Blog

  • July 21st, 2014

    Introducing: Fair Trade Friday

    While it's often easy to give people in poverty what they need; it's empowering to help them meet their own needs. They don't need more charity. They need more opportunity.

    The two homes in Kenya that we support are full of mothers, mothers-to-be, babies and toddlers. It's a wonderful kind of hard when we are at capacity. It means we are helping, but it also means there are others hurting.

    There is a heartbreaking slum at the base of the mountain from our beautiful new home. And now every Friday, the Mercy House staff is taking mercy to 12 new young single moms who live less than a mile from our organization. They are being introduced to God, they are learning skills and they are finding hope.

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    And on the other side of the world, at the same time, in a small, packed room, the same thing is happening with displaced refugee moms.

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    And it's happening in Ethiopia, India...

    We now have a way to support them all:

    It's called Fair Trade Friday.

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    What: An affordable subscription-based club that delivers a box of beautiful fair trade product created by women we support, delivered by  the first Friday of every month (starting in September)! Check out the options.

    Why: Fair Trade Friday exists as an avenue for women to empower women.  We are tackling poverty through job opportunity and empowerment rather than enablement. 100% of the proceeds support the artisans, hundreds of women and children from all over the world. FTF is a ministry of Mercy House Kenya.

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    When I think about what $30 or $60 a month means to these young mothers in Kenya--how it will help them meet basic needs for their children--I can't help but think this is a bit of Heaven on earth.

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    Plus, it's really cute stuff.

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    And fun mail!

    The club has a limited membership (we will continue to expand in the near future), so join today!

    Fair Trade Friday is a ministry of Mercy House.

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  • June 13th, 2014

    Welcome Home

    In May, we finalized the cash purchase of this beautiful home, our second, just a couple of kilometers from our first. We are so grateful to God for providing this lovely home through the support of generous donors.

    This new space allowed us to bring in 6 new girls a couple weeks later, ranging in age from 12-16 years old. Please meet a few of them:

    They were warmly welcomed by some of our new moms as housemates!

    Please pray as they adjust and also for their unborn babies. We will have a full house in September 2014!

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  • May 8th, 2014

    Your Yes Matters

    Mercy House wouldn't exist without your yes. 

    There have been thousands of people who have said yes to God and helped create this house of mercy.

    Thank you.

    If you've wondered about how all this began, you can now read the entire story here, by founder Kristen Welch:

    Order it in the Mercy Shop today and support Mercy House. For a limited time, you can also get a Your Yes Matters bracelet at a deep discount with your book order.

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  • April 22nd, 2014

    Field Work: Home Visits and Small Business Updates

    In the Fall of 2013, we brought in family members of each of our residents for small business training. Recently, our Program Manager and Director visited to check on the progress of the businesses and on the welfare of each family. It's or ultimate goal to reintegrate girls and their babies back into their homes whenever possible. 

    Maureen is visiting with Lucy's father. He is showing her his business account:

    She is checking out his large crop of kales and spinach that he began growing after his business training.


    Violet's sister attended the business training for her family and has expanded her tailoring business to also sell fabrics and has opened a small shop on the side.  

     

    Quinter's mom has started three businessed after the business training. She began with selling cooked porridge, cooked beans and maize to selling used clothes and a butchery (selling meat). All the businesses are doing very well.


    These are just a few examples of what's been happening. We are so proud of these famlies. Edith's Aunt expressed her gratitude for taking care of Edith and her Hawi and further committed to ensuring that the resident had a family and a place to call home after exiting the program.

    Overall Observation:  A considerable number of the parents/guardians who had attended the Business Training had already started up their businesses which were functional and some had already reached a milestone with regard to their businesses.

    Your faithful financial support has been a huge blessing in so many ways. Thank you!

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  • April 1st, 2014

    For Mothers Everywhere

    It's no secret we love mothers.

    And we have a beautiful way to celebrate mothers all over the globe this year for Mother's Day.

    It's just over a month away and we've made your shopping easy this year. Introducing our brand new LIMITED EDITION gorgeous paper bead mother's necklace in green and pretty pink handcrafted beads made our young mothers in Kenya at Mercy House.

    This is a beautiful, meaningful way to bless your mother, mother-in-law, mother friends as well as young mothers across the ocean:

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    The first 50 sold also receive an adorable FREE Mother's Day Card and all the proceeds go to bless mothers in Kenya!

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    Inside card: Hope your Mother's Day is loads of fun!

    Back of card:

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     Click over and read more about them. (We are also selling them on leather cord necklaces instead of paper beads).

