Tuesday, February 4, 2014


My Month at IT Tender
By David Shields

I’m currently studying Theology at Belfast Bible College in Northern Ireland, but over the month of January I have been a volunteer at IT Tender. I came here as part of my experience in study, choosing to volunteer at IT Tender mostly because it would lead me literally to the other side of the planet, into the unknown and out of my comfort zone.

I have been so blessed in the 4 short weeks I have spent here in Manila and I’ve been taught so much about service, humility, fellowship and vision. Unfortunately I can’t cover all of my experiences in this one article, but I’ll try and sum it up. In all the ministries I have been so amazed by the children; their joy, thankfulness and incredible amounts of energy. It brought me such joy to serve these children and I learnt so much by observing how the IT Tender staff interacts within the communities that they are part of, and the team’s incredible desire to see the well-being of these communities developed.

Overall my time in the Philippines has been incredible and enlightening. The Filipino people I have had the honor of meeting are so kind, hospitable and patient with my very basic language skills, and the team here are inspiring and faithful servants of Christ. I’m excited to take home what I have learnt to start serving in my own community once more!

Food For Life: two month update
By Karin Jose

Despite some minor complications of lack of electricity and clashing schedules with aerobics classes, we have had such a great response from the children and parents on the feeding program since we launched in November 2013. The majority of the children are regularly attending and very much enjoying the food and activities we run. The children love playing games, singing songs, learning about Jesus through stories and are especially excited when they get the opportunity to do crafts. Food For Life has been blessed with many short-term visitors over the past few weeks who have been a fantastic help and who the children love! Food For Life is definitely a program where the more hands and happy faces helping the better!
Sharing the Christmas Story
We are thankful to God that already after only 2 months we have seen children put on weight, and in particular some of the younger girls who had skin issues due to lack of vitamins are looking a lot healthier.

Please continue to pray for the Food For Life team as we start to plan events such as nutrition and cooking seminars that will benefit the parents. We would also appreciate prayers that we are able to maintain good relationships with the various members of the local community that we come into contact with through Food For Life, and that they are able to see the hope of Christ and not just the physical assistance provided through the program.

Things we are thankful for:
·         The safe return of IT Tender Director, John Coffey, and that he was able to spend Christmas and New Year at ‘home’ with his family in Canada

·         The visit of David Shields from Northern Ireland who was with us for the month of January. His visit was a huge blessing and encouragement to the staff and all the children and youth we work with

·         The safe arrival of Janne and Martin Rask who are working with IT Tender until July 2014. Janne is a trainee social worker and Martin is completing a Masters in International Business. We are excited about both Janne and Martin’s contributions to our team and ministries

Things we would love you to pray for:
·         The health of full time volunteer Cecille DeJesus as she continues her on-going medication in preparation for surgery. Please also pray we are able to raise the additional funds required for her surgery and recovery period. We are still in need of approx. 25,00 PHP / $550 USD / £350 GBP

·         Benefits for our full time Filipino volunteers. The cost of the most basic benefit plan (with health and retirement benefits) for our workers is only around $7.50 USD monthly. We are praying for more monthly donors of IT Tender so that we can include in the Tender budget benefits for four workers

·         The upcoming seminar for the parents of children on the Food For Life program. We have connected with the local health center who will be leading training on nutrition and family planning

·         Preparation for our ‘Family Day’ that will be taking place later this year – we will be taking our clients and their families swimming (more details to follow!)

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