Over the last five years, the Two Pennies Ministry has done a host of projects and touched hundreds of lives both here in the United States and in Ghana. We’ve had the pleasure of seeing hope come alive, lives transformed, prayers answered. We’ve dug the foundation of a church, and an orphanage. We’ve provided life-changing surgeries, led pastoral conferences and given scholarships. Most importantly, we’ve seen how God uses ordinary people to do extraordinary things. It has been humbling to work alongside people who make a few dollars each day for back-breaking labor and it has been a joy to be prayed over by an entire congregation of God-loving people.
Our latest project has been years in the making. Over two years ago the students at Sycamore Trails elementary school in Bartlett, IL, sent over 7,000 books to their pen-pals at the Katakyasie school in Ghana.
Little did they realize the avalanche this would begin. In the spring of 2015, a team from First Baptist Church and Judson University travelled to the school to see how the books were being used. We discovered that the books were still sitting in the boxes that we had sent. The teachers were unsure about how to use them and needed direction. Some of our team members began to organize books, while others worked with the teachers. We were blessed to have a strong team of educators from Judson and from other Illinois schools (school district U-46 and others) to focus on instruction. That spring we laid the foundation for what we hoped would be a continuing partnership to help bolster the reading instruction given to the students and instill a love for books. Even before we had left, we had the pleasure of seeing knots of students huddled around books or
individuals with their noses buried in the pages. They marveled at the bright, attractive pictures and were intrigued enough to try and read the words.
In December of 2015 we sent another team to continue the training. They worked with teachers and students and were excited to see that some of the books had been well-used and that some students could even pick out their favorite titles. Inspired by what they had found, they scouted out a possible location for a future library. Over the course of several months, first Judson University, then Southbury Elementary in Oswego raised money to refurbish an crumbling old
structure into a new library for the school. When our team returned in March of this year, we began the process of remodeling this building. A week later, we left with little more than one wall rebuilt and some structural improvements. One of the most amazing pieces of the journey was watching school children work to carry 45 pound blocks up a hill to build their own library.
Since then, our partners in Ghana have continued the work. The foundation was shored up, the wall cracks repaired. The entire exterior was stuccoed and then painted. The roof was put in place, electrical was installed and doors were added to secure the location. See the pictures below for the amazing transformation. It is such a joy to see how far it has come. Follow us as we continue to see the impact of our Love, Service and Sacrifice.
Two Pennies Ministry is a 501(c)3 charity, EIN 83-3269475. We can be found at 1735 W Highland Ave, Elgin, IL.