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    Get yours soon because these won't last. Give a gift that blesses two mothers!

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  • February 27th, 2014

    Love Mercy Prayer Bracelet

    Do you know who the most oppressed group of people are in the world?

    Girls.

    All around the world, girls long to receive an education, to live without the absolute terror of violent sexual crimes committed against them at home, in their neighborhoods, as they walk to school. The cycle of poverty and violence and the unbelievable injustice in our world runs deep and we cannot ignore it.

    Simply put, in many countries, it's life-threatening to be female.

    At Mercy House, we seek to break this cycle in the name of Jesus. And I'm convinced, this is done through prayer.

    And so, we invite you to pray for the endangered girls in our world today with this simple idea:

    It's a bit of twine.

    And a single heart.

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    It's a simple reminder to pray.

    It's an easy way to share their story.

    It's a bracelet that's supposed to fall off.

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    Get yours today. They are $10 each, free shipping and 100% of the profit benefits endangered girls in Kenya. 
    How to pray for the oppressed girls in our world:
    1. Pray for their salvation.
    2. Pray for their safety.
    3. Pray that the cycle of violence that goes hand-in-hand with extreme poverty would be broken
    4. Pray for the end to corruption of governments that are unjust and oppress girls
    5. Pray for the shattered, violated hearts of wounded girls around the globe
    6. Pray that the strongholds of violence, oppression and hopelessness would be broken in the name of Jesus.

    This is the perfect service project for you and your kids, family, and groups.

    Order a Love Mercy Bracelet Kit (Makes 25 Bracelets):

    This idea was inspired not only to raise needed funds to help more girls in Kenya; it was also inspired as a practical hands-on service project activity for families, kids groups or Bible studies to do together.

    If you'd like to do a service project with your family, a church or children's group, you can order a kit of 25 for $10 (to cover expenses and shipping) and serve Mercy House by putting the bracelets together. You can return them for us to sell or you can help by selling them to friends and family for $10 each. Kits are available here.

    Service Project: Easy 3-step instructions and supplies to make 25 bracelets are included in each kit. We'd love for you to sell the bracelets to family and friends and we ask that any unsold bracelets or funds are returned within 30 days of receipt.

    This instruction guide is included with each kit:

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    Prayer is the most powerful tool we possess to empower oppressed girls in our world.

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  • January 31st, 2014

    Spread the Love {Feb 10-14}

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    F e b r u a r y 1 0  - 1 4,  2 0 1 4

    I love a good love story. I'm a sucker for a hero and damsel in distress.

    And for the past few years, I've witnessed an epic love story that even Hollywood couldn't write. It has scenes of desperate broken-hearted girls, born into unthinkable poverty, used and abused by this world and fighting to survive... But then, the Rescuer comes. And He takes the bruised and shattered lives, expectant with hope and a child and He speaks healing and a future into their lives.

    Mercy House is a beautiful love story. It's a social media love story that started on a screen with a simple yes. It shouldn't be a success story. But our Hero uses weak and inadequate people in the middle of their mess to show his ultimate glory.

    Think about the best movie you've seen. What happens after you see it three times? You tell people about it. We aren't asking you to buy anything or donate a penny. We are asking you to simply tell people you know about this love story this week and bring awareness to this cause. Because here's the thing: It's still being written and you can be a part of it. How to spread {mercy house} love: Tweet one of these:

    Facebook --Like Mercy House Kenya Use one of these as your status:

    • I believe in the work of @mercyhousekenya. Check out how they are changing the world for moms http://www.mercyhousekenya.org #spreadthelove
    • I'm helping bring awareness to a beautiful love story @mercyhousekenya. Share this post and #spreadthelove

    Pin one of these pictures: Meet Edith. Tell her story @mercyhousekenya #spreadthelove Meet Sarah. Tell her story @mercyhousekenya #spreadthelove Baby Maureen is a @mercyhousekenya miracle baby #spreadthelove Win this epic basket-of-love-from @mercyhousekenya.jpg #spreadthelove

    Instagram-take a picture of any Mercy House product you own (t-shirts, jewelry, or even a screenshot of this page) and tag it: I love @mercyhousekenya #Spreadthelove Share one of these videos on your social media platform or email it to friends. And every time you share about Mercy House this week, you'll be entered to win this:

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    The basket contents include (plus a few extra things not mentioned) more than $500 from The Mercy Shop: One very lucky winner will win this amazing basket of goodies to keep or share. Every time you SHARE about Mercy House--through your blog, on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ you get an entry. Click here to list all your entries on this form. (And if you really want to increase your chances, you can earn up to 17 entries by sharing)

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    Grab a button and share!

