My name is Autumn Buzzell and I live and work in Ghana, West Africa with City of Refuge Ministries. Here, I run our school, Faith Roots International Academy, and get to be a part in rescuing and the healing of children who have been trafficked into the fishing trade, orphaned, abandoned, and those who just need a little extra loving. What an amazing gift this life is!

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Wednesday, February 2, 2011

A little Catch-up--Monday Student Post/Wednesday Challenge/and School Update all in ONE!

It's been a few days since I've posted, so I figured it was about time for a little catch-up here on my blog.

My usual Monday blog passed me by in a flurry of baby love around here. An adoptive parent came to pick up her son after a six month wait, and she came to join us here for a couple of days starting on Sunday.

Usually on Mondays, I tell about one of the kids at the Freedom Center. Today, I will be talking about one of the Omorefe kids, Paul. Paul is Johnbull's younger brother from Nigeria. He is 12 years old and loves all kinds of things.

*Paul loves a good story. When we were in Community 3 in Tema and would go on our nightly walks, even though Miracle would often be the one following along with the stories that I told, Paul was the one who would ask for more stories. He loves hearing any good story!

*Paul can be rather dramatic. I remember the first time that I asked him to quote his memory verse, he put on this face and said, "My name is Paul Omorefe and my bible verse is. . .". He likes speaking in front of others, even though he doesn't necessarily like the process of memorizing things that he needs to speak in front of others!

*Paul likes to be the first one chosen in any schoolwork competition. When it comes to reading comprehension, he's a pro! Still gotta work on spelling and vocabulary, but he loves to learn!

*Paul likes to laugh and when Rosemary (his sister) is in a good mood, she and Paul will joke and laugh together for a long time!

*Paul is a great older brother. He takes care of Justice, Miracle, JJ, and Caleb at different times. He loves to be helpful. Sometimes, he does the typical older brother thing and gets in trouble, but for the most part, he is a great older brother!

*Paul LOVES to watch TV. He loves movies. He loves African TV. We usually have to set limits for him because he loves it so much. But, I think that in some ways, it has encouraged his imagination to grow!

*Paul's newest love is riding his bike. He's getting faster and faster on that thing! I think it's encouraging him to be a little more active.

*I would say that Paul's best friend is Aaron. They get along pretty well and seem to share a lot of the same interests.

*All in all, Paul is a helpful and fun-loving boy. He is enjoyable to be around and I'm blessed to know him!

Here's a picture of Paul:

Now, as for my typical Wednesday blog--a Wednesday challenge--this one goes out to Evangelist Sandra Riley who was here visiting a week ago. We were talking about being able to know when to hydrate and when not to hydrate depending on the types of bathroom situations that are around!

You see, when we head up to Lake Volta, it is a 10 hour stretch of nothing but the bush. On those trips, I tend to drink very little on the road so that I don't have to "go" in the bush (I'm always a little nervous about the strange reptilians that could live in the bush!). By the time we make it to Chinduri, I'm thirsty and ready to hydrate myself once more (since there is a toilet and running water in the place where we stay).

Now, this isn't to say that I wouldn't go in the bush if it was an emergency, just a preference toward the easier (and safer) way to go! (So, Joanna, don't think I'm stuck up. . .just want to avoid snakes and other animals from coming near my hiney!).

So, your challenge, this week, is to limit your intake of water to limit your number of times you have to use the bathroom. Not that you should be dehydrated, but just measure out when you are going to have access to a toilet and drink then, and when you're on the road, cut it off a couple hours before hand! It might be easier here, since the humidity saps so much of the liquids from you, but it's worth a try there!

Now, on to the school update. I haven't really done an update on the school in a LONG TIME! We started up school again last week and it's been going really well. I structured our time a little bit more so that we can have more instruction going on, and perhaps better instruction. That was well recieved and I think that it's been going well.

As for the new school building, the foundation is almost ready to be poured. The guys work so fast and I'm excited to see it come together more and more each day! We will have 15 classrooms, a computer lab, library, and administrative buildings. Our hope is eventually to house 300 students within the walls of the school.

So, because the building is coming up so fast, my job just got bigger. I need to start thinking about getting the school registered and things put together for next school year. I have a lot to figure out with testing (since we are using an American curriculum). So, I'm hoping to meet with another International School in Accra to figure out how to go about doing all of that stuff.

The challenge for me is to actually find the time to think through what needs to be accomplished, teach and mentor at the same time, oversee interns, take care of children, and all that this life requires. When you come here, your job isn't solely listed out in a job description. It comes with changes and challenges. And maybe this is all where dependance on God (my word for this season) comes in to play! I absolutely CANNOT do this on my own. I need a BIG God to handle this BIG season of my life. I just cannot do it alone.

As the months come and go, I realize that this job grows, but so does my faith. It has to grow. . .as my "normal" changes, as the impossible becomes possible, my faith has to grow for bigger and better things ahead. And I know that with God, and his faithful people around me, this school will come together and everything will happen just has He has given the vision!

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