Bristol Resource Clinic Report

What a great day in Bristol at the resource clinic!

Special Dedication to Eddie Crusenberry

The lot we used was dedicated in memory of our great friend and champion in the faith Eddie Crusenberry.

Many in the community had needs met and heard the Gospel as well as saw it acted out through our many volunteers. We were blessed to have so much help in this event. Thank you to every one of those who came out from different churches and ministry organizations such as Soup for the Soul and Exit 0 for this great day of doing God’s work.

Results from day:

  • 3 saved!
  • 289 guests 
  • 149 volunteers 
  • 1 resume 
  • 40 birth certificates 
  • 85 reading glasses 
  • 3 ECC 
  • 145 clothes 
  • 43 Bibles 
  • 59 haircuts 
  • 25 medical 
  • 159 giveaways 
  • 22 churches involved

God sure is good!

To see more pictures you can click this link and find them on our Facebook page.

 

Beyond the Wall by Travis Sharpe

The rusty barbed wire sat loosely atop the crumbling, graffiti covered, hollow block wall. Taking care not to step in the urine, human feces, or trash, Lovely leaned through the broken bamboo gate and called for the children.

I watched patiently, but wondered if it was an exercise in vanity. Who in the world would be in the dirty, nasty, empty lot behind this wall? From the street, on this side of the wall, there were dozens of people walking by, most of them coming from the eatery at the end of the block. There were also college students coming and going, still in their uniforms even though it was after nine pm.

The street side of the wall was bad enough, in fact, as we pulled up, I noticed a young lady squatting beside a power pole with her shorts around her ankles. Like the other young people who call the streets their home, the base of the wall was her default bathroom. Thinking to myself, I said,  “If it is this dirty here in the open, what must it be like beyond that wall? Could there really be people living there? Are kids living there?”

But to my surprise, after Lovely called out once or twice more, the children began to emerge. One older boy walked through the bamboo opening. Some of the thin, energetic, younger boys bounder over the top of the wall with what seemed like no effort at all. The teenage girl that had been squatting when we first arrived suddenly re-appeared, wanting to shake hands- which I did.

All-in-all, about thirteen kids crossed the wall.  From eight years old all the way to late teens, these street children live part-time in the empty lot behind the wall. There, hidden from sight, they sleep, hang out, eat, and do whatever else they do. Some are runaways, some have parents that know where they are, others go home in the early hours of the morning.

Why we were there

This “wall” area, is one of the newer stops on our street ministry route. Each week, the Unsheltered Philippines ministry team takes food, prayers and lots of love to the children living on the streets. On this night we were gathering kids to bring to our rescue center for a Bible study, baths, a good meal and new clothes.

We have discovered that it takes effort to uncover the hidden people in the city. We can’t simply open our doors and wait for them to come to us, we must be pro-active and go to them. Our team is learning how to do this in a gracious and loving manner.

Are the kids dirty? of course they are. Some of them are also sniffing glue which causes their minds to not function correctly which causes them to neglect their bodies. Yes, they are often extremely dirty and extremely hard to handle. They are also extremely precious in God’s sight and extremely loved.

The bigger question is, are we willing to go “beyond the wall” to bring hope to people who are the most needy? One nine-year-old little girl who came to our rescue center with her mother last week was wearing soiled shorts and she drools constantly because of some type of disability. We love all kinds.

Do you want to make a difference?

If you want to make a difference, you’ve got to be willing to go beyond the wall. I don’t know what that wall looks like for you, but generally, they are all the same. Going beyond the wall will be uncomfortable, a little scary at times, and it won’t win any popularity contests. You will find yourself going alone at times because your friends aren’t willing to go to those kinds of places.

But in order to help people, we must go beyond the wall where others don’t want to go. It will be dirty and messy. Some of the dirt will get on you and you’ll have to learn to live with that. But when you do, you will find joy in serving Jesus through serving others. I hope you will forge ahead and find the courage to love the people who are hidden beyond the wall near you!

