Have you ever been touched by the vision and goals of a particular non-profit and struggled with the fact that you didn’t have the money to write them a big check? I have. I’ve also wondered what I could do with my life and limited resources to help so many of the worthy causes that I encounter.
Early in our marriage, when our growing family was trying to stretch every penny I realized that in many cases my time and talents were just as important as my dollars. It was then that I committed to give a portion of my time, gifts and talents to serve and assist at church and various non-profits that were close to my heart. It was and still is the LEAST I can do!
With that in mind, a few years ago I was given the opportunity to go on a short-term missions trip to Bosnia and Herzegovina through our church. Short-term missions was something that I had always wanted to do. I love to travel and love to help people, but circumstances had prevented it in the past. Now God was opening the door for me to be able to “Travel with Purpose“. My first trip was with my husband and another couple and because of my photography hobby I was asked to participate on the trip using that skill set. I had the privilege of:
- documenting all the details of the outreach and ministry on the trip in pictures to share with others when we returned
- taking photos of the children that were sponsored by our church so that their sponsors in the U.S. could see how they were coming along
- taking photos of a missionary family, along with their home, neighborhood, church etc. so we could report on their progress to those supporting them at home – Soon after our visit they had to return to the U.S. unexpectedly for medical reasons and the photo book that I was able to create was a tangible reminder of their time serving in Bosnia.
What a thrill it was to be able to contribute out of my gifting! If you’d like to see a few of my favorites, you can check them out at Flickr here.
And it didn’t stop there! Last year I was working part time with a non-profit called Greater Reach Ministries (now Global Training Institute for Women – GTIW). They were in the planning stages of a training program that reaches around the planet to unleash influential women to impact their world. They were embarking on a vision trip to Israel & Jordan to meet with women and discover how GTIW might come alongside them to assist with encouraging, training, empowering, and releasing women to be all that they were created to be. Again, I was invited to join the team! I was so excited to be able to help with documenting the women and the culture in those countries so that we could bring back images to help convey the message of the ministry and the needs in the Arab world! And here’s a link to some of my favorites from this trip.
Now I have a new opportunity! This same ministry, GTIW will be conducting their first training session in May of this year in the Middle East and I’ve been asked to come along. This time I will document the sessions in pictures, as well as assisting the Team Mobilization Director with the many logistical and administrative tasks that will be involved in bringing the training team from the U.S. and about 20 women from 5 different Arab countries to the training location overseas. The photos will be used to raise awareness and funds for future training sessions and my administrative support should help this first session to run smoothly while lightening the load for the Director. I’m so thrilled at the chance to use what God has given me to help others.
How about you?
Have you found ways to use your gifts and talents to help where the need is greatest? Or perhaps you’ve been blessed with the financial resources to help others. We were not all meant to do the traveling. Some of us have the opportunity to help others fulfill their vision by responding financially. Is that your contribution to furthering these noble causes? If so, I would love for you to consider a gift to help me travel to the Middle East. My financial goal is only $2700 and $1000 has already been raised. This brings me almost halfway to my goal. Would you be willing to contribute $5, 50 or even $500? Every dollar really does count! None of it goes into my pocket. And the donations are tax deductible since GTIW is a 501(c)(3) non-profit!
If you’d like to help pay for the expenses of the trip, please go to the GTIW Support Page here and select my name (Nancy Hann) from the team member drop-down menu. Or if you’d rather mail a check, it should be made out to Global Training Institute for Women (or GTIW is fine), but PLEASE include my name in the address on your envelope or on a separate piece of paper so we know whose account it should be credited to:
8283 N. Hayden Road, Suite # 258
Scottsdale, AZ 85258
Thank you so much for considering a contribution. Every little bit helps. Feel free to come back and see the progress on the blue thermometer in the sidebar!
Have you had a chance to “Travel with Purpose”? Where did you go and what did you do? I’d LOVE to hear about it!