This is an update straight from our staff in Guatemala!
Project/Programs Currently Running:
- Kids with special needs Sponsorship program
- Education Sponsorship program
- Margarita´s House Project
- Marta’s Special Request Project
- Round tables with Guatemala Próspera.
- Organizational strengthening
Latest update for the community as a whole:
1) Kids with Special Needs Sponsorship program, this program was launched on July 25th and 26th 2019. This program is currently helping kids with special needs, 5 of these kids are from El Pajal. With the help of donors in the States, the 410 Bridge is supporting these kids by taking care of the fees for transportation and therapy sessions at the Rehab Center “Solidaridad con los Niños”. This center provides our kids with physical therapy, speech therapy and psychological therapy. There are 2 more kids who have been identified so we will receive their information soon for sponsorship.
2) Education Sponsorship Program, some kids from this Primary School are enrolled already. With the help of the teachers of the school, kids with a lot of needs were selected. We have 1st, 2nd and 3rd graders. With the help of donors, we want to provide supplies for kids, supplies for teachers, and providing a meal when the Government of Guatemala does not provide it. Most of our kids in the communities go to school without having breakfast. Also, we want the sponsored students to receive some extra benefits such as medical care and dental care (we are still talking about this). The LC and teachers from the school must work a lot with parents, to educate them that there is more to learning than reading and writing and they shouldn’t pull their kids out of school once they learn these things.
3) Margarita´s House Project, Margarita is an 80+ years old woman from El Pajal. Her and her husband live on a very steep hill in the community, she has broken hips and she basically crawls all over her house. Her husband works in the coffee fields but it is getting hard for him to find job due to his age. Thanks to the help of 410 bridge, Chick fil A, and the Leaders from El Pajal, Margarita was provided with a new home to live in that is suitable for her condition.
4) Marta´s Special Request Project, Marta is a young woman from El Pajal and she lives in a small house with her 2 siblings and her elderly sick mother. Marta has mental issues and problems with her intestine, she has a rectal prolapse. Her economic conditions have not allowed her family to take care of her as she needs. They tried to get her a surgery in the public Hospital but it was impossible due the strikes and protest that the Ministry of Health has been going through. We have sent and special request to find a solution to Marta´s condition, we hope that with the help of donors Marta can get the surgery she needs.
5) Round Tables with Guatemala Próspera, this is a 30 week program, following the John C. Maxwell book “La transformacion está en Mi”. This discipleship program aims to instill values in leaders and decision-makers in our communities. Leaders from El Pajal will be part of the first workshop September the 25th so later, they can do round tables with 5 more people from their community and the impact will be greater!
6) Organizational strengthening, for more than two years, 410 bridge has been working alongside with community leaders, pastors, authorities, catholic leaders, and women representatives from El Pajal. By strengthening them socially, organizationally and spiritually, we hope they can work on their own development a successful community.
Biggest challenge the community is facing, if any?
The lack of water is the biggest challenge the community has. They do not have access to clean water and as a result of this, diseases and pollution are increasing in the community. The 410 Bridge is currently working on a solution to the water problem that will be implemented this fall.
Story of a beneficiary with quote:
Mauricio is a 22-year-old boy from El Pajal. He is a young man who has Spina Bifida which results in his inability to walk. Despite his condition, his desire to learn and will to live are incredible. He learned to read and write on his own and his next project is to learn to play guitar. Mauricio loves reading his Bible and sharing what he learns with others. We hope that he will be able to share the gospel with the rest of the families who have kids in the program, with therapists and all the people he gets to interact with.
Mauricio is part of the program for children with special needs and is attending the rehabilitation center to strengthen his upper body and thus be able to mobilize on his own by being able to get in his wheelchair or to his bed.
How can we be praying for the community?
- Pray for the community Leaders to be wise in making decisions.
- Pray for the safety of the kids and parents enrolled in the Special Needs Sponsorship Program when commuting from their houses to the Rehab Center every Thursday.
- Pray for the kids from El Pajal, they are the future leaders of this community.
- Pray for finding a solution for the water problem they have.