Category Archives: OK Wildfires

All Posts related to the OK Wildfires

Just a word

I was goosed (Ahem – Inspired) by the Holy Spirit the other day when in conversation with our Head Banana. Faith and service does not always have to be so serious.’King David Danced and cavorted in Joy before the Ark as it was wheeled into the City of Jerusalem. Some thought it unseemly for a man in his position to be worshiping God in such a manner. I Beg to differ. Jesus told us that ‘It is only as one of these that you will enter the kingdom of God…’ (Paraphrase)

We Serve Children. But it is only when we think as children and begin to remember what it felt like to BE a child in distress, that we can understand what it means to them when an adult shows open love and uncomplicated concern and expresses same by the bestowing the gift of a brand new toy.

Recently I suffered another of my periodic bouts of depression (Yes, I am mentally disabled at the moment – this is why I have so much free time to give to the Ministry) and the first thing i needed to begin my long road to recovery?

My Mothers arms.
the Second?
Here he is
Yes, a soft toy.
He has been with me since we lost his predecessor to the river in 1968. Yes He is 44 years old!!! a bit battered, and dirty as he has followed me around the world a few times.

What does it say that a grown man nearing his 50’s has a cuddly panda bear by his bedside?
It says that our need for something to hang onto in our time of trial is built into us by our Maker. God gives us a family to show us what unconditional love is, we then share that love with our brothers and neighbors. Only then when we have lived and received love can we KNOW what it is. Only then can we recognize the unconditional Love he pours out on us like a roaring waterfall.

The biggest part of gaining faith is choosing not to be independent but to stand under the full force of the waterfall. Instead of being washed away, the power infuses and strengthens us.

We exist, primarily, as a Ministry, to give back to a child the things they have lost, the very things that are most often overlooked, but are vital to their growth and sense of security. Their toys.

From Mikaela’s recent trip to Manford in Creek Co. OK, comes the most hopeful of photographs. See the child in the foreground with the new toy? The older child got a set of new books and was itching to get away and start reading them.

My Dearest Heavenly Father.
Please help up to understand Your ways. You built us to a plan, to live in the Joy of Your presence in our Spirits.
Help us to put aside our adult attitudes and ‘be like the little children’
Help us to remember what it was like to be a child in need.
Lord help us to let loose a little change each week to Change the lives of the victims of Tornado and Wildfire
Lord help us to remember that the aftermath of a disaster lasts for Years,
Homes and towns are not rebuilt overnight,
Shattered lives and Lost possessions can never be replaced.
Dear Lord, Give us the humility to serve You and these little ones and the sense of joy to dance before you.

You are Always with us in spirit.
In My Lord Jesus’s Holy Name I Pray
Your Servant,
David the Webmaster

October Delivery in Creek County

On 10th October we took a trip to Creek County do make a special delivery

The remains of their second home The remains of the  Old workshop

The new workshop they have built

The Slab where the house used to be
Today is a special day. At last they have piped hot water! They live in this mobile home whilst rebuilding takes place 
 A Winter coat  and a favored T shirt This is what we are about. Toys for Children in Disaster areas

Chrystal January helps more than H4CM! Watch her interview on KOTV Channel 6 Tulsa!

Chrystal January volunteers for us and we are so thankful that she has opened up her home as a donation site for us.  But she is not just helping H4CM, please copy & paste the link below into your browser  and watch the video to see what all Chrystal is doing for the folks in OK!

You can donate items to the recent wildfire victims by calling (405) 474-5505 to arrange a pick up in the Chickasha, Oklahoma City, Norman area. For those in the Tulsa area please email chrystal.l.january@gmail.com to make arrangements to meet. ~your head banana

http://www.newson6.com/story/19315546/green-country-woman-tries-to-help-hometown-heal-after-fires

 

Words from the heart from our Central & Western OK Coordinator

Recent donations towards a great little 12 year olds birthday party.

I posted the note below on  Facebook on Tuesday, August 14, 2012 at 4:50am:

I have been told my whole life that boys don’t cry. Maybe it is true, boys don’t cry but grown men sure do and any man who disagrees should find a child who has had his material possessions reduced to ashes and hand him a new toy or talk to a mother who just wants her child to be happy again; a mother who can’t explain to her child that everything is gone, a mother who despite being a hardworking, God-fearing role model to her children has to prioritize household needs over toys. Whether you are talking to a selfless child worried about his mother and siblings or an expecting mother who just wants what her child to feel normal again you will be moved to tears, tears of deep sadness knowing there is only so much you can do.

