2008 Projects

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Monday after work, a cold (Being from Minnesota, I would call it more of a cool front) came through this morning and it is quite delightful right now. We have been able to open the motor home and have a really nice breeze blowing through.

Some more pictures to help you understand what we are doing.

Jenny had the opportunity to teach by presenting to the 3rd-6th grades during their individual science classes on the subject of animal nursing.  Jenny was able to show the kids slides of blood cells and x-rays of cats & dogs. Our cat Suppy was the live model too.

Jan, Sharon and Jenny cleaning one of the school buses.

Already 3rd Week at Community Church


We are beginning our third week here at Islamorado Community Church and School.  Island Christian School is the only Christian school in the Keys.  They provide a pre-school through 12 program.

Jenny in front of the school building after a bike ride to the local post office.


As usual,  the tasks are many and with lots of variety.  We started out reassembling four (4) storage sheds that had been dismantled by a previous SOWERS group. The school is readying to build a new gymnasium causing the move.

Gerry, Bob, and Al cleaning the old shed parts for reassembly.

Off to get another load of shed parts.

Group lunch after church.



More later.  Off to group devotional and work.

Thank you for your interest, your prayers and your support.

Love, Jenny and Don

March 15, 2008

SOWERS Reunion Vero Beach


We left HEART on Thursday, February 20, to go back to Life for Youth Camp in Vero Beach for the 2008 Reunion of Sowers.  This was our first reunion and we didn’t know what to expect.  The reunion is a time of renewal for SOWERS.  There were about 140 SOWERS attending.  The schedule was full with devotional/bible study sessions led by three different pastors, break out prayer sessions, seminars(how to work with paperless drywall, etc), and meals together with a lots of great fellowship.  Jenny and I really enjoyed the time.

We volunteered to serve at the Annual Vero Beach Prayer Breakfast with 1200+ people present.  It was another great experience.


Some of the SOWERS that helped serve.

We left right after this picture was taken and left for our next assignment, caravaning with another couple, Gerry and Phyllis DeJong, on our way to Community Church and School of Ilsamorado, FL.

Thanks for your interest, your prayers and your support.

God bless you and yours,

Don and Jenny

February 18, 2008

HEART Beginning Week Three

We began our third week here at HEART today.  It has been awesome and we both believe so strongly in what HEART does for students.


Kitchen where students learn to cook and eat their meals.  This is the building that we re-tiled the back room last week.

One of the bath rooms on the edge of the village.

Taken after one of our morning devotionals with the whole group plus Dave and Eileen from the HEART staff.

Jenny, Margaret, Beryl and Barb thached the garden house, the rabbit hut, the fencing shed, and one of the latrines as one of their jobs.  Here is a picture of Jenny and Barb gathering fronds for the job.

Beryl and Margaret gathering.


Margaret, Jenny, and Barb pausing during the thatching process for a photo op.

Arch and Don put in a water line.  Shown here as they dig in the trench for the line.

We are tearing out one of the goat pastures old fences and replaceing it with new.  Part of the job is to clear the line of the palmetto trees that seem to take over.  Arch, Bob and Don pulling and hauling junk growth to the burn pile.

Lester and Don back at the RV hoping for some lunch but wives won’t let them come in to the RV.  Would you let them into your home?

Lester and Don back at the RV hoping for some lunch but wives won’t let them come in to the RV.  Would you let them into your home?

Here is the whole bunch of us gathered after attending church.  Arch and Margaret from New Brunswick -Bob and Beryl from Massachusetts, Jenny and Don Minnnesota, and Lester and Barbara from Michigan.

Thank you for your support in helping us to be able to be here to do this thing.  Thank you for your prayers.  Please continue to pray for us to be safe and healthy and that what we do bring glory to God.

God bless you and yours,

Don and Jenny

February 09, 2008

HEART Week One

We have finished our first week of work at HEART.

There is a Church of God on the college campus that had an overstuffed garage filled with old stage props, tables and miscellaneous things that could be used by the Village.  We moved the items to the Care Center (another SOWER project) Thrift Store, to a  start-up Haitian church and the rest to the Village.  The structures where then disassembled and the lumber pieces stored in their cataloged spaces.

The women continued the task of cleaning cabins, offices and class rooms.


Dr. Ratzlaff and Don sorting out screws, bolts, hinges, etc. from the disassembled stuff.  Dr. Leslie Ratzlaff is nearly 93 years old and works with us every day.  He is the founder Warner Southern College from which HEART got its beginnings.

Arch and Don are replacing part of the flooring in the dining hall kitchen.


Shot of the dining hall from the work area.

Front of the dining hall.

The outdoor cooking area. The bricks you see were made by students while in class at the Village.

Bob and Lester (Sowers – on the left) repaired several chain saws as one of their tasks.  Pictured with them are Phil, Associate Director of HEART and Dave, the Village Manager.

Thank you for your interest, your prayers and your support as we move into the second week here at HEART.

God bless you and yours,

Don and Jenny

February 04, 2008

We are at H.E.A.R.T. www.warner.edu/heart our February assignment for SOWERS   (www.sowersministry.com ).

We are working with three other couples here.

H.E.A.R.T. –Hunger Education And Resource Training is a part of Warner Southern College located six miles south of Lake Wales FL which is SW of Orlando.

This location is a training grounds for missionaries planning on serving in under-developed countries.  After our devotions this morning, the director of the camp gave us a tour. It is absolutely fascinating how they teach the students by having them experience the “Village” way of living, from building a water supply system to how to raise and process of their food sources.

As you might imagine, Jenny has gravitated to the animals and has become the volunteer animal care person.  Go figure!

Jenny feeding some of the goats.


Jenny feeding more goats.

Jenny feeding the rabbits.

Jenny feeding a wild sand crane who likes to hang around the goats at feeding time.

One of the “rustic” cabins that Jenny, Margaret, Beryl and Barbara will be cleaning while we are here.  The ladies were warned to make sure they were careful and watch out for spiders and snakes as they moved mattresses and such.  Very “rustic” indeed.

It is very much jungle-like here.  Arch, Lester, Bob and I spent the first day in the beginning of the task of clearing a six foot path on both sides of the property border fence.  I will send pictures later when I have a little more energy than I have tonight..

The opportunity to spend time and energy in helping an organization like HEART is rewarding beyond our wildest thoughts. Thank you for your interest and support.

God’s blessing to you and yours,

Don and Jenny


January 26, 2008

Life For Youth Camp

We had a great experience at LFYC.  It was an exceptional bunch of workers that accomplished a bunch of tasks.

A letter of thanks from the camp Directors:

In addition to the things listed in the above letter, Elmer, Bob and Steve, finished the framing of a large aviary.

Ken, Bob, Dave and I tore out a 8X10 walk-in freezer.  There was two and 1/2 dump-truck loads of nasty materials removed.  We did get to start the reconstruction which was very rewarding.

The crew of fourteen couples were wonderful and great to work worth and an absolute privilege to get to know.  Friends for life for sure.

All of us at the local ice cream parlor.

We left our first 2008 project, Life For Youth Camp, 9:30 AM on Friday 63 degrees and blue skies.  We are sad to leave our new friends we have been working shoulder to shoulder with since January 4th.  We joined in a prayer circle at 7:30 AM to ask God’s blessings on each other and our travels to the next projects. What a great experience it has been.

Thanks for your prayers and your support.

God bless you and yours,

Don and Jenny