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A Southwest Missouri farmer works to give young girls in India a - KOAM TV 7

A Southwest Missouri farmer works to give young girls in India a place of refuge

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If you ask Steve Dean how big the world is, he'll answer this:

"Very small. I mean, in 20 hours you can be anywhere in the world, nearly."

A farmer and hunter from Richards, Missouri, Dean travels the world, often to exotic places such as Mozambique.

But his recent project, a shelter for abandoned girls, has him bound for India.

"To think that that kinds of tragedy went on in life. I've traveled the world, but I didn't realize how bad it was for these little girls in India."

Some of the tragedies include neglect and rape.

Dean and his wife Ellen have raised enough funds to purchase four acres for the house, just outside of Chennai, India.

They are working in partnership with Reverend Prassanna Kumar in Chennai, who is currently housing the girls.

On Tuesday, he spoke to Nevada Middle School students about the project and how perseverance, as well as help from local churches and the community, has pushed it forward.

"Our hope is, down the road, that we can send mission teams to India form our church to help support this," said Pastor Steve Russ of First Baptist Church in Nevada.

"What Steve and the ministry over there is doing helps those little girls in immense ways," said Pastor Bill Platt of First Christian Church in Nevada.

Volunteer coordinator Mary Mitchell says the project not only inspires her and her family, it also sparks the idea in kids to dream big.

"It's neat to have the opportunity to know you're making a difference on the other side of the world, which is pretty cool," said Mitchell.

As he works to raise funds to being construction on the house, Dean will continue to travel to the location in Chennai, building the protection wall, and hopefully spreading the message to take care of others.  

"With god's help, we can do this. We can do this thing."


The house is called Rose of Sharon, Homes of Hope. Dean estimates they'll need to raise an additional $250,000 to build the facility. Anyone interested in learning more or donating may contact Dean at 417-549-0549 or here


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