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  • January 23rd, 2014

    Bring Mercy House to Your Church!

    For more than three years, The Mercy House has relied solely upon the support of individuals just like you. And my! Look what you've done!

    More than a dozen girls have been rescued from the slums of Kenya and shown the love of God. A dozen babies have been born, healthy and thriving. The girls' famiiies have been given love and support in the name of Jesus. We've been able to provide good, stable jobs to many good people who have become part of the family. Recently, during the (in)Mercy campaign, you all raised enough funds to provide a new van, a new classroom, a new generator, a new computer lab, and a second home to help The Mercy House rescue more girls and babies.

    Incredible.

    The story God is writing through The Mercy House is amazing, but the most unbelievable part of it all is how you stepped right up beside us to say, "Yes!" You are an important part of The Mercy House, and we hope that The Mercy House is an important part of your life. Today, we're asking you to share The Mercy House with the important people in your life: your family, your friends, and your church.

    We've introduced you to Mercy House Parties and Team Mercy, both great ways to support The Mercy House while sharing this story with your family and friends. Now, we're doing our best to help you share The Mercy House with your church.

    Currently, we have six churches supporting The Mercy House on a monthly basis, and we'd love to have more. But what we'd like most of all is for God's people to be encouraged and inspired by the story of what he is doing at The Mercy House. We've created multiple resources to help you spread the word. We can provide videos, brochures, bulletin inserts, Mercy House products to sell, or a little bit of everything. With Valentine's Day less than a month away, it would be our pleasure to help you and your church Love Mercy.

    If you'd like more information about sharing The Mercy House with your church, please contact us with "Church" in the Subject line. We can't wait to give you more ways to Share Mercy! 

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  • January 9th, 2014

    Introducing: Team Mercy Advocacy Program for Families

    What is Team Mercy? Become a team member and advocate for moms and babies at Mercy House Kenya and single moms in surrounding communities by bringing awareness through fundraising events and sharing this amazing God story in your local community.

    What is an Advocate? Definition: a person who speaks or writes in support or defense of a person, cause, etc. a person who pleads for or in behalf of another; intercessor.

    Why join Team Mercy:
    Not only will you be supporting a worthy, grassroots cause, you will have the opportunity to serve alongside your family. Being a Team Mercy member gives you opportunities to change the world! If there are local church events or conferences in your area, you could even represent Mercy House! We will have occasional contests and incentives for Team Mercy Members...you can win great Mercy House merchandise to help tell this story!

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  • December 6th, 2013

    Our First Graduation

    Once there was a prince and he was looking for a wife. He searched the land and found a farmer with two daughters. When he asked about the dowry for the young maidens, the farmer explained that for the educated daughter, who was beautiful and smart, pure and above reproach, the dowry was ten cows, a small fortune.

    But for the second daughter who was uneducated and not as pretty and broken, the dowry was one cow. The prince left and said he would come back the next day with his decision. And he did. He presented the father with ten healthy cows and the farmer brought his firstborn daughter.

    "No," the prince replied. "It is the second daughter I want." "Oh, you have paid too much," the father protested. But the prince gave the ten cows. Because he saw beyond her appearance or situation.

    He saw her for who she would become.

    He knew what love could do. DSC_1717

    He recognized her value.

    This Kenyan Proverb was shared at our very first Mercy House Graduation in November 2013. The first four girls brought into the maternity home, almost three years ago now have completed Phase 1 of the Rehema House program.

    And now they move into Phase 2, a halfway house of sorts with more independence and outside education as they are slowly reintegrated back into their homes if it's a viable option.

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    They were rescued when they were most hopeless. They were redeemed when they were destitute.

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    They have beautifully transformed from broken, desperate girls into glowing new creations. They have been

    given hope. And a future.

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    Every resident has a unique situation and while some may stay three years, others may stay longer. But the ultimate goal is to make disciples and send them out into the world as a light, a new generation of Esthers.

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    It was humbling beyond words--to be in this place for such a time as this.

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    As I shared how all this began, one small yes, that's grown into a God-sized dream, I could only give God the glory and thank Him for the good work He has done.

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    For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. -Psalm 139:13-14

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    As Terrell and I knelt on our knees before these beautiful new creations, robed in royalty, we washed their feet.

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    And not for one minute did these girls wonder if they were valuable. They knew they belonged to the Prince of Peace.

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    That's what love will do.

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