The Word for Today
Our plan to launch a special 12 month edition of The Word for Today and into six new nations in the Pacific (plus transfer Papua New Guinea over to this new format ) has had a bumpy beginning. Because instead of “we did it” we are still doing it…
Yep, we crunched numbers, talked to suppliers, friends of the ministry and key leaders of all our teams, etc. But, right off the bat it was lot more work than expected and continues to fill many hours of our day.
In order to keep prices ‘close’ to our budget we chose to print offshore. The brief was fairly simple, “Please quote to print 12,480 books, 200 pages, with 7 different covers and deliver 1000 here, 1500 there etc.” and “If we want them landed in each nation on or before 1 December 2019 when do you need the artwork?”
Without going into all the details here we are 13 February 2020 and the situation can be summarised as follows…
Timor Leste – their books got delivered to Jakarta! We are currently trying to negotiate to get them released to our guys and shipped to Dili. At this stage “progress” equates to “another AU$2500 might fix the problem”.
Solomon Islands – They might have arrived this week. But we are yet to receive any confirmation -there is still paperwork is to be done so probably some fees coming up.
PNG – These are in Lae and they arrived relatively safely mid January. Woohoo! But, as far as we know, distribution still hasn’t started.
Vanuatu – As of today we are unsure where these are or what fees lie in front of us.
Cook Islands – Still coming. Latest we heard is they are expected to arrive on the 23rd Feb.
Samoa – They have arrived in port but there is the small matter of over AU$500 ‘tax’ to be paid! The local team have applied for exemption.
Fiji – We heard today that they have arrived (Praise the Lord!) but they need the paperwork amended before they can be released.
So if you don’t mind sending up a prayer and asking God to step in we all would greatly appreciate it.
At the end of last year we were able to visit the beautiful Island of Taro in the Solomons and put on a standalone Laef FM station – the island’s first and only radio station. We continue to hear really encouraging reports of how much the station is appreciated and is having a positive impact on the lives of locals. And that is why we do this!
UCB Asia Pacific also funded the purchase and installation of two sets of solar panels to reduce the crippling electricity costs in Honiara and Munda. Actually “funding the installation” in Munda meant spending the day on the roof with a very undersized socket driving 100mm tech screws through the iron roof into the hardwood battens to mount panels. Fortunately it was a cool morning, unfortunately the cool part of the morning was over by the time we started. Fortunately, we had good local support.
Our MOH team in Nepal have made some good progress with helping bring Radio Chhemeki under their wings. This is a long (and sometimes complicated) process but it has started so that too is encouraging.
The last couple of weeks have seen a lot of very encouraging activity in Vanuatu which will hopefully bear good fruit in seeing UCB Vanuatu building into an effective ministry.
Thanks for your ongoing interest, friendship and prayers of support.