The Approach of Christmas 2018

November 2, 2018

Dear Faithful Supporter:

During this Thanksgiving season, I want to thank each of you for your continued support to the 200 children in Nairobi, Kenya and to the 60 children in Inez, Kentucky in the Hollows. Due to donations designated to construction projects in both Kenya and Kentucky, we were able to replace a bathroom at Homecoming Church in Inez, KY (see pictures below) and we were able to build a wall to provide needed protection to the children at Hope Academy in Nairobi, 

39032476_246418262665927_1935765391217262592_n

Kenya. A team of three volunteered their time and worked from 8am to 1 am for six days straight in order to replace a bathroom with a floor that was ready to collapse at the Homecoming Church.

In Kenya, we were able to employ 15 workers from different tribes in order to build a wall that provided the students protection from outsiders. This job enabled these men to be able to provide food for their families in exchange for their hard work of digging into rock and stone to create a foundation

38985018_219732715374332_667430092367986688_n

for the wall, as well as build the wall itself. The wall runs the length of the entire school and church. The construction of the wall is complete, but it still needs to be painted in compliance with the Nairobi city codes.

As the Christmas season approaches, our organization is already in prayer for the children and families that depend on us for any type of Christmas blessing. I am asking for you to give deeply and help create a special Christmas miracle for these children. Please help us once again provide a Christmas meal for the 200 children that attend Hope Academy and their families.

20140805_084505-2-1024x576

Also, help us provide food and small gifts for the 60 children in Calf Creek Hollow. We also need donations for support for these children in the upcoming year. Thank you in advance for your help and your donation. Please know that I am always appreciative of any size gift that you can give. Thanks again for making the Christmas season a special time for these children. Without you, these children would have nothing.

Sincerely Yours,

Marsha Grahek, President

See the PDF of the above original letter from Marsha with pictures of project activities

Report on Christmas 2017 & Plans for June 2018 Trip to Inez, KY

Dear Faithful Sponsors:

Thank you so much for your donations! Because of your generosity, we were able to give $1000 to the children at Calf Creek Hollow and $2000 to the children at Hope Academy for the Christmas season. We were able to buy greatly needed underclothing for the Appalachian children as well as soaps, deodorants, and school supplies. The children were very excited that they had gifts for Christmas because you did not forget them. The children at Hope Academy were thrilled again that they could participate with their families in a Christmas dinner/celebration. We saw to it that 995 children and family members were able to honor the birth of Jesus and participate in a meal of beans and rice with vegetables and small pieces of meat. What a feast for them! I had the privilege of listening to the group sing ‘Silent Night, Holy Night’ in the Swahili language.  What an incredible experience! A number of children said “Hi!” to me on the phone as I responded in their language with “Jumbo!” Two different countries, with two different languages were joined together with love and the excitement of having something special for Christmas. The children and families prayed again for special blessings over your lives in gratitude of what you do for them. Their prayers are the only gifts they have to offer as a thank-you to you.

Marsha working with one of the children at Inez, Kentucky during our June 2017 visit.

Now we are in great need to have you help again. Our funds are down to $95 and we need each of you to give your most generous gift to help these children. We don’t have any grants or donations for large corporations that help. We lean heavily on you and your gifts and are delighted to see your faithfulness again and again to these children. We are putting together a team to go to Inez, Kentucky to hold a summer camp for the children in Calf Creek Hollow during the last week of June. Please contact me at 804-908-1645 if your are interested in being a team member. Leave a message and I will return your call.

The children in Inez, Kentucky participating in a group exercise during our June 2017 visit.

Thank you again for caring about these children and helping. Remember we help the poorest of the poor and everything yo give is received with humble gratitude. My heartfelt thanks to each of you!

Sincerely Yours,

Marsha Grahek, President

See the above as the original letter from Marsha (PDF)

Project Respect members posing for a group shot in Inez, Kentucky during our June 2017 visit.

 

Arts and Crafts activities with the children at Calf Creek Hollow in Inez, Kentucky during our June 2017 visit.

