My heart burst with joy as I saw Jerry’s creative blue flyer in front of all fifty members of the CIRA organization. CIRA is the Central Indiana Realtist Association, and they support the underserved in terms of home ownership. Jerry is my friend who is a refugee in Uganda in exile for the last eleven years. I am a story teller and connect people through the stories they tell. I believe God for the miraculous.
Jerry became a friend over the many months I researched his story of how he became a refugee. He had to flee DRC Democratic Republic of Congo due to the barbaric acts of rebels and government soldiers. Uganda is a country willing to accept refugees. Here is the backstory. Jerry’s Story-Exile
Excellence in Exile
Jerry is an exceptional young person. At age 24, he learned English as this was the official language of Uganda. He was such an impressive worker and as a result was blessed by a donor willing to pay for his bachelor’s degree in Information Technology. One of the mission groups where Jerry worked as a guard, said “Jerry reported for work with a flashlight and a textbook. He studied through the night as he guarded the MAF-Mission Aviation Fellowship offices and international family’s properties.”
God Uses Facebook
We became friends on Facebook. He reached out because he learned I was a writer and he wanted my help to inspire, motivate and encourage the refugee youth to persevere in their dreams and become great future leaders. I cannot begin to describe the desperate circumstances and the hopelessness of the life of a refugee. Jerry is now 35 and has been a refugee for eleven years.
Looking For Opportunity
Refugees are not looking for handouts, they are looking for an opportunity to make the most of the talents and skills they possess. Jerry and I began brainstorming. For some reason, they have access to computers, smartphones and internet. They may live in a one room hut, but they have ability.
What could the refugees do with a computer and an internet connection?
Flyers and Social Media Posts Needed
CIRA asked me to head up a committee to design some flyers and social media posts to promote our Community Home Ownership-Wealth Building Day. Jerry said his refugee group had graphic arts skills. We began designing the flyers CIRA needed. There is an eight hour time difference between Indiana and Uganda. Jerry stays up very late as we exchange ideas using WhatsApp messaging, phone calling and email. When I wake up at 3 am checking messages, Jerry has already been working a half day.
Delores Kennedy, President of CIRA, would send me logos, and details of what she wanted to convey about the event. I would forward this to Jerry who would then work on flyer design. We tweaked the flyers until everyone was satisfied.
Fifty of our members received their own printed copy of the flyer. There are social media posts, press releases and media coverage of this event. Delores publicly thanked Jerry and Company for their work to help promote CIRA.
Serving the Least of These
It was not lost on me that the most disenfranchised people I had ever met gave freely of their talents and skills to bless CIRA, an organization who uses their skills and talents to bless the unserved and underserved in the inner city of Indianapolis. It loudly echos in my mind what God says about serving the least of these.
Who Do You Know?
I know many people who have small businesses who need promotional flyers, social media posts, graphic arts, business cards, logos, web design and more. In fact, the builder I help out on occasion needed a flyer. Jerry designed their new spec home flyer and it is posted on Facebook and looks grand.
In Need of a Miracle
Jerry needs a miracle in order to support his family. He has four children, a lovely wife, a foster child and he supports a step-sister. He wants to provide food and education for his children. He would like to earn $600 USD per month in order to do this.
Affordable and a Blessing
A small American business could put Jerry on a retainer for creative services for as little as $100 per month or they could pay per project. Four small businesses could hire Jerry and Company for $150 per month and answer the BIG prayers we have been praying to support Jerry and his family. The American clientele can grow and support many Congolese Refugee families.
In Our Power To Act
God commands us to GIVE for His glory and for the GOOD of His people. Jerry and the refugees are our brothers and sisters in Christ. When we make an offering to the least of these, it is an offering to the Father himself. Benevolent offerings bring abundant blessings in God’s economy. We should not withhold good from those to whom it is due when it is in our power to act. We will be blessed by the measure of kindness and generosity we give.
Are You One Who Is Willing?
Are we eager to serve? I know Jerry is.
“And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices, God is pleased. Give out of a grateful heart.” Hebrews 13:16
Jerry has created a Facebook Business page Those Willing Enterprise, with a portfolio of the refugees’ work. Let’s all think outside the box of how we can utilize a group of willing young refugees to help small business people in America with those creative projects we all need help with.
To Reach Jerry – Facebook-Those Willing Enterprise
Friend him on Facebook Mparha Jerry
Jerry on WhatsApp 256 755 315355
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org (Lukendo Mbokani Mparha Jerry)
Contact Polly Riddell
Would you like to help Jerry in the short term? You can make a simple gift using PayPal. Jerry and I collaborated on the most inexpensive way to send money to Uganda (it is not straightforward.) We are using PayPal and WorldRemit to get the job done. This link will take you there.
For other stories in this series:
Read the entire African Refugee series at TheStoryTeller.net
Polly Riddell writing as G. Polly Jordan is a freelance journalist, connecting people through the stories they tell. Trusting and believing God to bless the connections He orchestrates.