Here are some beyond the wall pictures from our ministry

A Little Boy Who Needed Help by Travis Sharpe

Tonight, while visiting Children and families on the streets here in Bacolod city, we came across a mother and father who were sleeping on a bed made from cardboard underneath the protection of an extended roof in front of a closed business. I want to share part of their story with you because it is very typical of many families that we meet and minister to.

The first thing that our team noticed as we approached was the large amount of “scrap” that this family had collected. Like many poor families, they make their living by collecting plastic, aluminum, and cardboard that they can sell at the junk shop the next morning. They will work in the evening hours, sometimes all night long, looking for and collecting these recyclable items they refer to as scrap.

To the untrained eye, this family might seem like they are homeless and living on the streets with no ambition whatsoever. But nothing could be further from the truth. The father, who is twenty four years old, works hard to collect the scrap that he will sell on a per-kilo basis. I was told that plastic brings about five pesos per kilo. At that rate, he would have to collect ten kilos to earn one dollar.

This family does have a home. But the money to be made as a scrapper is on the streets. If they try to return home each night like a normal working family, they will more than likely lose their bounty to the many other scrappers who are also roaming the streets at night. So, as strange at it might seem, this is a hard working family.

Consequences

One of the very sad aspects of this type of lifestyle is that it puts the mother and children out on the streets where they spend most nights in a very unsecured and unclean environment. This takes a toll on the children the most. Their little boy’s name is Dino and, as you can see in the pictures below, he is suffering from bacteria infections in his scalp. He is only six years old and yet a hard life has already negatively affected his little body. These sores are caused by the constant dirt and filth that he is forced to sleep in day after day.

His mother washes him each morning but when the sores begin, they are hard to stop. Dino’s scalp was covered with about a dozen of these sores. Some of the sores are scabbed over while some of them are open and oozing mucus and blood. Noticing his condition, our team sprang into action. Lovely retrieved a tube of triple antibiotic ointment from her bag and instructed the mother in how to use it. The mom is only twenty years old and there is a good chance she doesn’t have a good education.

Patiently, Lovely and Lola showed her exactly how to use the ointment. He became restless a few times but for the most part, slept through the treatment. We left them with some ointment and our phone number and the mother was instructed to call us if Dino begins to run a fever. If needed, we will assist them with doctors care.

Every week

Three nights per week, the Unsheltered Philippines team lovingly seeks out families who are in need of care. They minister to children, some of whom are runaways. They minister to adults, many of whom are mentally ill. Everyone they encounter is loved and cared for in Jesus name. Please keep our team in your prayers and especially little six-year-old Dino. Pray that the sores on his head will heal and that his parents will be able to climb from poverty into a better position for their family.

Also, this Friday is going to be special because we will be opening our rescue center and inviting many families to come for a good meal, and a worship service. We will also be providing showers and clothing to anyone in need. Please pray for success and that God would bless these efforts.

One more thing

Have you got your copy of our new book yet? 50 Practical Ways You Can Help The Homeless is full of simple, yet effective ways that you can use to help someone today. You can get your copy at Amazon by clicking here.

An Unforeseen Outcome of the Sunday School Lessons

Within these past two weeks after our return, we have had the opportunity to go to six of the fourteen meal centers established here on the island of Negros. While visiting the meal centers we were able to experience the impact that has already been made with the Sunday School curriculum we developed this past year.

The children now know many of the basic teachings of the Bible, such as Creation, the love and promises of God, Salvation and prayer, which has been the lesson topic of this month. The memory verse that they have learned to go with July’s lessons is 1 Thessalonians 5:17 “Pray without ceasing.”

As amazing as it has been to see the children’s growth through the lesson plan, it has been even more amazing to see the growth that it has caused in our meal center teachers. The majority of the church members who volunteer at the meal centers are between 13 and 20 years old. The teacher whose meal centers I went to Saturday morning is 16 year old Jenny. Jenny teaches and serves at three separate meal centers every Saturday.

