On March 19th a family arrived at Baudis family's home asking if Panaghia’s Pantry would be able to bring food aid to 6 small communities traveling inland on dirt roads and over small bodies of water to get there, they would organize a truck and volunteers to help us deliver.
Team Ecuador all agreed we could and should do it knowing when they ask for help they truly need the help.
These were areas new to us, we had never been before.
On the 20th we had the product delivered, not certain what day we would go but needed to be ready. It would be a triple delivery that would help 255 families. On the 24th Team Ecuador gathered and we prepared the kits at our house.
It was arranged so we would leave between 8:00 and 8:30 on Saturday morning. The chicken arrived at 7:45. When the truck and 6 volunteers arrived we loaded everything and left at 8:30. We were a bit nervous because there were heavy rain warnings and there were dark clouds around us.
Getting to the first village took us 2 hours. The roads were very muddy in places with large puddles of water and areas where some of the road had washed out. We went up hills and down hills and the clouds continued to get darker around us.
On the side of the road Vasili spotted a calf in a canal full of water trying to get out with its mama and twin standing and watching. The calf was in distress and crying, we stopped and Vasili and a couple of the volunteers were finally able to get a strap around its neck and pull it out. The mother had stood back and let them do what they had to, she mooed once after the calf came to her. What a feeling! (View Video Here)
We arrived at the first village and everyone came to us for distribution. It would have taken too long to go house to house because these villages are very rural and the houses are spread out. The lady that organized this day knows the families of the villages so if someone came who had a family member that had gotten their bag to give them she was able to tell them and we had no repeats.
We traveled on to 4 more villages and the people lined up patiently in each one waiting for their turn to receive. Older seniors walking, some with help and even 1 older senior lady on the back of a motorcycle.
In the last village the rain decided to give us a shower, it started to come down pretty good so we knew we’d have to finish and head out but it did not last long.
Those who received were so very grateful and thankful, wishing blessings to be multiplied for those who make this help possible!
We were barely out of the village in the middle of nowhere when Baudis' car started sounding funny and it stalled, it was a belt on the engine. Baudi and Vasili pulled at the loose ends of the belt making it very narrow but the car finally started and we prayed we’d get home.
Yesterday he drove to the mechanic who is 45 minutes away. The mechanic could not believe he was able to drive it anywhere.
We are so thankful to God as he continues to guide us in the amazing ministry getting us home safely and getting Baudi where he needed to go safely.
He and his family are incredible, dedicated volunteers who never say no and never ask for anything. They have been a huge part of Panaghia’s Pantry since the very first day almost 3 years ago. Without him being the transportation it wouldn’t be possible! They are Team Ecuador and an example of what Philoptochos is all about!
At 4:00 we were home safe, dry, exhausted, and grateful for the day that all of you who pray for this ministry, all the wonderful donors of this Ministry who make it all possible, and for Team Loveland for all their dedication and hard work.
We will go again next week with the extra help and truck to finish what we couldn’t on Sunday.
Love in Christ,
Click below to see more photos.