|Sad backpack, ready for Haiti|
Some of you remember that I was supposed to go on a mission trip to Haiti in December, but then we couldn't go because of the growing violence the the days before we were supposed to leave. The team rescheduled for March, but because of my responsibilities at camp I was unable to go. I decided to set aside the money I raised, and keep an eye out for future trips.
While I was looking for a trip to join, I was starting to envy the people I know who were working with kids on mission trips. I had been focusing on construction trips in Haiti because of the need there and the fact that I don't mind roughing it (even if I don't have any construction skills). Then last spring I got an email about a mission trip to Nicaragua that would happen October 22-29. To be honest, I have never had an interest in going to South or Central America, but something about this trip jumped out at me. The dates would fit well with my Pecometh schedule, I know the pastor co-leading the trip, and the work would be centered around El Ayudante Family Enrichment Center in Leon! So with that I was planning to go on another mission trip, but this time I already had money raised and had all the right shots!
Now my trip is less than a month away, and I'm starting to get really excited! We had a meeting with the team last month and got some more information. In Nicaragua, many kids are placed in orphanages by their families who are struggling to make ends meet; for this reason the Nicaraguan government has placed an emphasis on placing kids with family members rather than keeping them in group homes. El Ayudante used to be an orphanage but now that all of the kids have been placed in homes or adopted, they focus on resourcing families. During our time there we will probably do some work at the center (possibly painting some rooms), as well as visiting schools to do crafts, hand out snacks, and donate school supplies! In addition we get to spend time with some of the kids who are served by the center (which might include taking them out for ice cream, and taking kids buy new clothes).
Most of my money has been raised, but if you would like to donate money or supplies to the team, please let me know. And of course please keep me in your prayers! I never wanted to go to Nicaragua before, but now that I am getting ready to go I am excited about learning about a new culture, and doing my small part to support families who are struggling to raise children in poverty. I am going to take some dresses that the Girls II Greatness program made during summer camp, and I'll also be getting together some school supplies and other things. Thanks for your support!
Supplies need at El Ayudante:
- flip flops, over size 1
- pens, red, black, blue
- permanent markers
- dry erase markers, dry erasers
- paper, plain
- plastic rulers
- play dough
- printer paper
- 3 ring binders, inch and a half
- hand towels
- mattress covers and sheets for twin beds
- hygiene items, shampoo, soap, toothpaste