We have some real gems here in Kitsap County - several I am sure you have never heard of and I won't call them out here! I surely don't want to be the one to give them away, selling out their humble hearts and generosity. Suffice it to say, that God crossed my path with some pretty wonderful people, and one in particular is a really neat guy who is a blessing wherever he goes.
His drive in our community and in our world to take care of the less fortunate - specifically those who seek redemption for mistakes they have made, is so commendable. Our gratefulness that he reached out to us, to join in partnership at a couple of different levels is a blessing that we could not have ever planned on our own! But God did this - and if you know me at all, you know that when God opens a door, I tend to bolt right through!
This is what has happened with our friend! God opened a door for him and he stepped through. He started an organization that reaches out to veterans locally who have run into a little trouble with the law- both male and female - and he has created a space for them to go, be comfortable, with dignity- while they seek to restore themselves back into society's graces. They may have to visit their probation officer weekly or monthly, they may have to go to Drug Court or they may have some other legal obligation. And what helps them to be successful is that they have a place to call home; a place from which they can fulfill their legal obligations.
When our friend reached out to Seeds of Grace though, it was not for any purpose having to do with these homes. In fact, it was because God laid on his heart a desire to go to Guatemala and plant seeds... There's a whole other story that will be explored in a later issue, but I bring that up to point out just how God uses one thing to get us to do another. It was through the meeting about Guatemala that we discovered our common goal to help veterans and offer a vocational program to those whose experiences in the legal system have left them without marketable skills because of their conviction.
Then for us - the plan began to clarify... Let's create an onsite vocational program for those in the home who would like to participate, that will offer them marketable, living wage skills, while providing food for the home, and another distribution organization in the community. AND let's include the first Seeds of Grace aguaponics system. WOW! Say that again!
We are going to create a vocational program for veterans that will teach the skill of building and operating a fully integrated aquaponics and garden system along with business basics and and Bible Fellowship. This system will be incorporated into a permaculture garden and together they will not only feed the residents of the home, but the excess will also bless one of our local distribution agencies that serve the underprivileged in our community.
This is an amazing step forward for Seeds of Grace, as we had not anticipated being able to bring an aquaponics system to our region for quite some time. But your support, as well as the grant we received, and our generous friend, has given us the means to walk through another door that God has opened for us.
If you would like to join in and be a part of that team, we welcome you! Whether you would like to learn more about aquaponics and help plan and build the project, or if you would like to guide the residents of the home through a business mentorship, please click HERE to volunteer. If you would like to support that garden and others in the community like it, please click HERE. Veteran's Transitional House To Be Location of First Aguaponics Vocational Project for Seeds of Grace