By Andy Baker
When my friend, Mircea Toca, called me three years ago, I never dreamed that the vision he had for family homes in Tanzania would “take off” as quickly as it has. The vision was ten family homes giving a new mom and dad to between 120-150 orphans within 10 years. As we began to promote the idea, people began to respond. Soon we had thousands of dollars from partners with the expectation that the children would be coming to their new home soon. However, there was an immediate challenge before us. In order to implement this vision, we needed to buy land with access to electricity and water.
The Eternal Families Tanzania has gained legal status, and we have opened seven homes with wonderful Christian parents giving care to approximately seventy orphans. The land purchase was successful and the vision was shared with the local government that worked with us in getting the needed electric transformer installed on the property. The needed water line has also been brought to the property for future access.
Late last year we were blessed with a significant gift from Tooger and Doc Smith to completely build the first home. That home has been completed and was dedicated with Tooger’s son and daughter-in-law present on August 24. After this first gift and the site was beginning development, we received he finances for House #2 and we have partial funding for House #3. I have been overwhelmed by the generosity of so many friends, and we project these homes with be completed by November. Construction began in February of this year, and in a matter of ten months, we will have 30% of the Eternal Families project completed.
This past Saturday as I watched all the children meet each other for the first time, and the parents work closely together, I knew this was going to be a special ministry. The beauty of the evolving community was special to watch. We had a wonderful dedication service, complete with a cookout on the front porch of House #1, now dedicated as Chief’s House in memory of Nancy Smith, Tooger’s wife.
The future is bright for Eternal Families Tanzania. More sponsors are needed for our children. That information is available on our sponsorship page. We also need friends who would partner with us to begin the construction of another home. The goal is ten in ten years and we presently have three near completion. The vision is becoming a reality. We invite you to be a part of it.