I have worked on the front lines of more disasters than any one state should have to endure but honestly I know it is nothing short of a miracle that I have never been personally affected. In May of 2011 our neighbors lost their roof and over half their possessions to a violent tornado that swept through Oklahoma. This tragedy swept through my hometown and continued on its destructive path until it demolished many of the homes of the people I grew up with Dibble, OK. I decided to reach out to Heart 4 Children Ministries and see if they could provide anything for some great kids in the area; it was then that I met a mother who changed my life forever. Her daughter must have been about six. She asked her mother where the house was and the mother mustered an insurmountable amount of courage and explained it was gone. They cried, they wept, and it appeared the healing might be somewhere around another corner when not ten minutes later the little girl asked her mom again where the house was. It was then that I made the life choice to do more than be a casual volunteer and donor. The look on the mother’s face was probably one of the worst things I have ever seen in my life. You could see that sorrow had swept her into perhaps the darkest hole imaginable and while I knew I could never make her life whole again, and while I couldn’t restore this child’s care free childhood there had to be something I could do and I had to do whatever I could.

In August of 2012, wildfires began to consume the Oklahoma landscape at an alarming rate. Without regard for the economics of the family, or the number of children, the fires consumed decades of memories. The fires didn’t care if you were a bum, workaholic or patriotic. Since the tornadoes I had joined Heart 4 Children Ministries and this time I was ready to seek out survivors (I refuse to call them victims. They have waded through trenches, walked through hell on Earth and emerged on the other side, they are survivors.) I had written a few grants, led a few fundraisers and even begged for donations but this would be different. Rather quickly I met two families who needed more than a change of clothes for their kids they needed real help; they needed strangers to step up and go fully embrace the golden rule.

After I spoke to the mothers, I prayed. I prayed for them and their families, I prayed for their safety, I prayed that somehow God would give them some level of joy once again. It sounds selfish but I prayed for myself, I asked the good Father above to grant me the peace of mind to hold it all together. These women, these families didn’t need to hear the sadness in my voice. I prayed that he would give me the strength to stand tall and listen to them and if they wanted to vent, cry, or just ask why that he would tell me what to say because I didn’t have the words. Every family I spoke with gave me a list, some had family and they just needed toys or clothes. I remember one mother saying her family was helping her but they didn’t think the kids needed new toys. She told me, “Our house, our block is in ashes. What are the kids supposed to do? They can’t play in the ash.” Some of the families had lists that were longer but I knew I had to do what I could and I knew that I couldn’t do it alone. I turned to the only two communities I knew, Chickasha and Facebook and I began to ask for donations.

I don’t know how many people stepped up just yet. I have kept records but there will be time to tally those, for now the survivors come first. The Bookstore at 3rd and Minnesota offered to serve as a drop off site for donations, for that Diane will always have a special place in my book. Keepin’ It Sweet heard  that one of the kids was about to turn 12 and they stepped up and volunteered to make him a cake for his upcoming birthday party. When Twisted Reality heard that the boys wanted school supplies that were for boys and if anyone could spare it maybe some Wii games they went to work gathering them. Thomas has collected 12 Wii games at this time and is still trying. Another great random act of kindness occured when a resident of Chickasha stepped up and bought a brand new bike from Wal-Mart. For all the tears of sadness and sorrow the best moments of this year might be hearing the joy in a mother’s voice when she knows one of our child’s needs are met and yes I said need.

I am hesitant to include this, it is a quote from a mother of one of the children, I removed anything that identifies her out of a concern for her privacy and if she wants it deleted she knows who she is and she can message me and it will be gone but it puts into words something I imagine not everyone can.

“It means the world to us!.. People don’t realize the effect on kids that go through this kind of thing. I may never know what my own son goes through because they are just too young to have words for their feelings. My son always had nice things and has been taught to take care of them so replacing them with half broken dirty missing pieces is hard to process for him. Although he is accepting the few he has gotten and been happy to have them… It is the hardest thing for a mother, to see your child have nothing and it be so out of our control, not our fault, and nothing we can do because we need things like a house and dishes. We did not make a series of bad decisions; this was just something that happened. My son is suffering and I can do little to nothing to make it better. That is the worst feeling in the world. If it weren’t for you and your donors what effect would this have on him? Would he see no reason to try and achieve his potential because it just disappears one day? People don’t realize the effects mentally this has on children and every one of them handles it differently. You have taught him compassion, giving and love that he may have never known through all you are doing for him and like I said before, thank you is not even close.”

