I arrived in frozen, snow-covered Lethbridge, AB, on Feb 13, 2003. I could not understand why the people drove so slowly. I thought they didn’t know how to drive!
Two weeks after my arrival to Canada my priority is to speak to individuals or organizations who would be willing to hear the desperate needs of those refugees in Kenya camps and Nairobi.
When I get out of the bush in Ethio-Kenya desert I looked for a flag. When I was in the middle of snow covered Lethbridge, I started looking for a cross.
One day I left my house not knowing where I was heading, only knowing the purpose . Beside the street, I found the sign I was looking for, and I waked in. The person who was shoveling snow followed me and introduced himself as Wes Midgett, the Senior Pastor of the Central Church of Christ. Due to the work he is doing , the way he approached me, his clothes, and every thing in that moment made me not trust him until I saw him preaching. That day was a huge impact on my life. He answered my questions, and became my best friend.
The rest of my family eventually joined me. On Feb 4, 2004 my wife Sofia came to Canada. Then, Biruke, my son was sponsored in June 2005, and then, in May 2012, my daughter Ruth. Sofia and I have two children born in Canada, Hannah and Efrem.
Besides the Central Church of Christ, I would like to thank all the individuals who responded for the needs of refugees particularly, City Light Church of Lethbridge, Coaldale Mennonite Brethren.
In 2003 Wes and I started to think about the urgent needs of refugees in Kenya and of the people still living in my village and the entire region of South Omo. We and many wonderful people started and supported Friends of South Omo to try and raise awareness and resources to help the people of that region. Our organization is now called; GALATA MINISTRIES which in many of the Ethiopian dialects means: THANKS!
One particular person needs a special thanks: Barb Marchuk served as Executive Director of Friends of South Omo from 2007-2015. She, and her family, sacrificially served the organization, traveled to South Omo, and organized a host of community events and funding projects that impacted thousands of lives and villages in the South Omo region. That impact still continues to this day as Barb still continues as the Executive Director of Friends of South Omo.
Finally I would like to thank each and every person who stood beside us for all these years to provide care for those refugees and for the tribes in South Omo, Ethiopia.
In 2007 Paulos (L) his brother assafa (R) and their now deceased father gebeyehu
In 2007 Paulos (R) reunited with samuel garsho and his family. Pastor Wes Midgett (L) with the group at Samuel's home.
I strongly believe that to bring a positive change in someone’s life, sharing the burden with them is most important.
If you do not know someone in need for care in your area, please join me! I am here to speak with you.
My name is Paulos Gote. My goal is to help the people of South Omo improve their lives. I do that by bringing peace, joy and opportunity through new ideas, projects and investments.
The meeting with Wes Midget, pastor of Central Church of Christ, has triggered the ideas and projects and investments that have started a small transformation in the South Omo region.
Education is the main hope for the people of South Omo region. Strengthening the education system, bringing more teachers and improving school facilities is of utmost importance.