Top 3 Highlights of My Cambodia Trip.


My two weeks of travel in Cambodia came to an end a couple of weeks ago.  It was      great to be home and reunited with my family.  But I do already miss being with the  CGI staff & participants in Cambodia.  It was a great trip and fruitful in many ways.  I  really enjoyed spending time with everyone there and deepening our relationships as a  team.  I thought about what I would consider my top three highlights from the trip  and I decided to share them with you.  So here goes–

1)    The Culinary Training Center graduation ceremony was incredible.  If you received my last update you recall I shared how wonderful this ceremony was.  The eight girls who completed their training in our 3rd culinary training class graduated on March 12th.  Several of their family & friends came to see the girls receive their certificates of completion.  Through the smiles and the tears of joy, you could see this great accomplishment meant a lot to not only the girls graduating but also their families.  The 70+ people in attendance got to eat lots of food the girls had prepared for everyone to show off their cooking skills.  Best of all, prayers and the Good News of Jesus was a central part of the ceremony.

IMG_37342)    A big focus of this trip was to figure out what to do with the Culinary Training Center & Green Mango location.  We learned a few months ago that our lease on the current property could not be renewed long-term.  Thus we were looking at a new property to move to.  The new property was a former school and is twice as big as our current property for less monthly rent.  This new location has great potential and we believe it is also in a better location for restaurant customers.  There are obvious build-out costs and operational issues for which to consider and plan.  We are trusting that God will provide the needed financial resources and leadership staff to make the move a reality.  Please pray that we would have wisdom & clear discernment in this decision.

3)    Before I left for this trip I had the idea of sharing about how Jesus is the light of the world with the CGI staff & participants in Cambodia.   And so I purchased several small LED flashlights and I prepared a ‘light of the world’ devotion and took them with me. I had several opportunities to share them with everyone there.  I explained how Scripture tells us that Jesus is the light of the world.  And how light always overcomes darkness.  We looked at the invitation from Jesus to follow Him, and if we do we can walk in the light instead of the darkness.  And the coolest part – like Jesus – we become the light of the world too!  I explained how we let our light shine by doing good works that point people to Jesus, the one true God.  I gave everyone a flashlight and explained how it is powered by the battery which gives it the ability to shine.  And as followers of Jesus we are powered by the Holy Spirit which enables us to shine.  And I told them to think of Jesus every time they used that flashlight, how He is the light of the world and how they too can be a light in this dark world if they choose to follow Him.  I also told them that is why CGI exists – to share the light of Jesus!

Every time I have been to Cambodia I have a moment (usually many moments) where I stop and ask myself – “How did I end up here?”  This trip the answer was crystal clear.  I ended up in Cambodia because that is where Jesus led me.  CGI is there to do good works in the name of Jesus.  We shine the light of Christ in Cambodia through the programs we operate and relationships we build.  To God be the glory!

You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” [Matthew 5:14-16]



Paving the way for The Imprint Project in 2015

Since CGI first began in 2008, our byTavi project has been at the core of our ministry’s mission. It’s one tangible way we’re able to empower the poor, protect the vulnerable and share the Gospel with at-risk women in Cambodia.

It is because of people like you who have supported byTavi through volunteer efforts and/or product purchase that over 40 women along with their children & families have been kept safe and experienced hope. The byTavi project continues to grow, allowing us to reach new Cambodians every year!

It is because of the unwavering dedication and support of our byTavi network that we come to you with our greatest need for 2015: your sponsorship of the Imprint Project.

11052502_956662127697832_7309372606120734359_oThe Imprint Project is a reintegration program for previously trafficked and at-risk girls. Our goal is to create opportunities through the skill of sewing, giving them employment options other than returning to the sex trade. The Imprint Project staffs social workers and Bible teachers to help the young women heal from a past of violence and slavery so they may see the light of Jesus. It is a holistic approach to changing these young women’s future and hearts. The Imprint Project is younger than byTavi, and we want to see the same success and hope spring from this project as we see from byTavi each year. Our first class of Imprint students just graduated in March, and we’re poised to welcome our second class, beginning in July.

Previous students of this program are now byTavi seamstresses that make the products you have seen or even purchased.

We want to invite you in on the ground level. We have 12 students available to sponsor at $250 per girl for 18
months. This is a total cost of $54,000. This sponsorship will go towards:

  • Individually focused social workers and counselors
  • Student stipends for basic living needs and family support
  • Seamstress instructors, teaching facilities and sewing materials

Will you consider becoming a monthly sponsor or making a financial gift by April 30th to fund these 12 students?

We know if anyone can help us reach this goal, it’s our faithful network of byTavi supporters! A gift of any amount is appreciated. Please send us an email at!