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Portland 2017 | The Arrival and Day One

I wasn’t able to post anything yesterday morning, but really there wasn’t much to post anyway. We piled into the van, and we drove to Portland.

Samuel get’s very sleepy on car rides.

We had planned to stop in Multnomah Falls, pick up Tavia, who was coming from Sunriver and check out the falls for a bit before heading to our housing site. What we didn’t know is that the entire city of Portland and maybe Gresham too was at the falls. There was a pretty gnarly traffic jam trying to get into the falls area and the exit for the parking area was closed since the entire city of Portland decided to park there.

Change of Plans.

We rendezvoused with Tavia at a different state park along the Columbia and then headed to Kaleo. We arrived in time for dinner and then a quick trip downtown to the Union Gospel Mission, where we got to hear the story of a man in their Life Change program. We did our orientation there as well. When we finished, we headed back to Kaleo to call it a night.

Day 1

Morning came pretty early, especially since everyone was up before they had to be. Talk about overachievers. We ate breakfast and got things ready to lead our kids’ program at Shepherd’s Door.

The program had a few challenges, mostly with the behavior of the kids we were serving, but these kids have seen a lot and been through a lot. It is not surprising that there are some behavior issues. The issues weren’t terrible, and our kids did a great job of sticking with the program and did a great job. By the time we were finished, there were many hugs from the kids who didn’t want us to leave. We had a great time, and are looking forward to going there again today.

After the kids club, and lunch in the van, we headed downtown to do what is called a cultural walk. We spent some time walking around downtown and along the river taking in the sights and sounds that make Portland unique.

After spending time in downtown, we headed to Tigard, to the Medical Teams International exhibit “Real Life.” The Real Life exhibit is an interactive exhibit that takes you through humanitarian disasters and places on the globe where poverty is the worst. Walking through the exhibit gives you a sense of what life is like there through props, photos, videos, children’s art, stories and more. We got to learn a bit more about the Tsunami’s that struck Indonesia and Japan, the crisis in Northern Uganda, the Syrian refugee crisis and more. We learned about not only the tragedy of these places but also the hope that Medical Teams International is bringing to them. There is a Real Life exhibit in Redmond, and while I have not been there, if it is anything like this one, then it is worth the drive. Real Life was a powerful experience for all of us to see the humanity of poverty, refugees, and victims of a disaster. Our students were moved by the experience which brought a greater awareness of life for many around the globe.

Harrison exploring the Mexico City garbage dumb exhibit

Our evening ended with dinner, debriefing, prepping for today, games, and a late night Voodoo Doughnut run.

We are looking forward to another fantastic day. Everyone is doing a great job!


  1. Lorann says:

    Great report Dave! Thank you for the update!

  2. Jim Dunn says:

    Great job you guys. What a fabulous experience you’re going to have.

  3. Mike Farnsworth says:

    Love it!

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