We are a Christian based organization that believes that the love of Jesus found in the gospel of salvation in the Bible has the power to bring hope to all children and peoples of the world. We believe that we are the hands and feet of this love. We come alongside our Congolese brothers and sisters in serving orphans, vulnerable children, and families in DRC. We believe children are precious and loved by God; they should be in families, not orphanages.
Reeds of Hope began as “Tumaini” in 2010 when Holly Mulford and her husband were living in DRC. They first visited the Save the Children orphanage in February 2010 and learned of funding shortages which left babies and children extremely malnourished and underdeveloped. Very committed and hard-working mamas did their best to keep the children alive, but sometimes only two mamas were working with 40 infants and toddlers.
Others came alongside Holly and her husband and Tumaini (meaning “hope” in Swahili) began to regularly bring formula, powdered milk, and additional staff to the orphanage. Eventually, we added regular sponsors to support individual babies and older children. In addition, we provided the trimester school fees for children who had moved out of the orphanage and lived with their family members.
At the end of 2012, Tumaini received 501c3 status and officially became Reeds of Hope. The board of Reeds of Hope consists of men and women who all have a love for eastern DRC and a desire to serve orphaned and vulnerable children; most have visited and some have adopted children from Congo.
The name Reeds of Hope was inspired by the story of Moses in the Bible. He was left in a basket of reeds in order to save his life. This same slender reed of hope is what brings many fathers or extended family members to the orphanage after the mothers die in birth—that the children might have a chance at life. This hope is also hope in a God that loves and cares for children and their families, especially those in desperate and heart-wrenching circumstances. We honor this hope by supporting these children until they can be reunited with their immediate or extended families or with other loving, long-term care options that are part of their churches and/or their local communities.
In January 2015, after 5 years, we decided it was time to transition from our work at Save the Children orphanage to Family Bethlehem. Family Bethlehem has offered a home to orphaned and vulnerable children for the past 20 years; they bring hope to children whose families are in crises or have fallen apart. We also had an opportunity to partner with Emmanuel Training Center in Kinshasa mid 2015. We sponsor young mothers to join the One Thread Project as well as providing computer training skills for older orphans.
We are honored and humbled by working with the Congolese people and continue to be grateful for God’s guidance as He directs us. Those who partner with us in DRC inspire and encourage us daily. We are excited what the future holds as we come alongside the incredible Congolese people as they serve the vulnerable children and families in their midst.
Thank you for coming alongside us in our work in DRC. The children we serve are resilient, joyful, courageous, and brave souls who deserve a healthy future in which they can be cared for by their families, thrive in a loving, safe environment, participate in their communities and churches, and attend school. We pray for the peace of eastern DRC and the end to conflict, so that this hope an be fully realized.
What We've Achieved
- formula for babies (4,750 cans of formula, $38,000)
- powdered milk for older children (108 50-lb sacks of fortified milk, $16,000)
- staff and mamas to care for the children ($12,600, to improve the ratio from 2 mamas per 35-50 babies and children under 5 years old to 5-6 mamas per 40 children)
- school fees for the 77 children who have left the orphanage and live with families ($18,000 including uniforms, notebooks)
- a wall around the orphanage–enabling staff to grow a large garden to feed the children, keep chickens, rabbits and a cow, and to make the orphanage safer and more secure ($6000)
- a newly rebuilt kitchen that had been falling apart due to age and the earthquake that caused structural damage in 2008 ($3000)
- school fees for 80+ of the children living at Family Bethlehem ($7,200)
- tuition fees for 9 university students who grew up at Family Bethlehem ($17,000)
- Funds to rebuild Family Bethlehem after a massive fire ($15,000)
- Sponsorship for 5 women at Emmanuel Training Center ($2,500)
- Sponsorship for 5 orphaned young adults to attend computer training ($500)
- Addition of 2 social workers to support our programs
- Training sessions for our staff in social work and business development
Reeds of Hope is a registered 501c3 non-profit organization