I appreciate everyone who has donated and I am reluctant to ask again because I know we all are having tough financial times but the need is too great for me not to ask. So will you please once again donate to the cause even if it is small? Hot Wheels are $1.00 at Gorilla Tools and honestly a nice new shiny car brightens makes a difference. If you haven’t donated I have a post on my wall with current needs also for the child with the Birthday card I am really wanting to give him numerous $5.00 gift cards to show him that numerous people do care, if you send one I would love if it were in a card. I hope if we take anything from this series of tragedies that we hold what is dear to us just a little closer.

WILDFIRE DEVASTATION IN OK: A total of 886 homes damaged or destroyed according to Oklahoma Wildfire Info!

Reposted from Oklahoma Wildfire Info Facebook Page:

“A good source just told me that a total of 886 homes were either destroyed or damaged in the fires. We are dedicated to continue to update this facebook page and provide resources to help see everyone reach the other side of recovery. Stick around! The work is just getting started! LT”

Bananas, my heart is just breaking for the children in my state of OK. THREE HUNDRED AND NINETY THREE HOME DESTROYED…A TOTAL OF 886 HOMES DESTROYED OR DAMAGED IN THE FIRES…It is going to be a long road back…most of OK is in a severe drought while parts of OK are in an extreme drought! How can you help?
1.) Pray for rain.
2.) Pray for all the families that have lived through the terror of these fires, especially the children and are now trying to put their lives back together. Many only had the clothes on their back when they were forced to leave their homes.
3.) Give if you can. JJ William Francais, our Central & Western OK Coordinator posts needs updates often. Check to see if you may have any of the items on the list. On his post he lists where you can drop off items. If you would just like to donate go to our website
http://heart4childrenministries.org and go to the Donate page.

Heartbreaking photo of a Mom & child after one of so many fires took their home

Here is the latest needs list from him:
The toys are NEEDED to help occupy little children because they can’t be around the ash.
3-6 month old boy clothes, Baby boy clothes 18-24 months
Really NEED Diapers(NB, 3,4) & Wipes
Baby Shampoo
We need school supplies for several of the kids:
Boys: 3X5 Cards, Composition note books
We have (2) 12 or soon to be 12 year olds here are some things they would love:
39 Clues Series (books) and the Kane Chronicles (Books)
Hot Wheels, and Nerf Toys
Anything Pokemon related, cards would be amazing
The 12 year old with an upcoming birthday would love to have Super Mario Brothers (Wii)
JJ Francais

The children in OK need help and Oklahomans are stepping up as we always do for our own, however, this is a lot bigger than any of us thought it would be and still we are not out of the woods.

Blessings and thanks as always for your continued support ~your head banana

A video of one of the many devastating fires in our state!

If you want to see why Heart 4 Children Ministries is collecting donations for children in OK, watch the video at the bottom of this post. Credit for the video goes to Tornado Valley Video shared by the Facebook page: Oklahoma Wildfires. Prayers to all the Fire Fighters & Fire Survivors.

After FEMA toured the hardest hit OK counties, it is determined that over 380 homes have burned and more than 100,000 acres have been burned! This is heartbreaking to this Oklahoman!

If you can help, please go to our General Donation link below and pick one of the amounts to give. Any and all donations are appreciated and tax deductible.

~thanks mikaela

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News from our new Central & Western OK Coordinator re: need help for wildfire survivors

This news comes from William Francis our Fund Raising Chairman who is now also our Central & Western OK Coordinator.

We are helping numerous kids across the State but some needs are not being met and we would like to see what we can do.
We really need clothing for two boys ages 2M and 16M and anything you can donate for that family
We are still looking for Nerf toys for a soon to be 12years old boy, also if you can donate water guns it would be great.
We still need school supplies for an 11 and 12 year old. You can drop off items at 3rd and Minnesota in Chickasha at the Bookstore (open 9-4, M-F) that just moved there or you can call (405) 474-5505.

Thanks ~Mikaela