Mabel’s Care Center
There will be much activity at Mabel’s Care Center over the next 12 hours, but in the early hours of the morning you will find Jayanthi and her staff starting the day with devotions before welcoming children from some of the poorest families in the area into their care for the day.
Shortly after 8:00 a.m. 55 young children (ages 2-5) begin arriving for our full day early childhood program. Bundled up in their wool hats and sweaters against the morning cold, some have walked several miles to get there. Others come with their mothers who are able to leave their children at day care while they join the Women’s Empowerment Program in a room next door. All of these children will spend the day in a safe and nurturing environment where they are taught reading, writing, Bible songs, nursery rhymes, poetry, Bible stories and basic hygiene. They will be fed a nutritious lunch and healthy snacks. A medical and public health team provides immunizations, nutritional supplements and tracks their growth.
Around 4:00 p.m. as the young children and the women leave, 50 graduates of the early childhood program (ages 6-17) arrive for after-school care to receive academic tutoring, learn vocational skills (basket-making, knitting and sewing) as well as Christian education. They have opportunity for supervised play and will receive a healthy snack.
Under the loving and caring leadership of Jayanthi and her staff, each of these children receives individual attention and is carefully monitored for academic, physical and emotional progress. Regular home visits are made to meet with the parents and to assess the children’s home environments. The Mabel’s Care Center also provides hygiene and other public health education for the community.
As we serve the very poor and needy, the homes of these children are often just one or two rooms with a tin roof and often lack running water. Disease, abandonment, unemployment, alcoholism and abuse are the major hardships for children in the area. Inadequate clean water supply especially impacts the youngest children, and the threat of infectious disease is always present. Located in the township of Kodaikanal in the Palni Hills of South India at 7000 ft. elevation, the cold and upper respiratory problems are additional hardships for these children.
For the opportunity to serve these Children of God, we give thanks. From desperate and hopeless situations, they are being nurtured and equipped to change their world through Jesus’ love.