Ray and Dawn Spoon

Healing, Education, Abundant Life

FARM STEW Training updates and New Tractor needed

February and March have been very busy from a FARM STEW perspective.  February 21-March 3 we conducted a FARM STEW Trainer of Trainers (TOT) event where for 10 days we instructed 40 students - eager to learn how to incorporate FARM STEW principles into their own life as well as use it in a practical way to with their neighbors and villages to help them learn the abundant life that God intends for them.


On the last Sabbath we had an opportunity to visit a local community of native people called “New Mexico” who had been displaced by the government in order to give their land in a large contract to big international farms holders. This village of New Mexico has about 36 homes, no working toilet, a water source that is about 0.75 mile away in each direction. Malnutrition, inadequate health care and poor sanitation are just a few of their problems.


Poverty Hunger and Disease are on full display in this village with more than 74% of the younger children showing symptoms of malnutrition while many of the younger children have scabies and various other skin and respiratory diseases.  


But how to help them?  Without water, how can they grow a kitchen garden in the dry season? How can we expect they will use and maintain TippyTap (Hand Washing stations) when water is so far away? How about toilets?  


We know that FARM STEW has a solution!  We hope to work with the people of New Mexico and share with them the Abundant Life that Jesus intended for them. FARM STEW is about educating and empowering people to help themselves.


By the end of the training, we were able to certify 39 new FARM STEW Planters equipped to go out and share FARM STEW with neighbors, villages and etc to address the common main problems of Poverty Hunger and Disease.


Since then, we have seen the new FARM STEW Planters practicing their new skills by implementing them at their own homes, sharing their knowledge in villages as part of evangelistic outreach and actively looking for opportunities to share with others.  We have also received requests from throughout the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand and India to provide FARM STEW training in their countries as well.  


Our next big training will be teaching the Sulads teachers who go to distant and remote areas to teach school in the villages where the Dept of Education has not yet reached.  Last year, they sent out over 120 missionary teachers and this year are praying for more. We have been invited to share FARM STEW with them sometime in June orJuly.

With the need for a source of Heirloom seeds to share during the training, we will need to increase our growing capacity and space, developing a system for growing food for seeds to share at each of our trainings.  It is difficult to find heirloom seeds here in the Philippines so we are needing to create our own. 


We currently have an old tractor to mow the airstrip - the gear box has broken so many times it will now only run in 3rd and 4th gears – whether we are mowing or rototilling. It is frequently broken down and out of service while waiting for parts.  


For the month of April, we will be doing a special fundraising event to raise money for a new tractor with implements.  We have selected a Kubota L4018 with a front loader, wide mowing deck and a rototiller. This will total of approximately $20,000.  Your generosity towards this need will empower FARM STEW to continue to reach more people throughout Asia.

This tractor and these implements will greatly enhance the PAMAS FARM STEW’s ability to rehab the ground we have through composting and utilizing FARM STEW methods for sustainable farming. We will be able to produce enough heirloom seeds to empower poor families to help themselves through sustainable gardening, feeding their families and create enterprises to better support their families.


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