As we are about to begin year number four of Panaghia’s Pantry this is how it all started and how extensions have been added to this beautiful Ministry.
When the Pandemic struck the entire world Vasili and I wanted to help those less fortunate in our area with nutrition. It was not much but we did what we were able to do. We reached out to our friend Alfonso who’s family also struggles but he has a vehicle and we asked if he would be willing to take us to deliver food, he said yes so we delivered several times in April and May. What we discovered was that the need has always been here but the pandemic just made things much more difficult.
In a zoom call with Father Evan, Nancy Constantine, and Maria Tschetter this incredible Philoptochos Ministry began. Father suggested Panaghia’s Pantry and within a few days money was sent and on May 26, 2020 what soon became Team Ecuador delivered its first food kits. Since that first delivery 11,790 food kits have been delivered equalling 49.25 tons of food.
Other needs were seen on our journey from village to village and two extensions have been added, Panaghia’s Housing which has given the ability to families to have shelter from the elements. In January of 2022 was project #1, a complete construction of a house for a family who was living on the dirt of their property with only plastic and bags sewn together in an attempt to keep them warm and dry from the elements. Roofing material was donated by a couple here who were replacing the roof of their home.
Project #2 was the purchase of material for a cement floor and the bamboo to hold a roof, the roofing was also donated.
Project #3 is still in progress the father is doing all the work himself as he can but the family of 9 is in one small room that shelters them as they complete the project. The bamboo house they were living in collapsed when they were putting the roof on the room they are now living in. It was a blessing they had a place to sleep.
Project #4, a complete house build that was started the first of April 2023, with the help of family and friends, men, women, and even children working non stop the project is almost completed. Donations of used windows, doors and countertops, and even some used furnishings have been donated here for this project. The family will now have a house to live in. They are a family of 4 and have been sleeping in a bamboo structure on stilts. Their cooking, eating and social area is under this structure on a small cement slab and they have an outside bathroom that they have to walk to even if it's pouring rain. That bathroom will now have an entrance from the new construction.
Project #5 has been projected but has not yet begun.
Panaghia’s Outreach is the other extension to help with emergency medical needs. Insurance is not something that is affordable for people to have here. There is the public health system but it does not cover much of anything, sadly if they need a test or to see a Dr. they have to pay cash and most can not afford it.
The first Outreach was to give some medical assistance to a family who's 17 year old son needed life saving surgery. He is doing well.
There is also a current need as well, tests, doctor’s visits and hopefully a diagnosis to come soon.
This beautiful Ministry and its extensions will begin year number 4 on May 26th.
With the Blessing of The Lord, your continued prayers, generosity, and Panaghia’s Pantry Team Loveland Team Ecuador will continue to reach out to those less fortunate. You have all touched the lives of so very many, we see tears, we hear that prayers have been answered and we see and feel the gratitude for all that do and give to make this help possible. Thank you from us and from all of those whose lives you’ve touched.
Love in Christ
Yota, Vasili and all of Team Ecuador
If you would like to donate to any of the 3 Panaghia's Pantry missions (Pantry, Housing, Outreach) you can do so via the Poor Box or online HERE. Please designate where you would like it to go. We are so thankful for any and all donations. Panaghia's Housing is in the greatest need at this time to help us complete the projects.
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