Ingram leaving for West Africa mission trip
On Oct. 29, Sheila Ingram of Waynesville will be traveling to West Africa for four weeks to help with the growing orphan epidemic.
Ingram is a part of the mission team at Long’s Chapel United Methodist Church at Lake Junaluska. When looking for new mission opportunities, she knew exactly where the group could focus its efforts.
“I’ve been in touch with a family in Nigeria that go out to feed the orphans on the streets,” Ingram said. “In doing some research, I’ve found most are orphaned because of the AIDS epidemic that has killed off a lot of their parents and the government doesn’t take care of them.”
She brought the project before the mission group because she thought more could be done for the orphans. The family in Nigeria can only do so much and have been unsuccessful in garnering more support for the cause. They invited Ingram to their home with the hope that she can help and solicit support.
Long’s Chapel agreed to provide Ingram’s airfare while Walmart and Haywood Christian Ministries are donating clothing.
Ingram’s hope is to network with existing orphanages, organize the construction of the Little Angels Children's Center, care for and educate and facilitate adoptions for the children with the legal assistance of a local Nigerian Attorney/Bishop.
She said she wasn’t nervous about traveling to West Africa by herself because she’s gone on two mission trips to Jamaica before to minister to schools and people on the street.
“I’m very excited to go — my biggest concern was getting all the shots,” she joked. “I’m pretty used to traveling by myself. I’m 63 and have more free time to travel.”
She is still accepting donations of clothes, toys, shoes and books for the orphans as well as funds for her trip. Anyone wishing to donate funds for food or the building project can contact Ingram at 565-0054.