Many first time travelers spend a lot of time preparing for their trips to Kenya. Few have been supporters of World Hope long enough to remember our very first campaign for Hope Academy. However Julie Thomas, a high school teacher with Orlando Christian Prep, can say she is one of the few. Ten years ago when Hope Academy was a vision of Dr. Janney’s, Julie’s then Elementary class, sponsored a chair at Hope Academy, affording one student the ability to attend school. Ten years later on a mission’s trip with World Hope, she got to meet a student that her classroom helped educate, and who is now attending medical school. This student not only met Julie, but also was a vital part in helping in the Medical clinic for the same trip. To see the circle of blessing in person was nothing short of God’s glory.
This story is just one of many coming from a very unique partnership forming within World Hope. This year Orlando Christian Prep has taken it’s role as Hope Academy’s sister school to new heights. In June of 2011 nearly a dozen members of the school’s faculty, support staff, and administrators visited Hope Academy, many for the first time. Initially their objective was to see the school, and assist the teachers in any way they could, offering advice in the classrooms, and support in the office. However this plan was quickly overshadowed by a much larger plan God had orchestrated. The teachers soon found themselves learning from the faculty of Hope Academy. Just a few days in intense bonds were being made and many teachers taught lessons side by side with their Kenyan counterparts. It was truly overwhelming.
As the trip closed another miracle soon emerged. Teacher’s, who in the states live on a notoriously small salary, felt the overwhelming need to bless their new friends, and mentors. A quick trip to the store, and a gathering of prayer and funds, lead to quite an awesome display of love. On the final day at Hope Academy, the outpouring materialized in the form of enough books, materials, supplies, toys, games, cloths and gifts to fill the courtyard. The only thing more awesome than the blessings was the celebration that ensued. Students and teachers, faculty and trip goers all joined together in dancing and singing of praise to the Lord. This is a bond that will not soon be broken, and a partnership that is now cemented in stone.