Finding Freedom

free-fireworks-image-11What is freedom?

Here in the States, we just celebrated the 4th of July, which represents our freedom as a country. We throw parties and shoot fireworks, celebrating this notion of being FREE.

But what if you were robbed of your freedom? What if you had no say about what happened to you and your children? No input into the direction of your life? What if you were a slave to someone or something bigger than you, and had no choice but to succumb to desperate acts to survive?

That’s a reality for an unsettling number of impoverished women in Cambodia. They choose almost nothing about their situations, and do whatever it takes to make it through another day. They often long for freedom, but don’t know where to find it.

At CGI, we throw ourselves fully into helping guide women like these toward freedom–financially, spiritually, emotionally. We show them doors they can walk through if they are willing, and provide the tools and skills they need to finally BE FREE.

Want to help? Email us at

NACC Comes to Indy

Nicole Krajewski

Nicole Krajewski

The North American Christian Convention (NACC) will be held July 8-11, and this year, it will be held right here in Indy!

The convention will be downtown at the Convention Center and will feature 4 days of exciting speakers, workshops, exhibits and resources. Our very own Nicole Krajewski, CGI’s designer, will be one of the featured speakers at the Ladies’ Luncheon on July 10.

CGI will have an amazing booth that showcases our byTavi and Imprint products, gives folks a sample of the lime sorbet being served at our restaurants in Cambodia and gives people a little taste of the “CGI Experience!” Come out and say hello, and be encouraged by a network of believers! We’d love to see you there.

Register today

“Women Helping Women”

JaneSpeedyMy introduction to CGI was through our Center United Methodist youth going on a mission trip to Cambodia last year and then having the purses at our church for sale. I purchased one immediately!

Then, when my daughter, Susan Lukich, came to Arizona (where we spend our winters) to visit last January, she brought along 10 purses and 4 scarves. It took only one hour for them to be sold in our RV park in Arizona! Ladies started asking if I could get more purses! I called Susan who purchased a box from FedEx, went to CGI, purchased 40 purses and shipped them to me.

After those were sold rapidly, I called Susan to say we needed more! She again visited the store and a staff member said, “We will ship them to your mom!” So, then began the phenomena. I would call Hali at CGI, she would ship purses and send me the tracking info, I would let the people know when they would arrive…and my deck was full of women by the time the FedEx man would arrive.

On one of the first shipments, the FedEx young delivery man handed me the large box and stated “Your purses are here.” Since the box had stereo equipment pictured on it, I was curious as to how he knew they were purses. He laughed and said, “Three women stopped me here in the RV park and wanted to know if I was taking purses to Jane’s!” The ladies started to gather well ahead of the delivery time each week and were actually arguing about who arrived first so they would have first choice. MANY purchased multiples to take home for gifts.

We attend a church in Arizona and I had told the pastor that I would be bringing in some of the purses to sell there. He was looking forward to that and was excited about telling the congregation all about CGI.

It was such a wonderful experience for me and what a great opportunity to tell so many different people from so many different places about CGI and the wonderful work they are doing in Cambodia. One friend said, “What a great cause; it is truly women helping women around the world.” The ongoing question to me has been, “Will you have more next year?!”

By: Jane Speedy, byTavi rep

What is the 10/40 Window?

Courtesy of

Courtesy of

In conversations about missions, you may have heard the term “10/40 Window.” But what exactly does it mean?

In simple terms, it is the area of the world between 10 and 40 degrees north latitude; a rectangular box that encompasses parts of Northern Africa, the Middle East and Asia. This is a small area, but about two-thirds (two-thirds!) of the global population lives within this area. Not only is this window heavily populated, but its also characterized by extreme poverty and the highest concentration of people groups without access to the Gospel, due to both resistance and lack of opportunities to reach them.

Cambodia is one of those countries. At CGI, our greatest desire is to bring the Kingdom of God to the Kingdom of Cambodia. This isn’t accomplished overnight, and we have learned that bringing the Gospel to this small portion of the 10/40 Window we’ve been given access to is a slow and purposeful process. We rejoice in each life that is changed by the love of Jesus…each light that can start to flicker in the spiritual darkness of the Window.

Please join us in praying for this specific portion of the world that God desires to redeem for Himself.

Father’s Day is Around the Corner!

“ It was during our trip to Angkor Wat that I first thought Pa was a god. I was only three or four years old then. With my hand in Pa’s, we entered the area of Angkor Thom, one of the many temple sites there. The gray towers loomed large before us like stone mountains. On each of the towers, giant faces with magnificent headdresses looked out in different directions over our land. Staring at the faces I exclaimed, ‘Pa, they look like you! The gods look like you!’”

