We got these translations today from various newspaper articles in Varazdin and Banja Luka. Thought you might like to here from someone other than me tonight. You can call them, "guest bloggers". The first is the local paper here in our little town.
The Church of Jesus Christ helps Caritas of Varaždin Diocese
Soup Kitchen receives a donated stove worth 17 thousand Kunas
Couple Jim and Debby Erickson, from the American federal state of Utah, donated on behalf of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints a big gas stove to the Soup Kitchen of Caritas of Varaždin Diocese. The stove is worth 17 thousand Kunas and thanks to it the capacity of the Soup Kitchen was increased significantly, up to 500 portions a day.
Spouses Debby and Jim, representatives of the Church of Jesus Christ for Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, came to Varaždin three months ago for the sake of humanitarian work and networking with humanitarian organizations in order to help those in need. According to Mr. Jim Erickson, the procurement of 250 wheelchairs from China that will arrive in the spring of next year as a donation to the Diocese Caritas for the disabled is in progress.
This one is from Banja Luka, Bosnia newspaper. No wonder when we walked into a restaurant last week the waiter said, "I saw a picture of you and an article in the newspaper, thank-you for coming to Bosnia and helping our people."
Americans donated the stoves
Representatives of the humanitarian organization of ‘Latter Day Saints’ – Jim and Debby Erickson - from the USA have donated two stoves to the soup kitchen of the Red Cross.
- This is not the first time that the LDS Charities helped us. At the very beginning they donated a kettle and a refrigerator. This time they bought us two stoves – a gas and an electric one – worth around 7000 marks – said the general secretary of the Red Cross in Banja Luka Mrs. Željkica Savić.
The donors from the USA expressed their great satisfaction that they are able to help the Red Cross in Banja Luka.
- In our next project, Banja Luka will receive a shipment of 250 wheelchairs, which will be delivered to the Red Cross next month – mentioned Debby Erickson.
On the spot with the users if the Soup Kitchen of the Red Cross, with increasing number of children
This is my favorite! How grateful I am to represent the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints!
BEAN SOUP PUTS A SMILE BACK ON THE FACE
Thanks to the donors and people of good will, two soup kitchens manage to feed the hungry…
Every morning, at early dawn, as soon as I get up, my mother prepares a bucket and a bag; I sit on my bicycle and head to the soup kitchen to get the food. It’s all very tasty, even the rice, but when its turn for the bean soup I go smiling and can smell it from the door, says twelve year old Saša Burić from Banja Luka.
Saša has a mother at home, who’s unemployed, and three brothers. Mother and father, he says, are divorced so we live alone from the Child benefits, and the food we get from the soup kitchen we ration for the whole day.
- Ladies from the kitchen pour my soup in the bucket, and they give me bread, then I pack it all in my bag, put it on the bicycle and carefully drive it home, where my mother and brothers await for me with impatience – says young Saša and adds that the schedule changes only when he has to go to school in the morning.
While waiting in line for his meal, he admits that he sometimes wanders and starts thinking about candies and sweets that they don’t have in the kitchen, not even at home, but that he’s happy with what he gets.
The staff that has been pouring food in buckets and pans and looking in the sad faces for 20 years knows the stories of their users, and they share with then the good and the bad.
- I’ve been working in the kitchen for 26 years, I’ve seen a lot of teary eyes and hands reaching out for food, and I always ask them how they are, and welcome them with a smile – says Dosta Marjanović.
Apart from everyday users, there is always a piece of bread and a plate of soup for those who are not on the list, but whose number is increasing since the crisis struck.
- We often have people who will stop by from the street, people who are in trouble and with an empty stomach, so we open our doors and are happy to feed them as well – says Nedeljko Šikarić who’s been working in the kitchen for the past 20 years and he added with a smile: - once I’m retired I’ll be eating here as well but I’ll be on the other side of the counter, waiting in line with the rest of the users.
Two soup kitchens of the Banja Luka Red Cross prepare and give away 400 meals. Rice, potatoes, bean soup, cabbage and peas are on the weekly menu. Chefs say that they are trying to prepare everything to be nice and tasty, but that the food would be much better if there was enough money to buy more meat. Thanks to people of good will, soup kitchens survive and feed the hungry every day. In this effort, thanks to the help of the Church of Jesus Christ from the USA, 30 year old kitchen appliances, were replaced so the food can be cooked faster and better.
Have a wonderful New Year! I look forward to many wonderful experiences during the coming months. We love you and only hope we can represent you well!!