Christmas Wishes 2017

Dear Faithful Sponsor:

Merry Christmas to you and your loved ones! During this season of Christmas, my heart is overflowing with gratitude for all the many blessings that I have and for each of you. I am especially thankful for how you have so faithfully committed yourself to help the children at Hope Academy and at Calf Creek Hollow. You have created so many miracles for these children.

cropped-DSCN3540-e1495464950127-2000x829

Unfortunately, we were unable to provide school supplies this year for the children because we did not get enough donations. We were hoping if enough donations came in for Christmas, we can provide the children’s school supplies as a Christmas gift. We are again at a place where we have less than $100 left for the children and I am in prayer asking God to create another miracle this Christmas season. The children and their families are praying, too.

cropped-20140805_063425-1

I am asking for you to give deeply in help create a special Christmas miracle for these children. Please help us once again provide a Christmas meal for the 200 children that attend Hope Academy and their families. Also help us provide food and small gifts for the 54 children in Calf Creek Hollow. We also need donations for support for these children in the upcoming year. Thank you in advance for your help and your donation. Please know that I am always appreciative of any size gift that you can give. Thanks again for making the Christmas season a special time for these children. Without you, these children would have nothing.

DSCN4223-2000x1200

Sincerely yours,

Marsha Grahek, President

See the above as the original letter from Marsha (PDF)

Report on 2017 Trip to Inez, Kentucky

August 16, 2017

Dear Faithful Sponsor:

I took a team of 11 with me in June to the Appalachian Mountains in Inez, Kentucky to provide a summer camp for the children that live in Calf Creek Hollow. It was a very challenging trip and our team worked very hard to break through the barriers of fear, distrust, feelings of worthlessness and hopelessness that have invaded these children’s minds. One older boy “D,” assured us that we were making an impact. In his own words he told us, ”I can’t believe all these children are smiling. I know them and they just don’t smile. They have been through so much and don’t smile about anything!”

IMG_20170622_141335560Later, “D” began to open up and share some of his darkest heartaches. He said ever since he was abandoned by his mother, he was told by everyone including his teachers that he was worthless and would never amount to anything. He talked about the environment he lived in and how tough it was. He described our team as a light he wanted to be around, but expressed fear that we would somehow be pulled into the darkness of his environment. We had the opportunity to share with him about how the negative messages he had been given were lies and that he was a very special person that had so much potential and was capable of accomplishing great things. He sobbed in response and said no one had ever told him that and gave our team the name of ”God’s Angels.”

Since he was 17, we made him co-recreation leader with Kevin. He ate dinner with us as a part of the team and during the first meal he left the table three times because he was fighting back tears. At the end of the week we presented him with a book of encouragement signed by all team members and a plaque. Several weeks later his dad sent us this note. ”I wanted to thank you and your group for having such a positive impact for “D”. He hasn’t had much external support, but God introduced him to your group and it was a blessing for my wife and me. Thank you very much. I pray God blesses your group to continue with the wonderful works you do.”IMG_20170621_122018083

This was one child we were able to reach. There were many others. Through history lessons, geography, writing, Bible stories, music, crafts and recreation, we were able to say, “we love you, God loves you, you are special, and your life has purpose.” Needless to say, without your support, we would not be able to impact so many children’s lives who have so little. A life of hardship and poverty can steal hope from so many and keep a child covered in a cloud of darkness. Your support allows us to bring light into those dark places.

IMG_20170621_130947849

So, I thank you with all of my heart and I thank the superb team, each who was willing to pay for his/her own hotel room for the week, his/her own food and transportation and then spend a week giving, giving and giving continuously in order to chip away at the darkness so the children were left with hope. 

19396655_845409895607945_181101485785067336_n

As you read this letter, l pray that you will again send your financial gifts to help these children. The Appalachian and African children both need school supplies. Continued monthly support is needed to keep these children from starving. And… Christmas will be coming soon. Any donation regardless of how great or small is greatly appreciated. Please help us to help these children. 

With heartfelt thanks and my deepest appreciation for all you do,

Sincerely yours,

Marsha Grahek, President

See the above as the original letter from Marsha (PDF)

IMG_20170623_121842501

19399599_845409572274644_159303689817841906_n

Mission Statement Letter from Project Respect

Project Respect is a §501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that partners with indigenous workers to enable them to provide help to their communities specifically poverty-stricken children and their families. Project Respect partners with Hope Academy of Nairobi, Kenya and enables them to take 200 children out of the Tassia slums. These children are provided a free education and two meals of beans and rice. These meals have literally kept them from dying of starvation.

Here, the children are being asked to show their spoons but due to translation issues, displayed their thumbs instead.

We have walked through the slums where these children live and have held their hands as we looked into their eyes and witnessed a flicker of Hope. We are proud to be able to make sure that $0.90 out of every dollar is used for the direct care of these children.

