Makarios family, please join us in congratulating and celebrating these members of our staff. We are happy to announce the graduation of 10 of our teachers. Because of your investment in our local staff, their hard work has been rewarded with a diploma.
Our students are incredibly blessed to have these teachers as role models. Each one of our teachers are fierce in prayer, humble in spirit, and passionate about the future of their students.
We are so honored to have them on our team, and so humbled that this is the way we get to end 2017. We are thankful to celebrate these teachers, and thankful to the entire Makarios family for making this celebration possible.
To sponsor a Local Staff member, or learn more about our program, CLICK HERE.
MEET FRAMELY YENYETE
A 23 year old mother of 3 from Tamarindo
Framely has faced many hardships in her lifetime, especially in the recent passing of her husband. Her story, her strength, and her involvement with Makarios has inspired us to recognize the challenges our students and families overcome everyday. She has reminded us of the hope that is found in community, and the importance of the work we do with your help.
Framely’s parents are from Santo Domingo, where her mom was a housekeeper and her father worked in construction. As a child, she lost her younger brother, and 4 years ago she lost her father. At 16 years old, she became a wife. By attending the nighttime high school program for adults, she was able to finish high school despite the challenges around her. In search of a better life, Framely and her husband moved to Montellano.
The hardest challenge she has faced is what she is facing today. Framely lost her husband a few months ago and is in the midst of adjusting to life without him and thinking towards the future of her family. In addition to grief, there are pressing burdens that make daily life more overwhelming. Her husband’s sudden passing left her with no access to the basic health insurance they previously had. Without a job, she was forced to move to her mom's home, which currently houses Framely's sister, brother, mother, nieces, and nephews. In the last few months, Framely has faced hostility from her late husband's side of the family concerning her ability to take care of her children. Through the difficulty, God has provided people to help her. Her older brother has taken on the responsibility of caring for his entire family. With very little, he has been the direct support of his own family, his mom, sister, and five children. Her church has been a blessing for her and her family, and her husband's former employer has offered her support through the last few months.
MAKARIOS AS AN ANSWER TO PRAYERS
At the age of 17, Framely became a believer. For the next 4 years, she was committed to her faith but has since struggled. A couple of years ago, Framely applied to Makarios and put her children's names on the waiting list.
After the death of her husband, Makarios’ family ministry visited Framely at her home to share the news that her daughter, Maily, would be a member of Makarios’ kinder class. To Framely, this moment was a representation of God’s promises. The timing and the nature of this news helped her realized He has not and never will abandon her.
However, our Family Empowerment program did not stop there. Makarios was not only interested in educating her daughter, but wanted to invite her whole family into our family. We wanted to invest in her.
MAKARIOS IMPACTING HER FAITH
We asked Framely to describe to us what her experience has been as a part of the Makarios Family.
“It was recently, in a Family Empowerment meeting where I heard Laurie Majcher, the director of the school, who was invited to speak to the families. She said something that really caught my attention and my heart. Laurie was describing the way we as parents become mirrors for our kids. That’s when I became aware of the impact I can have on my kids. I don’t want my kids to be led to the wrong path because of me. Whatever they see me do will teach them something. I AM A MIRROR TO MY KIDS. It really challenged me to rethink my journey with the Lord.”
MAKARIOS IMPACTING THE FAMILY
“I am so grateful for Makarios.”
Framely described that her daughter, Maily, comes home from school every day explaining something new she learned in class. Just as often as she talks about her classroom experience, she tells stories of how the staff outside the classroom loves and cares for her, not just her teachers.
“ It makes me hopeful that my daughter receives that kind of treatment outside of our home.”
Framely has been regularly attending Family Empowerment meetings. Recently, she participated in a parent training she heard of through Makarios, given by a local organization called CONANI. She learned some new strategies to implement in parenting; they have been really helpful in keeping family routines. Framely said, “When I told Maily that we were going to do a chore chart, she immediately asked what her duties for the morning were.”
Framely’s story is unique, but the challenges she faces are common amongst families in our communities. We believe in the power of relationships, and the light they can bring to people going through any struggle. The challenges we see point us to the power of God and the hope we find in Him.
“God gives me Hope, and He also gives me hope through my kids.
I believe that with Him I am going to be okay.”
You’ve celebrated with us all year: praying with us as we broke ground on our school expansion, launched our Family Empowerment program, casted new vision for all of our programs, and reached our school’s 10th Anniversary. While there is so much growth to celebrate in this season, we would like to celebrate differently than we have in the past.
This year, instead of planning and hosting the gala, we are directing all of our resources to develop our programs and our people.
There is no gala.
There is no raffle, no auction, no photographer, no food and dancing, no bowties and dresses. We are asking you to consider all of the expenses you would spend to join us at the live event, and reallocate that gift to help us reach our goal. Our ask to you is simple: stay home, and support Makarios.
1. RAISE $50,000
2. FILL 25 REMAINING STUDENT SPONSORSHIPS
So please, Makarios Family...
Instead of buying a ticket to our event, donate to help us achieve our goals.
Instead of purchasing the perfect outfit for the party, sponsor a student.
Instead of making hotel reservations, donate to help us reach our goal of $50,000.
Instead of filling a gala table with your friends, gather together and join us in our mission to
love, educate, and empower.
The Makarios mission is to love, educate, and empower. Our work is driven by our vision to see communities serve Jesus Christ, while working to end generational poverty. While our mission and vision guide us forward, it can be hard to see the big picture. Having values written down is not the hard part; the challenge comes when we hold ourselves accountable to aligning our behavior and the values we have committed to. Our values are the stepping stones to the vision that is set before us.
