Roger is the co-owner of Bast Dalcourt Contracting Inc. which he started 24 years ago. Next October, he and his wife Chris will be relocating to Burkina Faso, West Africa to start a vocational training centre for construction close to the Village of Hope. He just got back from his 12th trip to this west African nation, and is as enthused about the work there today as he was when he went the first time in 2003.
On the most recent trip, Roger led a group of 10 people, half Careforce trip veterans and half rookies, from a variety of backgrounds and churches. “You always wonder as the leader,” reflects Roger, “how a group is going to come together—how will all the personalities mix? Will people get along? Will they be able to form a bond and work together? I needn’t have worried. This group was amazing.”
“A few days into the trip, I got word that my son was very sick back in Canada and in and out of the hospital. The team and the Burkinabe all gathered around me, praying for my son and for my family. I felt their tremendous support. I was so thankful for their care and I think it really did draw us all together and made the trip a very special one for me.”
Roger notes that the Village of Hope is doing quite well. “There are 450 children at the centre now. A few of the newer students have some health problems, but those are being looked after. What is most amazing for me to see year after year as I visit is the progress being made by some of the children, now young adults, who came to the Village when it first started in 2003. These kids are now taking leadership roles, teaching the younger students and serving the community in many ways. It’s quite an honour to be part of this work and to see the fruit so clearly.”