Happy New Year!! The long-awaited 2012 is finally here. A couple years back, millions of folks around the world began to draw a correlation between the Mayan calendar ending this December and the end of the world. Archaeologists claim, however, that the end of the Mayan calendar is just the end of the “long count” and that the end of one “long count” begins another one anew. Well, here at AHMEN, we have no time to waste thinking about end times....The AHMEN-SIFAT Initiative is set to transform Honduran communities well into next year and many years to come!
As Hugh Guffey has put it, “AHMEN has preformed exceptionally well over the years at half of what we are supposed to be doing.” By half, he means the “M” in AHMEN. Luckily, AHMEN is a blessed organization, and we are now fully incorporating a major “E” into our repertoire by joining forces with SIFAT. Yes, the Alabama Honduras Medical Educational Network and Servants In Faith And Technology are working together diligently to lead a series of 3-year community development, health education, and leadership training workshops across Honduras.
Students at the first AHMEN-SIFAT workshop in Cusuna (down the road beyond Limon) have graduated to their second year. The following is an abbreviated report from the brain behind ASI, Byron Morales:
The second year of training began on December 5th, 2011 with much assistance from the local Church of God. The next three major workshops will take place in three-month intervals so that the second-year students' graduation will intersect with the 2012 AHMEN International Medical Seminar.
|Pastor Nahun Flores, Byron's ASI-Cusuna Chief Assistant|
Second-year students have begun taking on greater responsibilities in addition to networking within community focal groups. In fact, Pastor Nahun Flores has been nominated to serve as Byron's chief assistant for the ASI-Cusuna....Benny Rowe would be ecstatic! The greater responsibilities and closer attention to local issues is already helping students envision what their specific goals in community leadership will be upon graduating from the program. The curriculum Byron has developed, and his student-teachers Jerry Batiz and Suyapa Turcios are helping implement, falls in line with both the Honduran National Health Plan and MAMUGA (The Garifuna Municipalities Network). Byron, the Honduran Congress, and MAMUGA all anticipate great benefit from continued focus on HIV/AIDS prevention and awareness and the reproducible, low-cost, high heat cook stoves in which SIFAT specializes. An additional responsibility students are responding to with excitement is the idea of beginning to work alongside mission teams as local community health consultants. Since receiving both instruments and training in monitoring blood pressure and eye care, some of the local health centers have requested ASI student support! Many thanks from the students go out to the August AHMEN medical brigade for the tools and training.
|Tomas Castillo of ASI-Cusuna|
As the AHMEN-SIFAT Initiative health promoters have grown stronger in their ability to begin leading their communities into a brighter tomorrow, they have come up with a proposal. ASI students have proposed sponsoring an HIV/AIDS prevention campaign in Limon this March. What an amazing way to kick off a new year!
In other news, two new ASI workshops in Yorito and Belaire will open this year! Personally, I can't wait to hear the positive news to come :) As you pray about the success of AHMEN building up its “E” component to grow as strong as its “M,” consider how your own “ME” can get involved!
As always, please contact me with any ideas and suggestions on helping fund the AHMEN-SIFAT Initiative.