Stories from the field: Journal entry #1
I have recently learned that heroes come in all shapes and sizes. Many times it is an unassuming personality that makes the most impact. As I sat in a coffee shop in Manila with my new friend “Peter”, I realized I was sitting with one of these quiet heroes.
In the heard of a militant Islamic culture, “Peter” and his team are rescuing children and changing their lives. He explained to us “We have 40 child soldiers in our rescue program, but could have 60 more over the next two years if the planning and funding were in place.” I was inspired by his humility and his realistic approach to this difficult environment. This is the type of leader that can make long-term change in a culture.
“Peter” went on to talk about his grass-roots approach. His team gathers with the kids in small groups in local huts so not to provoke local Islamic leaders. He also spoke of feeding 75 needy families for Christmas. He hopes this approach will help create leaders in the area who can mediate tribal and cultural issues and lead the people through future hard times. Throughout our coffee meeting, my heart was renewed by the stories of hope, redemption, and lives being changed by this man’s work.
Lassar's mother left the family when he was 5 months old. Shortly after, at the tender age of one, his father died in a car accident. His aunt cared for him, but as an orphan, he defaulted into military training as a child. This took place in the main militia camp near his home. Here he learned to use high-powered firearms and kill mercilessly. Now, thanks to “Peter’s” hard work and the programs offered in our schools, Lassar’s story is being rewritten. Lassar now dreams of being a policeman and serving his community.
Without you, these transforming stories could not be told! Your dedication to a world that exists beyond your immediate culture has made a lasting impact on people you may never meet. Thank you for serving a vision that is bigger than yourself! Together we are changing lives and pointing this world towards peace and hope!
As the year draws to a close, will you help us lay the groundwork necessary to help “Peter” reach 60 more children over the next year? With your financial help and support, we can make a greater difference in the lives of these children. Help us equip this hero with the tools necessary to change the world in which he lives.
Click here to donate to Peter's cause!
Marcus and the PAK47 Team