young family thrived.
 
Peaceful has grown up, gone to school and is now a leader in her community.  She’s making sure orphaned children get a chance to grow up strong and positive, just like she did.
 
Join us in the fight to Feed Future Leaders!

Masters in Public Service + Passion for Orphans + Worldwide Missions Traveler = Rice Bowls Intern

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          You don’t even have to be good at math to figure this one out.

The answer is Allison!

Allison just finished her masters degree studies in Public Service, with an emphasis in Non-Profit Management.  Combine that with her service to the poor and hungry around the world and you have an equation for tons of positive impact!  As the latest addition to our volunteer internship program, Allison will be able to pursue her passion to help others see and understand the orphan crisis.  She’ll also add tremendous depth to Rice Bowls special projects like grant writing, new fundraising strategies and preparing press releases.

We’re super excited to add Allison to our team as we subtract hunger from the world - one child at a time!


A Series of Small Things

A Ten-Bowl Challenge. That’s what Paul Mallory (Arlington, TX) set out to accomplish in December of last year. He challenged 9 other families to join him in providing YUM for as many kids as possible.  Before long, these families were jumping on board. When it was all said and done, nearly 20 families took part in his Rice Bowls Family Challenge. Paul captured some thoughts from 3 families who participated:

 “We started putting our loose change in the bowl at the end of the day. For us, since we don’t have kids, it was nice knowing that something so “insignificant” to us, something we really take for granted, and most of the time don’t even count in our “cash on hand,” means life for another human being.”

“My girls are so funny - they didn’t even know what we did! Putting spare change

in a bowl was such an easy way to give and it went unnoticed until we filled our bowl. It was neat to tell them it was enough money to feed someone for quite a while. It’s amazing how an insignificant thing to us can become quite significant when done with others.”

“The challenge was a great project for our family! It made us think about our “change” in a whole new way, and it prompted some wonderful conversations with our two boys. It was just another real-life example for us, and provided some teachable moments. The kids were amazed that something so simple – some loose change, a few coins or dollar bills that just sit around or get tossed somewhere, could actually be used to feed a hungry child. Unfortunately, we take all of those things for granted much too often. Something small (or someone small for that matter) can make a big, big difference and that’s not small at all!”

 In the end, Paul’s Rice Bowls Family Challenge raised enough money one orphaned child for 11 months! That’s nearly a year!  Family Challenges are a great way to support Rice Bowls. They offer the opportunity for families to talk about how seemingly small things can deliver in big ways. So, why not order 10 bowls, invite 9 families to join you and get started on the next series of small things brought together?


Meet Nishmitha


                                                                                                                                                                      Her favorite flower is the sunflower. And just look at that face. It’s as bright and beautiful as any flower on the planet! Nishmitha is an active 5 year-old who dreams of one day becoming a doctor. She lives at one of our partner homes in Bangalore, India. Because of the loving care and nutritious food she receives every day, Nishmitha’s dream may one day come true. Instead of dealing with the harsh realities so many other orphaned children face, her days are filled with learning, laughing, loving, and following her dreams - just like the sunflower follows the sun as its makes it path across the sky.

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