shiny new Australia.)
So they mentioned today at church that on January 28 they've invited 4 other churches to join us and we're building Caregiver Kits. So there are parts of Africa where medical supplies and medical facilities just don't exist. At the same time, there are all kinds of people suffering. So there are people who travel, typically by bicycle, to care for them. In many cases, they are dying of HIV/AIDS, these caregivers are simply making their final weeks and months more comfortable. So these kits - they provide medical supplies to the caregivers.
Caregiver Kit Builds are events at churches, corporations and organizations where people come together to pack the supplies into the kits and then write a note. Many people also pray for the kits. It's pretty cool. Medical supply companies make the contents of the kits available at near cost, sometimes for free. It's good publicity for them and when they provide it at less than cost, they get the write-off. So when a group decides they want to do the kits, they coordinate through World Vision who coordinates with the suppliers who deliver the materials to the build site and then coordinates to ship the kits once built. (The plastic cases go on to additional lives once the supplies are exhausted - mostly in about a month's time.)
I've participated in kit builds before because I work for World Vision. But I hadn't participated at one with a church before, so it's kind of exciting that we're doing it this year. Each year we do what we call "Advent Conspiracy" where we pick a project and then collect money during the Christmas season, challenging people to buy fewer presents and donate money instead. And so this case the AC benefactor is the caregivers. I do not know if I'll get to build kits or not -- Lori also wants to do it, so it may be that I hang out with Ben while she and Rachel (and maybe Lori's mom) make the kits.
But, here's where the Wish List comes in. If you were thinking of buying me something this year, maybe instead you'll donate money towards the cost of supplies. If you'd like to do so, mail a check for $28 to Our Savior's Baptist Church, 701 South 320th Street Federal Way, WA 98003 and note that it's for Caregiver Kits. And if you're in town, please consider coming by - these build events are described as "exciting" and "rewarding" and "fun."