At Heart for Lebanon, our Health Awareness Program teaches students important, practical, personal, and community health skills. However, these programs extend much further by affirming both Biblical character values and transformation in Jesus Christ.

For example, students recently participated in a recycling project that taught the Biblical value of stewardship. In class, they learned about how much trash each person produces a day, they multiplied by the number of days in a year and the number of students in class to see how much waste their class produced each year – and were horrified by their findings! In response, students learned the importance of recycling to protect the earth, culminating in a creative project where their teacher asked them to “find something that you’re going to throw away and instead of throwing it away, make something out of it.”

In class the next week, the students presented their projects in front of 60 of their peers. Their recycled objects were inspiring; from pencil sharpeners to wall hangings to trash cans made from egg cartons. One child made a top that spun for almost half a minute, another a wind turbine that actually turned, and yet another a beautiful purse that closed and locked. One shy girl (whose piece would have won “best in show”) brought her flower-patterned storage container inside a plastic bag so no one could see it until it was time to present. On stage she opened it carefully, exuding quiet satisfaction with what she knew was good work. Each child was so proud of their work, ate up the admiration of their teachers, and loved cheering loudly for their friends. Overall, the mood of the room was full of delight, joy, excitement, energy, and confidence.

Through their recycling project, children in the Health Education program learned to steward their resources, creating value out of something the world saw as valueless. In a time where many powerful groups devalue refugee lives, calling them wasted, trashed by war and terror, the children themselves are owning and demonstrating the reality of transformation from useless trash to recycled treasure, restoring the hope and transformation of Christ to their futures. With your partnership at Heart for Lebanon, we teach children to recycle trash, but they teach us something far greater – the value of recycled lives.

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