Thursday, April 9, 2015

Costs of a mission trip, financial and others

As much as we try to inject "fun" into fundraising, it's a time consuming and tiring business. I have not sent out the usual request letters this year, instead focusing on raising the funds through events, making and selling things and similar. Car wash, soap making, crocheting, rummage sale, selling candy and the like. It's a slow business, and inch by inch we head towards our goal. Three of us in my family are headed to Honduras this summer, as well as one embarking on other ministry trips this year.

This gets expensive. The cost of the Honduras trip starts at $1,875 per person. On top of that, we need more shots this year, others need passport updates, and there are usually other unexpected costs that pop up - items to take to the kids, tools that might be needed for projects, materials for crafts and fun things to do with the kids.

How does that $1,875 per person get used?
  • Approx $875 of the funds will be used on airfare - getting us from Pittsburgh to Honduras. 
  • Approx $100 will be spent on projects - buying supplies like paint, tools or whatever we will need to work down there. About 6 to 7 hours per day are spent working. We've painted walls, tied rebar, hung drywall, made metal screens for windows and so on.
    Typically that $100 won't buy as much as we need, so we do try to raise a lot more. Honduras has little in the way of manufacturing so many supplies are imported into their stores and can be pricey.
  • Room and Board - taking out the cost of food, the amount we pay to stay in the dorms goes to the Project and helps with the overall running costs.
So that puts about half of the $1,875 per person going to benefit the project itself. Any extra we raise will also go towards the Project. In the past 2 years funds raised by our church have gone to:
  • Beginning the building of the new school, so more children from the nearby town can be educated.
    This money was raising by our VBS in 2013.
  • Buying a new stove for the kitchen
  • Buying tables and chairs for the dining hall
  • Putting metal screens on the kitchen windows to keep out flies
  • Installing a wire mesh ceiling onto a store room so it could be used for a small shop that the kids could earn & buy treats for themselves
  • Purchasing new toilets for the boys dorms
  • Installing ceilings in the bedrooms of the missionary directors' home so they could sleep without scorpions and other bugs falling on them & their children.
The new school classrooms

New toilets for the boys dorms

This was all made possible from the hard work of the teams raising money, and the very generous donations of friends, family and our church.

What's the benefit of us flying down there to do this? Couldn't we send the money?
We could send the money. But going down there provides important extras.

1) We are able to bring extra labor and skills. Honduras is a 3rd world country, and we are able to bring some of our skills to help them.

2) We are able to see the needs first hand, which gives an extra passion to raise more for them.

3) Most importantly, we are lead by the Lord. We are lead to serve them, love them and help them. Yes, the money alone would help them but for them to see people who spend half a year fundraising, give up work vacation (and pay), pray for them and love them... well that's priceless to them. They feel more hope than we can imagine - kids who were abandoned, neglected to live on the streets, to beg for food or join gangs - showing them this passionate care gives them the hope and drive to succeed and hopefully to live for Christ as well.

The kids show their love

If you would like to help, we are having several events in the coming weeks - please come along, or share the details with others!

April 18: Vendor & Craft Show at Thorn Creek UM Church, Rockdale Rd, Butler
May 15/ 16: Rummage Sale at Crossfire, Butler
May 30: Car Wash at Wendy's, Clearview Mall.

Until  May 1: Online flower bulb sales: http://www.flowerpowerfundraising.com/i/t/449941/69rIap8d3EWa

You can also donate directly.

Paypal or Credit Card:
If you don't have a paypal account
you can still use this tab & just pay by card
Check - US Dollars Make checks payable to FUMC, and send to Fannins, PO Box 107, West Sunbury, PA 16061.  Please put HONDURAS - FANNIN on the memo line.
If you would like a tax receipt, please include a return address!



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