Wow! Much has happened since our last blog entry and all of it exciting. At the end of September we had our most successful participation yet in the annual Ride for Refuge. We exceeded our fundraising goal with two teams on the road in Waterloo and Parry Sound, Ontario. We are so grateful for the riders and the many who supported them. We are also thankful for a safe and fun ride for all. I was personally energized by our youngest team member, Jack, who, at the tender age of 3, tackled the entire 10km route under the power of his own legs on his balance bike. Amazing!
More excitement stirred at the Skylark Centre in early October when, after five months, we began to see the return of local Nicaraguan users. Youth camps, leader retreats, couples retreats - local Christian groups are coming back and we anticipate one of our busiest Decembers on record.
We continue to pray and plan for the return of teams from Canada and the USA. Since April, there have been travel advisories in effect advising against non-essential travel. The advisories are still in place but we are working to find ways to enable people to travel safely. I plan to travel to Nicaragua early in the New Year to consider the situation first hand.
Our Skylark team has been conducting new training programs in English, electricity, and baking while continuing with the pre-existing “Best Start in Christ” programming. The generosity of donors has allowed the staff to keep busy doing more extensive maintenance at the centre so that it is in the best shape possible to receive returning guests.
We thank you wholeheartedly for your support both in prayers and in gifts. We are immensely grateful for you, during what has been a very challenging year.