Hollywood actor and born-again Christian, Stephen Baldwin, the closing speaker at the Christian Media Association Conference, unveiled his initiative to help save the lives of persecuted Christians. Baldwin talked about FORTS (Fold-Out Rigid Temporary Shelters) that can be used as a refuge by displaced and threatened Christians in insurgent-torn countries abroad.
Known for his roles in widely acclaimed films, such as “The Usual Suspects,” “Threesome,” “The Flyboys,” to name a few, Baldwin is the youngest of the Baldwin brothers, who are all actors.
In an interview with Cheryl Ariaz Wicker for Christian Movie Connect a couple of hours prior to his keynote session, Baldwin revealed the vision for his Saints FORTS project (www.saintsforts.com).
It all began, he said, when a Christian friend of his introduced him to the owner of the Florida-based company, FORTS. “Depending upon how much you put yourself out there in this walk of faith, God can bring you things that are rather unexpected. My friend just said, ‘I felt like God told me to put you guys together.’ Then there was this other group connected to trying to rescue persecuted Christians in Iraq, Iran, Syria, and Turkey. I was working on all these different things separately and then, coincidentally, everybody in the different [areas] happened to be in the room at the same time so we all partnered together,” explained Baldwin of how Saints FORTS was born.
Simply put, FORTS is a temporary mobile living or office space that can be put together by two people in 10 minutes or less. Think life-sized origami in reverse — you only need to fold out the attached panels, not unlike opening a box, and you end up with a fully functioning enclosed space of 20’x 20’.
Made from heavy-duty insulated aluminum, FORTS are created to withstand extreme weather conditions and can be constructed on any type of terrain. They’re extremely slim (3’ x 10’ x 20’), making it possible to ship six units per flatbed or container to anywhere in the world. Faster and more efficient than a tent system, once it’s opened, all you have to do is plug it into a power source like a generator and you have running water, a bathroom, miniature kitchen, air-conditioner and heat,” said Baldwin.
For the actor, these mobile shelters are perfect for a variety of work, whether Christian missionary, humanitarian, disaster relief, or military. Each standard unit with open floor plans can accommodate six to eight people. For privacy, partition walls can be added as well, proof of the flexibility of the designs.
Currently, Baldwin and his partners are arranging for the delivery of 100 FORTS units to Poland, one of the countries that have expressed their support for persecuted Christians in countries like Iraq and Ukraine. “We’re probably going to get 500 to 1,000 persecuted Christians out of that region between now and January 2016. There are 400,000 Christians in that region who are already being held,” stated Baldwin.
A man of action, Baldwin is not one to just watch from a distance and feel helpless. He constantly challenges Christians to be bold when it comes to saving souls, literally and figuratively speaking. “We’re here in America and we’re doing our thing and it seems like one of those things that’s so far away. What do you do? I think, well, let’s get those mobile living units over there. Let’s do what we can to rescue them because they deserve it,” enthused Baldwin, the star of upcoming movies “Tapestry,” “To the Wall,” and “Hoovey.”
He challenges everyone to visit his website and get involved. “Don’t think, ‘Oh, those persecuted Christians are so far away,’ that there’s nothing you can do. You can go to the website and donate…send us an email.”
He added: “For me, in these end times, it’s like a time crunch. I want to be as radical as I can. I want to do as awesome things as I possibly can. And Saintforts.com is one of those things.”
Baldwin’s impassioned appeal to fellow Christians is pointed. He said, “These Christians in that region are being killed. So the ones who are being held right now, they will be killed inevitably. The sooner we get these units over there, the sooner we get them out. The sooner we are blessing the Lord with those efforts.”
If you want to know more about Baldwin’s initiative or help out, visit www.stephenbaldwin.com/saintsforts or visit www.fortsusa.com for more information about FORTS.