“Don’t Miss the Joy…!”

“Joy is prayer; joy is strength: joy is love; joy is a net of love by which you can catch souls.”   By  Mother Teresa   
I really love December! We can take a look back on the year to account for ourselves and also look forward to new opportunities, new dreams, and a new year.

But there is much more about December. It is Christmas Time!  It is the time to celebrate the real meaning of the Christmas season and to share the joy of life. My joy is believing we all come into this world for a reason and believing Jesus could be the very first poster child for coming into this world with a Christmas Joy 3purpose. His birth, His life, and finally His death was totally dedicated to fulfilling that purpose.

Similarly, we (“Friends”) also have a purpose in my opinion and the purpose is uniquely different from one person to another, from one “Friend” to another. And, as a collection of “Friends” I believe our purpose is Divine. I also believe when we are the closest to knowing, understanding, believing, and actively involved in this purpose, the joy we experience is unmistakable and wonderful.

So, my Christmas message to “Friends” is that as a group of folks we are divinely called upon to help Copey and we should consider our work a joy for us and a blessing to others. We should enjoy family and friends…and not “miss the joy”.

Update on the New Multi-Purpose 

Our formal application to Building Goodness Foundation (BGF), located in Charlottesville, Virginia, requested their support to join us as partner in our efforts to initiate a successful fundraising campaign in 2018, was “not approved”.

copey-learning-center-exterior-perspective-view-001.jpgThe reasons for not approving cited by BGF were: a) a BGF policy change  placing their building focus on Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras (and some very rural areas in Nicaragua). And b) BGF did not see any real value being added for them to be involved since a local (Copey) crew could do the work.

Of course, this decision is very disappointing news for “Friends” everywhere, the Copey community, and me personally. We devoted a great deal of time and energy in the preparation of the application to provide us the best opportunity to be evaluated and examined as a serious and worthy “partner” in this building project. However, we appreciate and have “thanked” BGF for the experience and the opportunity to be considered as “partners”.

I thank each of you who contributed to the preparation of the application. We were all proud of it. Special thanks to Larry, Cindy, and Carol! 

We are not discouraged and will move on! We will continue efforts to find alternative ways to get our new Learning Center funded and built. Looking back to my earlier comments about knowing you have a purpose, consider this a very “special” purpose we have. We plan to do all we can to build the new Learning Center. Stay tuned as we begin to develop a new strategy for succeeding.

Year End Review

Another joy I have each year is sharing our year-end performance report with allBalloons“Friends”. The twelve months have passed quickly but we have made great use of our time. During the next few days, I will complete our “2017 Performance Report” for both the financial and non-financial support we provided the Learning Center.

The year has been extraordinary in many ways. “Friends” has continued to impact lives by providing life-changing experiences for many. Look out for a “special two-part” year-end “2017 Performance Report” later this week.  Thank  you from the bottom of my heart!

 

 

 

 

“Friends”…Not A Destination But A Journey!

“Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.”     By Helen Keller                                                                                                     
“Friends”, this is my last installment of the photos from the recent trip to Costa Rica although I may slip a few more in over the next few weeks. So, please stay connected. I have enjoyed all of the comments regarding the photos and some of you have even stated you are planning to attend the graduation next November. Believe me…there is more than enough love and affection in Copey for all of us to enjoy. Is it about time for us to make our “New Year’s Resolutions? 

Photos Below include in order: “Friends of Copey” and the Copey Learning Center united; Dancers during the graduation ceremony performing; Jane with 2017 Graduates Fabriana and Mariana;  A view from the mountain of Jaco in the distance (nearly four-hour drive to the Pacific coast from Copey); Beach front in Jaco; Croc’s Resort in Jaco, and one of Croc’s crocodiles.

graduation 1    Graduation.2  Graduation 3jane-fabriana.jpg           Jaco 1    Jaco 2  Jaco 4  Jaco 3  Jaco 5Life in Jaco is almost the opposite to the way of life in Copey. Both places are worth experiencing. Get in touch now with your travel agent to arrange for next year’s graduation.  My very best wishes to all “Friends”.

 

Picturing You in Copey…!

“There are two great days in a person’s life – the day we are born and the day we discover why.”    By William Barclay

So we continue….!

This is the third installment of photos documenting the recent trip to the Copey Learning Center. Hopefully, you are seeing the reasons why “Friends of Copey” was first established five years ago and why we continue our involvement.  The following photos are: Larry and Cindy Windes receiving  the “Distinguished Friends Award” for their work on the new Learning Center design;  Ana Yancy receiving the “Outstanding Leadership Award” and signed copy of Felicia Mitchell’s (English Professor at E&H College) book “Waltzing with Horses”I wish you could picture yourself being at the Copey Learning Center.

Graduation 10      Graduation 7 Ana PresentationSeidy, the Founder of the Copey Learning Center with Board President Lorena; Ariana (2017), Celeste (2016), Fatima (2017) Pathway Project students.  Lourdes (2018) Pathway Project student candidate. Proudly wearing E&H College colors.Graduation 11    graduation-81.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

Jane and I shared her final hours in the nearby town of Santa Maria before she returned to the USA. She provided the Copey community all she could offer under extraordinary conditions. She was recognized for sharing her time and talents during the 90 days she spent performing outstanding educational and community service. It was an honor to be with Jane on her final day in Copey.

Graduation 12Jane Certificate

Thank You Jane!

We can all learn something from one another and we are never too young or even too old for our lessons. Jane taught us all a few things over the past three months. I am mindful of a few important life lessons I can share.

First, we each have a purpose for being here and one of the biggest regrets in life…is to never figure your purpose. Next, life does not intend for us to keep that “light under the basket”. We are happier, more fulfilled, and worthwhile when we bring light to a life needing hope and encouragement. And finally, owing something is not a bad thing…since it means you were given something. I have been given far more than I have means to repay. But, I am willing to pay something. As Jane has been known to say…“It just gets better!”

Other News

We are still waiting on a decision regarding our partnership application with Building Goodness Foundation. Our sincere hope is that we will hear soon and that the news is good.

The Learning Center is officially closed until February but work continues. In 2018, there will be a full list of opportunities to help support the Learning Center. We are nearing the end of our fourth complete year of support and we look forward to the upcoming year with great anticipation.