Well it’s done… I have taken the biggest leap of faith thus far in this journey. Thursday night I turned in my letter of intent to retire from the Reed City Fire Department on October 31st. Friday morning, I turned in my letter of retirement for Osceola County EMS as of October 23rd. It is very exciting but very stressful and a little scary at the same time. I have been working for the county for almost 23 years. It is a very big step to just walk away. This means that I am 2 pay checks away from being unemployed with no foreseeable income (I am a decade away from being eligible to collect on my pension). This means that I will be dependent on you for your prayer and financial support for the continuation of Kelby’s Kids!
My plan at this time is to prepare as quickly as possible for the move to Haiti. I was initially going to try to go to Haiti for the immediate relief work after Hurricane Matthew devastated Haiti. The information is just now really starting to come in and the devastation is very extensive. The death toll is climbing by the hour. There is almost nothing left of entire communities. Instead of going down for a couple of weeks and further delaying my commitment to full time work in Haiti, I have decided to just get down there as soon as possible. By the time I get to Haiti, most of the short term relief workers will be heading back to the US to return to their jobs. I can pick up things as they leave and maintain the long term issues that will come from this latest disaster in Haiti.
I told you earlier that I needed about $1,500.00 in monthly support before I could get to Haiti. This is still true but I feel called to serve as soon as possible in the wake of Matthew. I currently have $880.00 in monthly support pledged. This will hopefully cover most of my expenses to live in Haiti during this start up period if I keep life very basic. It will provide little funding for the supplies and medications that I will need to get the clinic up and running and to go out with relief teams and serve the people hardest hit. It will take additional ongoing funding to support the work of the clinic and medical supplies to provide disaster relief. At this point, support is only going toward ministry expenses that meet those requirements for reimbursement. All of my personal expense in both Haiti and Michigan will have to come from my savings.
With that being said, I will need an average of $1,500 per month for operational expenses long term. I would like to get $1,000 a month for standard ongoing medical expenses, which is not much when you get into large quantities of medications and supplies for a clinic. That is a basic budget of $2,500 per month. So, until I exceed $3,000 a month in support I will not be able to address any kind of compensation or wage to cover my expenses with my Board of Directors. So in the interim, I will be burning through my savings which I was really hoping would last me for years and not just a few months. Now more than ever it would encourage me to know that you are stepping out in faith with me so together we can serve Kelby’s Kids in Haiti.
I know there is much economic uncertainty in this country. But there is certainty in Haiti, and it’s that times are very difficult and bleak for so many. If you have been considering supporting Kelby’s Kids, the time is now! I would like to hear from you to know your commitment even if it will be several weeks before you could start to donate so I can better plan how together WE will help the people and children of Haiti. There is an immediate need for both one-time gifts for the immediate relief needs as well as long term monthly support. Many of you have indicated the desire to support me once I have things “up and going.” That time is now! The $880.00 in monthly support only represents 12 people. So if we just add another 36 people I would have a complete budget!
There are many ways to get involved. You can go to my web site www.KelbysKids.org to the support page. There are FOUR donation options. One is a Stripe account where you can do one time donations by credit or debit card. Second is by PayPal. You do not need to have a PayPal account to give, just a credit or debit card. This is the current method to give monthly support. When you click on the donation button by PayPal there is a box next to the amount you enter to donate that says “make this recurring monthly.” You just check that box. There has been some trouble with this for several people. I have found that PayPal is a different format when you are using a mobile device as well as with Google Chrome. You need to use internet explorer or another format to open PayPal through my web site and then that box will pop up for you on the first screen. The third option is to set up an auto bill pay account through your financial institution. If you would like more information on this please contact me at Kelby@KelbysKids.org A fourth option is to mail a check made out to Kelby’s Kids to P.O. Box 57, Reed City, MI49677-0057. If you do not want to take the time to make monthly donations, you can do annual or biannual donations. Just contact me so I can divide the amount you will give so I can anticipate an average monthly budget.
I have so very much to do to get ready to move to Haiti. I am working hard to be in Haiti by the first full week in November. Your prayers for a smooth and stress free transition would be greatly appreciated.
I have truly been blessed by your outpouring of support thus far. I know that this will continue and together we can touch the lives of so many in Haiti. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me. Thank you again. You and your generous support makes all this possible!
I am humbled to serve.
Until no child dies,
President of Kelby’s Kids Inc.