Fuller Center General

By Chris Johnson,
Director of Communications

It's finally starting to feel a little bit like fall here in Georgia. This is often a time when our covenant partners hammer out plans for the next year and ramp up the end-of-year fundraising efforts to make those plans a reality.

But that doesn't mean the hammers have stopped swinging. In fact, one of the biggest events this month was last week's completion of The Fuller Center's 56-home Lambi Village in Haiti. Lambi was a great plan — building an entire community where families were full partners in the building process and not the recipients of the kind of well-meaning handouts that have unintentionally crippled the Haitian people.

With apologies to George Peppard's character Hannibal on TV's "The A-Team" (my favorite show back in 8th grade), I love it when a plan comes together. If you didn't get that, congratulations, you haven't watched too much bad TV. Haiti has seen plenty of plans made and plans fizzle, often before they even got off the ground. But Lambi stands as a testament to The Fuller Center's determination to follow through on plans and to help people help themselves.

Click here for the complete report on last week's dedication of Lambi Village.

Now, here's a sampling of other happenings in October. Click the links for full details:

By Chris Johnson,
Director of Communications

In the past few months, the Ebola crisis has gotten more and more attention — and rightfully so. It's tragic to see the toll it has taken on thousands of families in West Africa and terrifying to think of the “what ifs.” What if we can't stop it? What if we can't contain it? What if it mutates and becomes more than we can handle?

When I think of the “what ifs,” here's one you may not have thought about: What if the Ebola outbreak had begun in a Haitian tent city with families crammed together in unsanitary conditions, more than four years after the devastating earthquake there? I believe it would have be even more devastating and would spread even faster.

Here's another “what if”: What if we stopped such outbreaks before they started? One critical element in that equation is decent, healthy housing. That's why we remain committed to helping our covenant partner in Sierra Leone, in the heart of the outbreak, as they strive to provide decent homes for families and move them away from the unhealthy slums of crowded cities like Freetown. If you would like to contribute to that cause, click here.

Housing is a key component to having healthy families and healthy communities. Studies have clearly shown that children who grow up in a decent home are healthier, happier and do better in school. That's why we're thrilled with each Fuller Center home built or repaired. And we're even more thrilled to see entire communities of Fuller Center homes.

And that's what we're seeing in Haiti, where an entire healthy community of decent homes will be completed during a Global Builders work trip Oct. 19-26 of this month. Haiti is a nation desperately in need of the kind of help The Fuller Center provides — help that empowers instead of creating a culture of dependency. This community sets the standard by which all nonprofits should operate. President David Snell will join volunteers on site for this momentous occasion and will share his thoughts from the experience with you. Click here to meet some of the dedicated volunteers who've helped make this possible and who will be revisiting Haiti this month to help us complete the place we call Lambi. They are some pretty impressive, service-minded folks!

Now, let's catch you up on some of the Fuller Center news you may have missed in September. (Like us on Facebook to make sure you never miss any news.) Click the links for each story:
 

By Aaron Carmichael,
Chief Development Officer

Well the injury bug has struck again.  Perhaps it’s my age.  Perhaps I’m pushing myself too hard.  Perhaps I’m pushing myself too hard for my age.  But whatever the cause, here I sit with a twisted back and bruised ego.  This time I need the attention of a trained medical professional.  Seriously, should I be able to stare straight down at the heels of my feet?  I don’t feel like I’m the king of the road right now, I kind of feel like I AM the road. 

By Aaron Carmichael,
Chief Development Officer

I believe spring has finally sprung here in Indiana.  This past week I have been able to take my workout, at least part of it, outside.  We’ve had some amazingly gorgeous weather and I just couldn’t wait to get outside and enjoy it with a few evening jogs. 

But getting off the dreadmill, I mean treadmill, and hitting the pavement isn’t without its perils.  There are a few things you don’t have to worry about at the gym ... like traffic.  Do you remember the old Atari video game Frogger?  Imagine the little frog jumping through traffic with running shoes on ... that’s me.  And of course there are unfenced dogs in my community lining every block waiting for an expectant jogger to come by.  My first outside jog was a good 4 minutes faster than my treadmill time.  It’s funny how fast you can be when you’re running for your life.

By Aaron Carmichael,
Chief Development Officer

I’ve heard that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over but expecting different results.   Have you ever found yourself in this cycle?  We are creatures of habit and creatures who seek comfort.  Both lend themselves to a path of routine. 

My exercise routine had become just that, a routine.  Lately, I haven’t been getting the results I had hoped for.  I’ve been working really hard but the weight isn’t coming off.  After talking to a few experts in exercise, I decided it was time to change up the routine.  I’ve had good results but it was time to move on to something a little different, something a little outside my comfort zone….something exhausting.  I can’t expect the same results I received early on by doing the same thing over and over.

INTERVALS ... it’s a dirty word to me.  But it is working.  After dropping 4 pounds in three days, I think I’ve escaped exercise insanity, at least until my body adjusts and I’ll have to shock it with a new routine.  But I’ll be watching out for that.