My first experience with GoServ Global was our sponsorship of Rose. We started sponsoring her in 2012. We loved sending letters and gifts to her with Ken (DeYoung), and looked forward to the occasional phone call and letters we would receive from her. I was finally able to go to Haiti for the first time in March 2016. For once I was not pregnant or nursing a baby…so I jumped at the opportunity. It was on this trip that my heart was shattered and I was forever changed. I grew up in South Africa, so I was not ignorant of poverty, but I had never experienced it in this magnitude until I went to Haiti for the first time. Yet, despite the extreme poverty that I saw, and the vast number of orphans I met, I was blown away by the Haitian people and their resilience and friendliness. I fell in love with the land. From the majestic mountains, to the clear blue skies, to the enormous palm trees, to the wide expanse of the ocean. It is just beautiful. I also fell in love with 180 orphans that I hold so near and dear to my heart. I have also made very close friends with some Haitians, to the point where we even call each other “family”. My life was forever changed after that first trip.
Since that first trip in 2016 I have tried to visit Haiti at least three times a year. I have been fortunate to have taken my three oldest children with me, and have also been able to go with my husband, Heath. We actually led an FCA group together to Haiti in December 2017. We also now sponsor three children. We continue to sponsor Rose, as well as twin 4-year-old boys, LeLe and LiLi. All three are very much a part of the DeYoung family.
When I am not working on letters of communication between sponsor and child, or collecting much-needed items for our friends in Haiti, or working on the next Sunday School lesson I will teach for Rivenson at Junior Church, I am a “stay-at-home” mother of 5 who coaches Youth Swim Team year-round and also coaches Youth Triathletes in the summer. I love volunteering for GoServ Global within child sponsorship and it has been a joy for me to see how many children are sponsored and the wonderful letters and gifts that are sent between child and sponsor. So, thank you to all the sponsors who make my job such a joy!
My first trip with GoServ Global was to Haiti to help with the dental clinic. To be honest, when I first heard of the trip I wasn’t interested. I had heard stories and saw photos from the many trips before, but if it hadn’t been for the Lord revealing a path there for me, I never would have gone. But somehow in a matter of weeks, HE had made it so clear, it was like there was never a doubt in my heart or mind.
The people of Haiti are strong and resilient. They don’t need ME, they need the power of the Lord. If I can help bring that in some way or another, then He has done good through me. I don’t offer anything special, other than being able to tell the story through images and video with the occasional fix-it project mixed it. Their story is what brings me back. I still think God has a bigger plan for me and Haiti, but he isn’t quite ready to show me. (That or I am not quite ready to admit it)
I run a small marketing/digital media business out of Ventura, IA. Much of my job has me traveling around the country/world shooting photos and video for aviation clients. When I do get home, I enjoy spending time flying at the airport (I am a pilot), and relaxing on the lake with my wife, Sarah. Most of all, I enjoy helping to lead worship behind the drum kit at Zion Lutheran Church.
January 2012, I read an article highlighting the Safe T Home® and GoServ Global’s involvement in Haiti. It was intriguing to see how Iowa companies, Iowa ag people, the Governor’s office, and an Iowa-based charity were involved in this project, but it disturbed me that this cool thing was going on around me and I hadn’t known anything about it nor was I a part of it.
Going to Haiti has changed my thinking on everything I do: how I view my involvement in my local church, my giving, how I worship, my work, and my family. It’s become apparent to me that God wants to use my time, talents, and resources to glorify Him here at home and elsewhere, and to be intentional in instilling eternal values in my family and friends.
My wife Lori and I have farmed in the Burt area for more than 35 years.
When Mark Lee spoke to our church board meeting about the possibility of partnering with him and GoServ Global, I knew God was calling us to be involved beyond prayer. We spoke several times after that meeting and in just a few short months, put together a team and raised all the necessary money to go to Peru.
Our experience with GoServ Global has radically changed my wife and me as individuals and as Cornerstone Church. Those team members who served in Peru with Mark have stepped out in faith and started several bible studies and discipleship groups. We are excited about what God has done in the hearts of our church in the area of missions and look forward to what He has in store for us as we pursue global missions involvement.
I am married to Val and am the Associate Pastor at Cornerstone Church in Boone, IA.
I enjoy meeting people working at a disaster site. There is a trust that can only come from God when, within a few days, we share our life stories – warts and all – and come away with a mutual respect.
Chuck and his wife, Shirley have also helped GoServ Global procure dental equipment for the Haiti Dental Clinic. “Through donations of local dentists and a local dealer, the Haiti Dental Clinic will have an office that will be as efficient as any here in the States,” says Chuck.
Chuck served in the Navy as a dental technician repairing equipment. After his discharge, Chuck & his wife continued selling and servicing dental equipment and now the couple lives on the family farm helping the family who rents their land. Chuck and Shirley live in Sutherland, IA. They have 2 sons & 5 grandchildren.