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Proceeds from the 2023 CFFR fundraiser will be donated to NubAbility, in DuQuoin, Illinois, and Beacon House-Ghana, in Ghana, West Africa. Learn more about the organizations below.
Beacon House - Bawaleshi Child Development Center (Greater Accra Region, Ghana)
Beacon House started in 2006 with a few missionaries in Ghana who had a Christ-filled heart for at-risk children. It started out as an orphanage where Beacon House took in abandoned or at-risk children from dysfunctional households, while working with the parents to improve the environment. Most of the children were from broken homes or were street children in remote areas. Some children had communicable diseases or other life-threatening illnesses.
At any given time, the home had 25-30 children. Although not affiliated with the government, Beacon House worked closely with the Department of Social Welfare on creating rules and laws to better the treatment of children in orphanages. However, Ghana eventually signed the Hague Convention on the Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption in 2016 which began the closing of privately run orphanages in favor of utilizing a Foster Care system. Notwithstanding Beacon House’s disagreement with that aspect of the Convention, we still work very closely with the Department of Social Welfare in identifying and placing at-risk children. Beacon House closed the orphanage homes in May of 2019, transitioning to community level interdictions and child literacy programs.
Currently, Beacon House is building a Children’s Development Center in the village of Bawaleshi (BCDC), in the Greater Accra Region. In a survey conducted in November of 2021 there are approximately 2100 children aged 5-18 years of age in the service area. Our target age group is 5-16 years. The purpose of the BCDC is to improve literacy of the children thereby giving them greater opportunities in life. The school system in Ghana is very poor with few resources. We work together with the schools in such areas as book donations, curriculum development, and child monitoring. Given the Center’s proximity to Ghana Christian University (approx. 5 miles) there are ample volunteers available to work and learn about children’s issues and ministry to them. Dr. Patrick Cline, the Executive Director of Beacon House and Professor of Business at Liberty University, built GCU and created the School of Professional Studies.
(Above) A few of the Beacon House kiddos deliver books from a fundraiser in Minnesota for a school in Sasaabi.
Benji, pictured above, is a young boy with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) who we have worked with an adoptive family in Germany to help get the medical attention needed and be with his forever family. Adoptions are not usually granted in Ghana now due to the Convention, except for very serious health issues.
(Above) Children in East Legon Primary School receiving books from a fundraiser with United Airlines’ pilots in Ghana. UA has agreed to bring over books on its flights, which makes it much easier to bring in high-quality books that are pedagogically sound and age-appropriate.
The BCDC Library Project will have interconnected containers and a large, covered roof. Containers are cheaper to use than cement buildings and offer a secure place to hold books and other materials. The Center will give children a safe and educational environment to stay after school until their parents can pick them up. This is much safer than them being on the streets until late in the evening, or home alone.
NubAbility (DuQuoin, Illinois)
NubAbility changes lives by showing limb-different kids they CAN. The certified 501(c)3 non-profit's mission is to provide limb-different children with limb-different coaches who instruct and inspire, giving them confidence to succeed in sports and in life.
With a name that comes from "Nub" - what the organization calls their limb-different limb - and "ability," NubAbility® Athletics Foundation was created to help children ages 4-17 with congenital or traumatic limb difference, frozen limb or highly mobile cerebral palsy, gain courage and confidence through participation in mainstream, organized sports. Once these young athletes learn they can overcome challenges on the playing fields, they take the same lessons of grit and perseverance into other areas of their lives.
NubAbility’s biggest camp is the All Sports Camp it holds in Du Quoin, IL, each July. This year, this camp will feature four days of expert coaching by 80 limb-different instructors in 19 sports. Previous camps have drawn participants from 49 states and 11 foreign countries, and the organization anticipates that the 2023 All Sports will bring more than 150 children and their families to Southern Illinois. This camp is supported by the work of more than 200 community volunteers in areas from food preparation to security to sales at their pop-up Nub Shop.
Starting with their first camp in 2012, NubAbility has served more than 1,700 limb-different children at more than 50 camps in 14 states. In 2023, the non-profit will provide instruction in 24 mainstream, organized and outdoor sports at 15 camps across the country. The organization is proud that their work helps build diversity and inclusion in sports - and that children leave their camps owning their limb difference and ready to participate on their community and school teams.
To learn more about this program or to sign up to attend a camp or volunteer, please visit www.nubability.org.