I started to ask her some questions concerning the Lesson Plan. “Is it easy when translating from English to Ilonggo?” “Do the children enjoy the illustrations with the lessons?” etc. She had only great things to say about it, but what stuck out to me was her reaction after answering the questions. Jenny told me, “I really like teaching the children about prayer, but I am just so excited about the lessons for August! We will learn about the first sin with Lucifer and also about the fall of man and I cannot wait!” This showed me that she has been reading ahead, studying and preparing before she brings it to the children and that she has truly been blessed by this new way for her to share the Gospel.

We are praising God for the incredible results, both expected and unexpected, of this new curriculum. It continues to be more of a success than we could have imagined!

Not only do our meal center children and teachers in the Philippines have access to this great resource, but so do you. Click the link here to download a free copy of Children’s Sunday School Lessons.

Ministry Update 7-21-17

As you probably already know, we landed down here in the Philippines last Friday. We were greeted with a warm welcome from our friends and church family. They always go out of their way to make us feel comfortable, loved and wanted. We appreciate them so much for that!

 

With our first week now under our belt, we are once again re-oriented and hard at work. I preached last Sunday morning at our partner church, Crossroad Community Baptist, and Sarah sang a special beforehand. There was a good crowd and it was really good to join them again.

April has been working to get our home up and running and also getting the kids school things in order so they will be ready to start in a couple more weeks. Alyssa has been working in the meal centers and helping in children’s church.

I was very blessed to find that our street ministry team has been working hard and consistently to help the street children and homeless families who live on the streets. They are continuing to visit three nights per week bringing meals and hope to so many people. On Tuesday, I was with them and we stopped to visit with some adults that were sleeping on the sidewalk. I struck up a conversation with one of the men and he wound up trusting the Lord as his personal Savior. He is 53 years old and has said that he will attend church with us this coming Sunday.
 
A few months ago, we started a new meal center about two hours away from our house in a place called Toboso. It is operated by Pastor Jezer and Graceway Community Baptist Church. Pastor Ner and I went to visit them on Saturday and had lunch with them before they headed out for the meal center program. They are doing a fantastic job and ministering to several dozen kids each week. Please pray that God would provide sponsors for this meal center so that we can continue to help the kids in Toboso. You can find out more about this meal center by clicking here. 
 
This week we mailed out three more of our children’s Sunday School lesson books to local pastors. These one year lesson books are extremely valuable to children’s ministries and we are happy to provide them free of charge to pastors here in the Philippines. We have also made this available as a free resource to download from our website so if you know of a church that could benefit from them please share our website with them. The link to download the lessons is http://www.unsheltered.org/blog-post/free-resources/
 

Thank you very much for keeping us in your thoughts and prayers. We are honored to be your missionaries serving those in need. We can receive phone calls and text messages through our Magic Jack phone number as long as we have internet signal. Our number is 256-620-7561. We would love to hear from you! But remember, we are 12 hours ahead of EST so the best time to call or text would be early morning or late evening.

Prayer requests:
Please pray for sponsors for the meal center at Toboso
Pray for the gentleman who got saved on Tuesday
Pray for the children who sleep on the streets. They need a permanent loving home.
Pray for our family that we would accomplish our goals and make a difference here every day

Pray for April to remain strong and healthy

Sharpe family heads to Philippines

I hope you are doing great today and that the Lord blesses you abundantly. I wanted to take a quick moment to let you know that today (Tuesday July 11) is the day that our family is heading back to the Philippines. Our flight leaves Alabama at 9:31 central time and we would appreciate your prayers for traveling safety over the next 30 hours or so that we will be in transit.

We will be joining our Filipino ministry team and going right back to work in the ministry that we have been focusing on for the past 2 1/2 years. Unsheltered International Philippines has really grown and we are now reaching almost 1000 children each week plus adults.

Would you please help us pray about a few things while we are gone?

