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Latin America Resource
and Training Center
 

Little Davey Project - Panama 2014
Rod and Sherry Boyd

Little Davey Project - Panama 2014

The ministry of Little Davey Project, under the direction of David and Deborah Kaiser, returned to Panama for their ninth computer campaign. The team of 10, most from Portland Christian Center, bought the smaller components (motherboard, processor, memory and hard drive) in the States and brought them in their carry-on luggage. We purchased the larger components locally: computer case, monitor, DVD drive (one per school), and keyboard and mouse.

Amazingly, the team built all 75 computers in a single day, a feat achieved by the team for the first time last September in the Dominican Republic. Most of the team members are veterans, experienced at one or more of the production stations: Disk imaging, case assembly, first start and quality control, cables, and deployment. We told them at the beginning, “No pressure!” But the grand goal to “build them all in a day” was always before them. By 6:00 PM all 75 computers were boxed and ready for delivery!

The team visited six schools in four days. Three schools near Panama City – 24th of December, Getsemani and Villa Grecia – received a total of 40 computers. In each case we were expanding an existing computer lab, sometimes more than doubling it! About 90 minutes were required to set up each of the new computer labs. All computers were set-up, network cabled and tested.

It was testing week in all Panama schools. This limited the team’s classroom visits, but gave them more time for informal visits with children and teachers. The last task at each school was to invite a group of children to sit at the new computers. The pastor, director and computer teacher joined us for the dedication of the new labs to the service of the school and the Lord. Each school was presented with a group of devotional books for the teachers and a large sack of soccer balls donated by Nike in Panama.

All three of the schools in the Panama City area are also building school facilities. Randy and Lynne Forsyth are coordinating the construction in Getsemani and Villa Grecia. The team was able to see new classrooms finished a few months ago, now filled with children! The new computer lab in Villa Grecia was the pre-kindergarten room just days before.

We were able to visit the Latin America Resource and Training Center property located in the Rana de Oro area, near the Getsemani church and school in Pedregal. We stood at what will be the front door of the first building and prayed for God’s provision and guidance. Construction begins this month on the entrance and road, with the office foundation beginning in July. The building will be completed and occupied by the end of June 2015!

After leaving Villa Grecia on Tuesday, we headed back to the office to load up the other three schools and begin our five hour trip to the northwest part of Panama. The team installed computer labs in the Good Shepherd Schools in Soloy and Boquete on Wednesday and in Penonome on Thursday.

The Soloy Good Shepherd School was the highlight for the team. Walkiria Valdes is the director of this Ngobe Bugle (Guaymi) Indian school located in the mountainous region of northwest Panama. Julio Valdes, Walkiria’s father, started the school in 2008. The 200 children who attend walk great distances to attend classes and receive a hot meal before returning to their homes.

The Soloy school received computers for the first time. When we arrived to the computer lab, we were surprised to see a spacious room with multiple outlets built into the walls. Walkiria told the team, “My father built this classroom believing that God would provide computers.” After a couple of failed attempts to receive a small number of computers from the government, Little Davey was able to equip and entire lab with new, modern computers. During our dedication of the lab, we asked the children how many had used a computer. Not one child had ever even seen a computer!

Julio Valdes passed away suddenly three years ago. He was one of our national church executives, a visionary with a big heart for Panama’s Indian populations. His passing has left a large hole in the work in the country. However, his daughter Walkiria has the same love and passion for the children at Soloy.

The team’s last delivery was on Thursday at the Penonome Good Shepherd School, located along the Pan-American Highway about half way between Soloy and Panama City. We were expanding the computer lab in this school. This school received three computers nine years ago and another 10 five years ago. Amazingly, one of the computers from 2005 was still functioning and 8 of 10 from five years ago. We added 15 new computers that allows entire classes to be in the computer lab at the same time.

You may ask, “Why would you teach computers to poor Indian children in the mountains of Panama?” In addition to teaching traditional subjects, we are committed to teaching computer and English to children and youth in Panama. The only hope of breaking the chains of poverty is transformational education. It’s not enough to educate. The Lord must do His work in the heart in order for knowledge to produce true life change.

Little Davey Project is a major partner in this initiative! Thank you David and Deborah and to the whole 2014 team for your investment in the children and youth of Panama. Looking forward to your return next year… hopefully in Guatemala!
Little Davey Project - Panama 2014

Little Davey Project - Panama 2014

Little Davey Project - Panama 2014

Little Davey Project - Panama 2014

Little Davey Project - Panama 2014

Little Davey Project - Panama 2014

Little Davey Project - Panama 2014

Little Davey Project - Panama 2014

Little Davey Project - Panama 2014

Little Davey Project - Panama 2014

Little Davey Project - Panama 2014

Little Davey Project - Panama 2014