Even before we left Boise, we had hoped there would be an opportunity for us to meet some small, otherwise unnoticed need for some of the girls in our care. Maybe something too small to broadcast on the international website, but too big to just cover from general funds.
Tonight I am really, really excited to have our first such opportunity. Here’s the story:
Our Aftercare programs often include vocational training. We work hard to help the girls learn a skill or trade that will provide long-term employment. English-speaking waitresses and baristas, especially those with customer service training and a solid work ethic, are in demand. So we operate the Destiny Café in downtown Chiang Rai as both a business and a vocational training model for girls who are interested in this career path.
When our girls work at the Café, they are required to provide their own transportation and to be on time as they would for any job in the real world. Two of our girls had been walking to work for a while before some loving Destiny Rescue volunteers gathered up enough money to purchase pedal bikes for each of them. Some of our volunteers are single people surviving on much less than the USA minimum wage, so this was no small sacrifice.
Unfortunately, both bikes were stolen just weeks after they were purchased. The girls left them out in front of the Café, unlocked. It’s a mistake they wouldn’t make twice, but what’s done is done. They are now back to walking to work each day, and that includes walking home on very dark streets late at night. I would never allow my own girls to do that. It’s just not safe. And yet these girls, who have every reason to be afraid of the dark, keep walking without complaint each day.
Of course, we want to find a way to replace the stolen bikes (with locks this time). The only catch is that our Aftercare team has asked that we do not give them directly to the same girls. It would appear we were showing favoritism. So instead, we would like to provide bikes as free “Café Bikes” which can be used by any of our girls who might need them.
Bikes will cost about $100 each, including a combination lock. We would like to buy at least two, but if we can raise more funding we could buy a third bike, helmets, spare parts for maintenance, etc.
If you would like to be a part of this, please hit the link below and go to our giving page. Select “Café Bike Fund” as the Purpose (see picture), so we know what your gift is to be used for. Other gifts are used to support our family, and are always appreciated, but we want your gift to go to the right place.
We will be contributing as much as we can as well. I wish we could cover the entire amount, but things are pretty tight right now. So thank you for your generosity. I can’t wait to tell you how this blesses these sweet girls.
Here is the link to our giving page (Remember to select “Cafe Bike Fund” as the purpose for your gift) Thank you!