  • Pray that we can get registered with the Philippines government so our rescue center can open full time
  • Pray for wisdom and direction
  • Pray that God would allow us to expand our base of operations in Cullman, AL. We would like to be able to do more in our hometown.
  • Pray for our family that we would all stay healthy while overseas.

We will be coming home in mid-October and we have a pretty full schedule of meetings and ministry when we get back.  I think we have a couple open dates in December if you would like an update at your church. Just shoot us a message if so.

Well, I’ve got a plane to catch so I’m signing off for now! Thanks so much for your faithful support and prayers!

Blessings,
Travis Sharpe

Weekly Update and a mission trip opportunity

Hi everyone,

Today I am in Atlanta, GA with our Board of Directors. We are having our annual board meeting and time of fellowship. We began on Thursday evening and will finish up tomorrow morning. Please pray for us today that God would give us great wisdom and discernment as we discuss our ministries future opportunities. We have a great group of people serving on our board and I am really excited about it how the Lord is directing our steps.

In Cullman, AL

This week in Cullman, AL we have volunteers who are helping with the annual homeless point in time count. This is an annual count that is conducted by the Department of Housing and Urban Development. It gives a snapshot of homelessness around the country. The results are used to determine many things such as government programs for the homeless. Although we do not receive any government funds, we do participate in order to hopefully help more people escape homelessness.

We have provided several nights in a local motel for a single gentleman who was living in the woods. He has a job but no transportation. He could go to a shelter but that would mean he couldn’t get back and forth to work. He, like many others, is working hard to overcome homelessness. Please pray for his housing situation.

Mission trip to the Philippines in September

We have partnered with Shawn Doss and Hope Missions to put together a mission trip to the Philippines later this year. Shawn will be organizing the trip and bringing the group. We will be the host and the group will get to join in our homeless ministry, meal center ministry and more!

I am so glad that we were able to set the date and get this on the books. Now, we need team members to sign up and come serve alongside of us. If you are interested in this trip, please click here for all the details and to sign up.

 

Upcoming events

I will be preaching in both services at Old Union Baptist Church in Harlem, GA this coming Sunday. If you are in the area, I would love to see you there!

The first week of February I will be going to Charleston, WV to assist a church with a brand new homeless ministry. Then, on the 5th, I will be traveling to Winston-Salem, NC to meet with another church about a possible resource clinic for the homeless in their area.

Please pray for wisdom and direction as I meet with these pastors and do my best to help them reach the people of their communities.

Special prayer requests

One of our Board Of Directors members, Pastor Todd Crusenberry, is having surgery today. This is a sensitive procedure and he needs our prayers. Please pray that the Lord would guide the doctors hands and comfort this pastor and his family.

Please pray for our upcoming trip to the Philippines. We leave on February 15th and return on the 25th. We will be taking supplies to our staff and doing a training day as well. Please pray for safety and success.

Pastor Steve Dixon (in MD) is helping a family that is homeless and also very dysfunctional. One of the family members is suffering from severe disabilities.

Please pray for an exciting fundraising event that we are planning for May. I’ll fill you in with the details once we get the date and all of that good stuff squared away.

Picture of the week

 

Our staff visited this gentleman who was living on the streets in Bacolod City.

Our staff visited this gentleman who was living on the streets in Bacolod City.

 

Thanks for reading, praying, and being involved!

 

Travis Sharpe

Weekly Update- New Trip Planned

Hello everyone,

We have had a great week here in Cullman, AL. God has blessed in several ways and it is great to be in the service of our Lord Jesus Christ. April and I are excited to tell you that we will be taking a short trip to The Philippines next month. The trip will be February 15-25 and we will be accompanied by Pastor Steve Dixon, his wife Rebekah, and their two boys, Ben and Dillon.

 

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During this trip we will be training our Philippines staff, meeting with an architect , looking at property, visiting the meal centers, accompanying the staff during the street ministry and preaching. I’m getting tired just typing all of that! These shorter trips are important because they help us advance our ministry in various ways. For example, we hope to have a solid idea of building costs after meeting with the architect and land costs after looking at some properties.