This month, we looked inward and asked: who amongst us is living out the Makarios values? Each one of our program directors recognized one person on staff who is living out a specific value on a daily basis.
Adrienne from the makarios School
Relationship (n.) the way in which two or more people or things are connected, or the state of being connected.
Relationship is a value of Makarios. We initiate, build, and grow healthy and empowering relationships. Enter many of the Makarios staff, but today I will mention Adrienne Christian. Adrienne works with the school and Family Empowerment and Group Ministry in the summer. Adrienne is the one spending the night in Chichigua with one of the missionary youth because her relationship is intentional with Chichigua and with Myah. Adrienne is the one who inspires people from Makarios to lead workshops to bless the school, Quisqueya, she worked with prior to Makarios in the south of the island—because she is committed to Makarios and Quisqueya.
Adrienne is passionate for the relationship that reading and writing has on the educational development of a child. This is not usually just a sterile process. With many of our kids an interruption in their emotional development has impeded their academic development. It takes relationship to melt those walls.
It is not only the students that benefit from the talents of Adrienne—our school has been revolutionized by Adrienne's knowledge and ability to share it with the teachers. Our school as a whole has been able to focus on how to creatively include aspects of reading and writing into the classroom. It is Adrienne's relationship with the staff that allows her bring some very different ideas to our educational table and be heard by the staff.
The greatest relationship that Adrienne shares in is her relationship with her Creator God. Like the definition states there is definitely a connection, there is regard for each other and Adrienne behaves in a manner that considers her Lord. Even the verse she has chosen for the closing of her email speaks to the priority of relationship in her life.
1 Peter 4:10-11
As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
Adrienne is a talented gift from the Lord to the ministry of Makarios and her embodiment of relationship is beautiful to see. She loves the Lord and serves Him faithfully which is turned into sweet blessings for the Mak staff, students, school, and beyond.
Laurie Majcher, Principal of Makarios School
Bernabe from family Empowerment
The person that has embodied our value of humility within Family Empowerment is Bernabe.
He was my mentor before coming to work for Makarios, and was the director of a Compassion Project for 10 years. Yet, he was willing to work as a team and come under my leadership with respect.
He is spiritually mature and is a role model for our team.
Benjamin Nunez, Director of Family Empowerment
Lucia from Group Ministry
For the Group Ministry, we chose Lucia as an example of integrity. She is in charge of cleaning the Mak House and preparing rooms for the teams that come to serve at Makarios and is a huge blessing to our ministry. We absolutely could not do what we do without her. Lucia embodies integrity in the way she does her job because she does things with excellence all the time. She works extremely hard, often stays later than expected and goes above and beyond her duties in caring for our teams and expecting nothing in return. Oftentimes she can be spotted standing on the kitchen countertop dusting the window ledges with a paintbrush in an effort to make sure the house is as clean as it can be. When teams are at the house, she makes 20 to 40 beds every day and takes the time to match colored sheets and pillowcases for each guest, again showing her attention to detail in ministering to our teams.
She also shows integrity in her daily life outside of work. She faithfully serves at her church and others around her. Lucia is a seamstress and loves to sew and make clothing etc. Recently someone donated some fabric for her to use. Instead of making something for herself or for her home, she took the material and made several dresses for young girls in Haiti that she knew were in need. Her integrity can also be seen in her family. She and her husband, Joel have raised 5 children, and they all live their lives with integrity, honor and faith in the Lord. They are respectful, trustworthy and great examples to everyone around them.
We love Lucia for many reasons, but integrity is one of her most apparent assets. Without her, the Group Ministry would not be the same!
Doug & Margaret Beck, Directors of Group Ministry
This month, we are celebrating 10 years of our Makarios school, with a total of 13 years as a non-profit in the Dominican Republic! We believe it’s essential to understanding where we have been in order to celebrate where we are now and where we are headed. Our reflections on all that God has done have lead us to share with you the story of how we began, give you a glimpse into Makarios’ first year, and share with you some exciting news.
IN THE BEGINNING ...
Makarios founder, Sharla Megilligan, was only 28 when she took the leap of faith to start the non-profit we know and love today. It was 2004, and she had lived in the DR for years, falling in love with the people and the culture.
In her time living in the DR, Sharla learned that a low percentage of kids were going to high school and even lower were graduating. Public schools in the big cities were decent, but in the rural areas, they were terrible. What you might find is one teacher with 40 students, and very limited supplies. If teachers didn’t show up, there was no school. Students copied things off of the board to memorize but many of them not literate, they were just copying what they saw. In the early year of Makarios, there were students who had attended public school for years and couldn’t write their name.
Sharla researched the need over the four years that she taught at Santiago Christian School and had a notebook full of information to get started. She went to grad school and got a masters in public affairs with an emphasis in nonprofit management. A friend of hers offered a $5000 matching grant to get us off the ground, so she reached out to her communities raised the $5000 to match. She started there. That was enough to cover Brian and Bethany’s (Makarios' first teaching staff members) pay and her own flight to the DR. Many of those gifts became monthly. They collected school supplies and showed up in the communities to teach after some planning meetings with parents and local leaders.
The school began as a tutoring program to supplement public school education for students during the half day they were not in school. In a leaning house in Pancho Mateo, students, teachers, and surrounding communities witnessed beautiful things happen in that house. Our very own Cakito was one of those students.
Over the next few years, Sharla and the Makarios team planted roots with people in the communities. They learned from people around them, they build relationships, they prayed. Eventually, they decided to open up the Makarios school in the center of the communities they were serving. That handful of students has grown to over 170, and our staff has multiplied just as quickly. We are one big family, dreaming together and striving for goals together.