If our children are our heart, then our staff are our muscles. Nothing would ever get done on the Mission if it wasn’t for our team of caring individuals who work tirelessly to create the safe, nurturing environment that exists at Strong Farm. Most of our staff live on site in accommodations that we provide. Their homes are very modest. Generally they have very little in the way of possessions or assets and often their homes are in need of repairs. But in all cases, this is a labor of love, with many staff members knowing first hand just how powerful a loving Mission childhood can be.
Our children refer to our staff members as Auntie and Uncle; this is an important part of building our family atmosphere. Our youngest members of staff are around twenty years old and our oldest is over eighty! Each day our staff members meet together for afternoon and morning tea, and every Tuesday afternoon for a staff meeting to discuss the needs and works of the Mission together.
Aunty Violet is the oldest member of our staff and in addition to this the oldest living member of the Mission. She came as a child in the early 1950’s, one of the original children of our home. As she grew up she worked alongside Rev. Maxton Strong and his family in the early establishment of the farm. For more than thirty years Violet has been the Hostel Warden for our Junior Boys, providing them with love, care and stability.
Uncle Anil is part of the backbone of the Mission. Anil works on the farm assisting in the supervision and management. He grew up as a young man of the mission, toiling hard in our fields and has seen more of our crops come to yield than perhaps any man alive. Anil loves sitting by our fish tanks with a rod or taking evening walks with his grandchildren.
Aunty Peggy is Uncle Anil’s other half. She helps out with any odd jobs around the place but perhaps has the most important job out of all of us: making sure our chai is made on time for morning and afternoon tea! Aunty Peggy grew up on the Mission and was married to Anil before they joined our staff body, together they have three daughters and a son.
Benny never stops! Be it delivering wheat to the mill for grinding into flour, collecting shopping from the market or small electrical repairs you can be sure Benny is giving his all. With an electric personality he is someone many of our volunteers immediately come to love and respect.
Feeding our big family is no small task and while she doesn’t do it alone the buck stops with Lucy. Chicken curry, fried potatoes, birthday cakes, donuts, bread… you name it and Lucy will make it happen. Like so many others here on this page Lucy too was a child of the Mission.
Esther has lived almost her entire life on the Mission; growing up as one of the children here she now helps to run our Nursery Hostel -ensuring our youngest ones are bathed, clothed, loved and ready for whatever life has in store for them. She also does an amazing job helping out in our Kitchen when the team there needs some extra support.
When Joey first came to the Mission as an infant he was adopted by Maxine (our Founding Directors daughter) who saw to the additional care and support he needed. He grew up on the Mission before moving up to the mountains to work for some friends. Now, years later, he has returned and devoted himself to the work of the Mission. Joey keeps himself very busy by working in and around our main administration building doing gardening and odd jobs around the grounds.
After growing up on the Mission Stella has now chosen to work in the service of the next generation of children. She helps look after the Senior Girl’s Hostel as well as assisting in the main laundry where almost our entire families clothes are washed. When she is not doing either of those she can be found out in the garden helping keep everything looking green and beautiful.
Another child of the Mission, Jack spent many years working out in the “big wide world” before making the decision to return home. He now lives in our Senior Boys Hostel where he cares for the older boys. Taking on perhaps the most challenging hostel with love and compassion, Jack is a fun loving guy who enjoys long walks in the nearby jungle, fishing and cricket! Thankfully he lives with a dozen or so boys who love these things too!
Sunny is another of our boys who grew up into a young man and chose to join us on staff. Fun loving and full of life Sunny works as the Manager of our farm and works hard every day as one of the key members of our Maintenance Department. If something needs to be welded, drilled, repaired or driven then Sunny is the man for the job!
Flippy is an old farm boy who has lived his whole life either on or working for the mission. He helps to drive our school van and assists with day-to-day maintenance in our workshop. Flippy and his wife Babitha have 2 sons.
Our carpenter Ganesh worked first as a contracted labor in our school, when we saw his skills and attitude towards life we knew he was a perfect fit for our family! Now working as a full time carpenter Ganesh builds much of our furniture and helps with general maintenance around the campus.
A second generation Mission boy, Amos’s parents Benny and Lucy were both children of the farm (and now work on staff). Amos helps out in our office, maintaining accounts, collecting bills and conducting banking. Amos also heads up our Sponsorship Department and regularly communicates with our supporters to ensure a great level of accountability for our organization.
When Filly was growing up as a young girl here on the Mission she never would have imagined herself as the Kindergarten Incharge for our big school. It’s a huge responsibility but Filly does an amazing job of bringing stability, discipline and love to our youngest students.
Our youngest member of staff, Nancy technically works in our school. After completing a Bachelor of Arts and then a Diploma in Elementary Education and is the very first teacher that most of our students have when they join our Kindergarten. While still living with our Senior Girls she also helps around the Mission with tuition, cooking and cleaning.
Yet another Mission boy, Silvester spent a decade off the property before returning to settle down here. Silvester has a tough and dirty job: driving and maintaining our tractors. Sun, sleet, rain or fog can’t stop him from making sure our fields are ready for planting; we are grateful for his dedication!
Kallu Singh Rana
Growing up next door to the mission Kallu and his family have been a part of our journey for decades. Kallu now works in our agricultural department helping drive vehicles and tractors. Between him and Silvester our fields stay in top shape!
Initially working as a volunteer and then a salaried staff member, Amit has rejoined as a volunteer. It’s hard to lock him down to any one task or department, Amit is always willing to help with any and every job. Strangely enough most of his work is done off the mission as he liaises with various government offices, banks and businesses on our behalf.