Excerpt from First They Killed My Father: A Daughter of Cambodia Remembers by Loung Ung

Skinny_Ties_2__97149.1401668795.195.195As children, we often see our dad as a hero, a god… it should be a precious time in the life of any family. Unfortunately, Loung Ung lost her father as a 6 year old to the Khmer Rouge, the leaders of a terrible genocide in Cambodia throughout the 70’s.

Reading this story, we are reminded of how evil life can be, but also how precious and fragile. Have you taken time recently to let your family know how much you love them? Have you taken time to tell your dad (whether he be your father from birth, your figurative father, or even your father in Heaven) that you couldn’t be who you are today without him?

This Father’s Day, treat a man in your life with something a little extra special. Brand new wallets and skinny ties made by women in Cambodia, many of whom have survived the Khmer Rouge and horrors of sex trafficking, are on sale now! Not only will you show your dad or your guy some love, but you will also be showing love to some beautiful women.

By Kristen Baynai

Shop byTavi Men’s Collection!

Open for Business!

OpeningThe Red Chili is officially open for business!

After many months renovating the lower level of a 3-story space and transforming it into a Mexican grill, CGI’s second restaurant is now up and running! Chef Ryana DeArmond has been working hard to develop the concept and menu, which features burritos, nachos and salads that can be customized with a variety of meats, salsas and toppings. With tourism on the rise in Cambodia, this is a great time to embark on new and innovative restaurant ventures. This will also serve as a wonderful venue for advanced training and employment for graduates of our CTC program. God has been so good to open this door!

The grand opening followed an initial “soft opening” a few days prior, and turnout was positive! The opening featured fun contests, a photo booth for customers and of course, lots of delicious Mexican food. Please continue to support the Red Chili through prayer, sponsorships and social media support!opening2


And They’re Off!

photo-76Today, CGI Interim Executive Director Nathan Cecil–along with some of CGI’s board members–arrive in Cambodia to see, encourage and work with program participants and Cambodian staff. Please join us in praying for:

-Safety and protection, both physically and spiritually

-That they would be led by the Spirit and His vision would be CGI’s vision

-That they would see where and how God is working there

-That they would be a blessing to the people of Cambodia

Thank you for partnering with CGI and for your prayers during these weeks of travel!



Cross at Tavis houseResurrection is on many of our minds as we head toward Easter Sunday. In celebrating this defining moment in the Gospel, we can’t help but think of the “resurrection” we see in the lives of the women we serve in Cambodia.

So many of them come to CGI from places of despair and darkness that gradually changes to wholeness and hope. This wholeness takes root on many fronts, from physical and emotional wholeness to—in several cases—spiritual wholeness as they come to believe and follow Jesus. This is our greatest desire for the women in our programs and ultimately, for the Kingdom of Cambodia.

Thank you for being a part of their stories. There is much to celebrate this Easter.

Khmer New Year

Photo credit:

Photo credit:

Next week Cambodia will be celebrating their New Year. While this is an exciting time filled with celebration and family, it is also a time when spiritual warfare can be present for the women in our programs. They will have next week off, and many of them travel home to be with their family and friends.

Would you join us in praying protection–emotional, physical and spiritual–over each of them? In a week that will be heavily steeped in Buddhist traditions and returning to potentially unhealthy situations at home, we want these women wearing the full armor of God.

Thank you so much for interceding on their behalf.

We’re Opening a Second Restaurant!

Future site of new restaurant

Future site of new restaurant

The Green Mango Cafe is very dear to us here at CGI. It’s the place where the students in our Culinary Training Center (CTC) get to put their education into action and gain real-world restaurant experience. It’s a place where confidence is built and skills are sharpened, paving the way out of poverty for so many at-risk women. (Plus, they make amazing Banana Bread French Toast!)

Two years after opening the Green Mango Cafe in Battambang, CGI is excited to share that we’ll be opening a second restaurant nearby! Our team in Cambodia is working hard to renovate the first floor of a three-story building that will be used for the restaurant, which will feature Mexican cuisine. If all goes according to plan, the doors will open in early June!

We are thrilled about this opportunity, and we need YOUR help! In the coming weeks we’ll be purchasing tables, chairs, kitchen equipment and other necessities.Would you consider donating a gift to help with start-up costs for the new restaurant? For gifts over $100 we’ll send you a Green Mango Cookbook! Just write “Restaurant Start-Up” in the comments section when you donate. And an added bonus: each donation will matched dollar for dollar by a generous donor!

This is a great opportunity for advanced training and jobs for our CTC graduates. We are thankful for the way God has allowed this program to grow and evolve over the years, and for your support and prayers. We couldn’t do it without you.

Donate to the New Restaurant!