3 Missions Teams, 3 Continents, 3 Blogs
It has been estimated that there are over 450,000 homeless people in Kolkata, India. In Dadaab, Kenya over 1000 refugees arrive daily from Somalia suffering from starvation and dehydration. The horn of Africa is currently undergoing a terrible drought that is forcing people to flee to UN refugee camps in search of food and water. In the Dominican Republic there are thousands of Haitian refugees, many without any official documentation, who are essentially stateless. These were the needs that Tyndale University College students faced when they left in May for India, the Domincan Republic and Kenya.
The three missions teams spent three to four weeks reaching out to people, learning about different cultures and sharing their faith. One team of four women from Tyndale went to India to partner with the Shaw family, ministering to women in the red light district of Kolkata and helping with children’s vacation Bible school. A team of three men went to Kenya, in partnership with Canadian Baptist Ministries, and spent three of four weeks in the remote town of Dadaab near the Somali border. A third co-ed team of two men and four women went to the Dominican Republic to serve with Monsoon Global Discipleship Encounter.
Tyndale has partnered with many missionaries over the years and Tyndale Missions Mentor, Dave Roberts, is always encouraged by the responses he gets. “We get positive responses from our missions partners all the time,” he says. “There is strong sense of contribution and blessing in the relationships. The ministry of encouragement to our missions partners is an important part of the trips.” Shannon Conaghan of Monsoon Global Discipleship Encounter, in a letter to Dave Roberts, had this to say about the team that went to Dominican Republic: “Thanks for sending me these guys. They have been an incredible blessing to me, to my students, to friends in Boca Chica and to my fellow teachers and church family. Thank you.”
All of the teams are now safely back in Canada and have had a chance to reflect on their trips. “Going to Dominican was eye-opening, inspiring, challenging and overall, a great blessing,” said Alex Staines, a member of the Dominican Republic team. “Every day was an adventure; learning how to use the public transit, attempting to speak Dominican Spanish, and running programs for the children. Yet, I was taken by the simplistic way of life in Dominican and their strong value on relationships and family. All in all, Dominican was a great experience!” Alex, along with her teammates Josh Mourtzanos, Shantol Nelson, Britney Bryan, Kody Harnum and Emily Puccini spent three weeks in Dominican learning and serving in the areas of Barahona, Boca Chica, Santo Domingo and Zona Colonial.
While they were abroad, the three teams blogged about their experiences through the Tyndale website. Their raw reflections describe in detail what it was like in Dominican, India and Kenya. From taxi rides in the sweltering heat of Kolkata to exploring the sprawling refugee camps of Dadaab, the students captured their experiences as they encountered them. Read more about their experiences and the places they went yourself by visiting the Tyndale Missions Blogs website.