Marsha Grahek eating a rice-and-bean lunch with the students of Hope Academy in Nairobi, Kenya.

We need your help so we can continue to impact these children and a great way. There are thousands of children in the Tassia slums in Africa that would love to attend Hope Academy. Your support would make it possible for another child to go to school and save him or her from starvation and a life of poverty. Please help!

Our Efforts in Inez, Kentucky

Project Respect is also partnering to help children and families that live in Calf Creek Hollow in the Appalachian Mountains in Inez, Kentucky. We recently took back packs and tons of school supplies to Inez, Kentucky for these children. One parent commented that “the children in the hollow are always overlooked and forgotten.” Project Respect is working to make sure these children are not forgotten. We are developing a special summer camp for these children in June 2017.

Marsha Grahek with parents of children in Inez, Kentucky with new book bags and backpacks provided with your support.

We need sponsors to help finance this camp for these Appalachian children. Project Respect has been working with children and families who are the poorest of the poor. We have been responsible with our donations, making sure the maximum amount of the donation goes directly to the children.

Please help by making your check payable to Project Respect P.O. Box 29297; Richmond, Virginia 23242.

All donations are tax-deductible. Thanks so much!

Sincerely,

Marsha Grahek, President

Update from Christmas 2016

March 15, 2017

Dear Faithful Sponsors:

I apologize for taking such a long time to update you about Christmas. Regrettably, my dad passed away a few days after Christmas. I am delighted that my family and I were able to spend quality time with him before his passing. Even in the midst of saying “good-bye” to him, the children that depend on you were not forgotten. $800.00 was put toward gifts for the children in Calf Creek Hollow and that money was stretched even further by shopping at the Goodwill Store. Gifts of mittens, scarves, socks, shower gel, deodorant, and small gifts were given to the 54 Appalachian children. $1,500.00 was put toward the annual Christmas dinner at Hope Academy and the two hundred students and their families in Africa participated in a Christmas dinner that included the sharing of Jesus’ birth (approximately 1,000 people attended the dinner). Each child and family member is so appreciative of you for your support. Every Friday night, the children and family members from Hope Academy meet together and pray for blessings on the supporters that love them and give so they can eat and live. Their prayers are the only gifts they have to offer as a thank-you to you and they do that with such joy and grateful hearts.

cropped-DSCN4646-2000x850

A couple of weeks ago, I sent $1,500 to the children in Africa for the month of March and unfortunately our bank balance is down to $55.00. Where the support will come for the following months, I don’t know. But I am asking you again to help provide for these children with your most generous gift. I am including our latest budget for the 2016 year so that you can see how accountable we are for each dollar that is sent. Our non-profit is small compared to many organizations, but we are making an incredible impact on so many people with the money you contribute. We are grateful for every dollar that is donated to Project Respect and work diligently to make sure your dollar stretches as far as we can possibly stretch it.

DSCN4218-2000x1200

Thank you again for caring about these children and helping. Remember we help the poorest of the poor and everything you give is received with humble gratitude. My heartfelt thanks to each of you! 

Sincerely yours,

Marsha Grahek, President

See the above as Marsha’s original letter, with financial report section (PDF)

DSCN4237-2000x1200

DSCN3542

Education at Hope Academy Enables the Dream

May 27, 2016

Dear Faithful Supporters:

Greetings to you from the children at Hope Academy in Nairobi, Kenya!  l have been talking to the children in Kenya and they have been very excited to share with me their progress in school. They had a surprise for me and sung a song called “Education”. They are very acutely aware that an education is paramount to realizing their dreams of being able to get out of the slums and break the cycle of poverty. I listened to their laughter and giddiness as they shared with me their hopes and dreams for a life totally different from the one they are now living. You have enabled them to be able to believe that they have a chance at a different and better life. Children in Africa have to pay for an education. Without money, they are not even allowed to go to school. Without an education, they don’t even dare to dream or hope for something better. Thanks again for giving these children the courage to dream!

cropped-DSCN3445-3

I need your help once again. Unfortunately, the past two months have found us low on financial help. The children went for a week without food in March and April and we are struggling to gather the support for June. Please help us again to provide for these children. Their belief in your love and concern about their welfare is unwavering. You have proved to them that you will not abandon them.

20140805_084505-1600x500

Please send your most generous donation so we can continue to support these children. From the bottom of my heart, l say “thank-you”!

Sincerely yours,

Marsha J. Grahek, President

See the above as Marsha’s original letter to supporters