Don Lee, of rural Cardington, described his recent mission visit to Pemba, Mozambique, Africa, when he was the guest speaker at the January meeting of the Cardington Seniors.
Lee said his visit to Mozambique was selected because Cardington native Liz Gliem resides there and manages a Moringa tree farm, part of the Iris organization. Iris was initiated 28 years ago in California by Rolland and Heidi Baker whose mission was to reach out to countries that cannot grow their own food.
Lee said the Moringa tree farm has 18,000 trees, the leaves of which are ground, dried and added to food as a supplement. Plans are for the oil of the tree to be sold for use in cosmetics thus providing money for the farm.
Currently, food is provided for 200 orphans per day and another 100 local people are provided with a bowl of food each daily.
Gliem has 30 people from local tribes working on the farm for $1.45 per day.
“They work hard and are being protective and respectful of her,” said Lee.
Lee, who was there two weeks, helped workers prepare more land to plant the trees. They used a plow that had been sent by volunteer groups in the U.S. They had to clear large rocks from some of the field. After much searching they were able to find a cable to improvise for this clearing as they had no log chains.
Lee, who did not speak the language of Portuguese, relied on the drawing in dirt, pictures of what he wanted to have the locals do.
He said it was very hot there with about three hours of the temperature reaching over 100 degrees and only cooling to 80 degrees at night. Soil conditions are unpredictable. The ground has large cracks over a foot deep, but after a moderate rain, soil loosened and they were able to do the planting.
Lee said they are being helped in this program by volunteer donations from Minnesota groups who sent a railroad box car filled with equipment and supplies they requested. Lee said he has taken donations to Minnesota to be part of these shipments.
He noted that with progress made they have concerns with Isis being in the area and trying to brainwash the locals. Prayers are needed for the mission work to continue.
Offering devotions at this meeting, held at the Senior Center, was Pastor Paul Turner. The Center staff served the lunch and cookies were provided by seniors Carolyn Poorman and Marlene Renz.
The next meeting will be held Feb. 23. Reservations or cancelations should be made by Thursday, Feb. 22 by calling 419-946-4191.
Cookies will be provided by Linda Gordon and Shirley Robinson.