Please pray for us to have a successful trip and to get much accomplished during our time on the ground. We have secured our flights already and we are making all of the necessary preparations now. One thing I would like to do is take new hiking boots to our staff. We also need a few other tools for the weekly ministry. If you want to know more about helping make that possible, send me an email by clicking here, and I will give you some details.

A great week with the Ner Family

It has been a pleasure to have Pastor and Mrs. Antonio Ner staying with us for the last few days. Pastor Ner is a church planting missionary and also our partners in the Philippines.

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They are here in the United States to raise some additional monthly support for their family and to update their supporters. It was a blessing to have them with me last Sunday at Pleasant Valley Baptist Church in the morning and at Mt. Pleasant Baptist Church in the evening. Thank you Pastors Scott Campbell and Dan Boatman. Also, a big thank you to Pastor Malcolm Carter and Temple Baptist Church for hosting Pastor Ner on Wednesday night.

Prayer requests

Please pray for a man named Cletus who needs a place to live. He has a job and is a hard worker and we are praying for an open door.

Please pray for a man named Robbie who has been homeless for quite some time now. We are working to get him into permanent housing.

Please pray for a man named George who is paying $20 per night to sleep on someone’s couch. The house is in horrible condition and he wants to get somewhere better.

Please pray for April Sharpe (my wife), that her illness would improve and that she will do good on our upcoming Philippines trip.

 

Thank you

Thank you for reading and praying. We are glad to have you as a concerned supporter!

Travis Sharpe

Christmas was a huge success!

Hello everyone, I hope you have had a great week so far. We have been real busy around here and the week has flown by. It has been a real pleasure for my family to have Antonio and Merliza Ner staying with us this week. They are our partners in the Philippines and they are here in the United States to raise extra support for their family and for a building project that they are working on.

I have enjoyed introducing Pastor Ner to all of my friends and showing him around town. The very first night that he was here, we received a phone call from a friend about a man who was sleeping in a makeshift shelter out in the woods. Pastor Ner and I met up with Kasey and Ismael Membreno and went out to find the man living in the box in the woods.

Pastor Ner talking to the man in the box.

Pastor Ner talking to the man in the box.

We found the place and there was a gentleman inside. Since the temperatures were forecasted to dip into the high 20’s that night, we decided to provide a few nights in a local motel for him. He was extremely grateful because he hadn’t showered in days and he had started a new job that very day. Pastor Ner really enjoyed going with us to meet the man and help him on such a cold night.

The great news is that it looks like he has been able to find some more permanent lodging and he might be able to move in a few more days. Please help us pray that everything works out for him.

We are also working with another gentleman that Hunter and I met this week while he was holding a sign asking for help in the Walmart parking lot. He is 57 years old and disabled so we are working to get him into housing as well. Prayerfully, we will be able to see him get off the streets and into a safe place to live.

Final update on the Fall Fundraising Campaign

I want to thank everyone who gave to help us in the fundraising campaign that we have now wrapped up. There are still a couple of pledges that are yet to come in but it looks like the total is going to be right around $36,500.00.

We are already putting this money to use in our meal centers and street visitation ministry in the Philippines. Although it will not fully fund those ministries, it will go a long way to start us off right for this new year. Although we did not reach the $40,000.00 goal, we did break a record by raising the most money that we have ever raised in our Fall Campaign. Thank you for helping us, we are very excited to achieve that mile marker.

Christmas was a huge success

I will let the pictures do most of the talking on this one, but I do want to share some details. Over several days during Christmas season, our ministry staff held Christmas parties for the children in our meal centers. This year, over 500 children received gifts, a good meal and participated in a fun Christmas party.

The kids wanted me to tell you thank you for the blessing that you helped to make possible for them. For many of them, the only thing they receive for Christmas is the food and gifts that we give to them. It’s awesome to share the joy of Jesus and his birth with them.

You can double click on an image to select it and then double click it again to see it full size.

Thank you again for your prayers and support.

