Ghana (MNN) — Over the weekend, dozens of Ghanaian children danced, sang songs, and recited Scripture in excitement over the 10-year anniversary of Every Child Ministries Haven of Hope.
Haven of Hope was created by ECM in response to the evident need for children in crisis to have a roof over their heads. They saw some kids whose parents just weren't in a spot to care for their kids. They saw others who were orphaned, some as a result of slavery. So in 2002, ECM created a place for these children to find solace: Haven of Hope orphanage.
Ten years later, the basic principle of taking care of kids is still Haven of Hope's emphasis.
"It is a home where Christians take in kids who don't have a home, share a home together with them and try to help those children regain their lives. Of course, that can only be done through the power of Jesus," explains ECM's Lorella Rouster.
Ten years after the first building went up, Rouster says she couldn't have imagined all God has done to expand the ministry. Not only have dozens of kids come to Christ through the orphan care, but ECM was able to expand their ministry to include another residence home and a well-equipped school.
Haven Academy opened in 2005 to meet the special schooling needs of the Haven of Hope children, many of whom have fallen behind in school or have had no schooling background at all due to their difficult circumstances.
At the 10-year mark, says Rouster, "We have 56 children in residence. We have two in higher training, who are there on weekends and holidays. Then we have 200 children from the community in a day school there."
As Haven of Hope and Haven Academy have grown so much in the last 10 years, they have also gained the respect and dependence of the local government. The State Department now knows to send children in crisis to Haven of Hope when they need a home. It's just one more way the Lord is drawing children into relationship with Him.
Rouster says her biggest prayer for the ministry is that kids would truly grasp the depth of a relationship with Christ while under ECM's care. Many have done so.
The operational costs of all of this work over the years has been funded largely through child sponsorship. For just $32 a month, you can support and get to know a child through letters and reports. To celebrate Haven of Hope's 10-year anniversary by beginning a sponsorship, click here.