Travis Sharpe

2015 In Pictures

2015 is almost gone! Here’s a look back at some of our high points throughout the year.

 

 

 

The Sharpe Family, along Lynnsey McAllister, let the first week of 2015 headed for the Philippines

The Sharpe Family, along Lynnsey McAllister, let the first week of 2015 headed for the Philippines

 

The Board of Directors for Unsheltered International, Philippines is formed

The Board of Directors for Unsheltered International, Philippines is formed

 

Our first experience with street children

Our first experience with street children

Children visit our home for the first time. We gave them baths and lunch

Children visit our home for the first time. We gave them baths and lunch

We visit the dumpsite in Bacolod City for the first time

We visit the dumpsite in Bacolod City for the first time

 

A building is built at the dumpsite and we begin a weekly ministry for the children

A building is built at the dumpsite and we begin a weekly ministry for the children

 

A building is constructed in a village called Handumannan and becomes a meal center for children

A building is constructed in a village called Handumannan and becomes a meal center for children

 

 

Pastor Todd Crusenberry leads the GPA Medical team and we partner to help over 1000 people

Pastor Todd Crusenberry leads the GPA Medical team and we partner to help over 1000 people

 

A team is trained to minister to the homeless in Bacolod City

A team is trained to minister to the homeless in Bacolod City

 

 

Two brother are rescued and reunited with family after almost two months on the streets.

Two brother are rescued and reunited with family after almost two months on the streets.

 

Pastor Steve Dixon brings a team to help in summer camp and the meal centers

Pastor Steve Dixon brings a team to help in summer camp and the meal centers

 

Back in the U.S., Pastors Tim Crusenberry, Steve Dixon, and Michael Moore lead the City Gate Resource Clinic in PA

Back in the U.S., Pastors Tim Crusenberry, Steve Dixon, and Michael Moore lead the City Gate Resource Clinic in PA

 

 

Sharpe family returned to U.S. in May. Several of our church families welcomed us home.

Sharpe family returned to U.S. in May. Several of our church families welcomed us home.

 

My dad (left) joined us in Bristol, VA for our annual resource clinic in June. Billy Sampson and Kenny Marr joined in as well.

My dad (left) joined us in Bristol, VA for our annual resource clinic in June. Billy Sampson and Kenny Marr joined in as well.

 

Sarah got saved and baptized

Sarah got saved and baptized

 

 

We spent our family vacation in Pigeon Forge

We spent our family vacation in Pigeon Forge

 

One of our dearest friends and very faithful supporter, went home to be with the Lord. We love you Patsy Parker and we miss you like crazy. Thank you for loving our family and helping us in our mission so much.

One of our dearest friends and very faithful supporter, went home to be with the Lord. We love you Patsy Parker and we miss you like crazy. Thank you for loving our family and helping us in our mission so much.

 

Travis's Papa Ergie turned 80. We celebrated during Thanksgiving.

Travis’s Papa Ergie turned 80. We celebrated during Thanksgiving.

 

Precious was the first baby to be born to an Unsheltered International staff member. Congratulations Genevieve and MarKinley!

Precious was the first baby to be born to an Unsheltered International staff member. Congratulations Genevieve and MarKinley!

 

At 14, Hunter finally surpassed his Papa Harvey in height!

At 14, Hunter finally surpassed his Papa Harvey in height!

 

Sharpe family spent Christmas Eve in Walmart parking lot. (That was a first!)

Sharpe family spent Christmas Eve in Walmart parking lot. (That was a first!)

 

Over 500 kids in our ministry had a great Christmas!

Over 500 kids in our ministry had a great Christmas!

 

 

James Dennis came to hear me (Travis) preach on December 27th. James was one of the first men to get saved at the Mission in Augusta, GA over 10 years ago.

James Dennis came to hear me (Travis) preach on December 27th. James was one of the first men to get saved at the Mission in Augusta, GA over 10 years ago.

 

Thanks for sticking with us throughout 2015. I pray that you have a great New Year and we’ll see you in a few days!!