We're helping survivors of a terrible war find their way.
In 1999, Andrew Loveall went on a short-term mission trip that changed his
life. Feeling a divine call on his life, he quit his job and moved his family to
Guatemala, working with a clinic serving the desperately poor who scavenge
at Guatemala City's massive municipal dump. There he began to encounter Guatemala's street children. Their needs overwhelmed him.
Thousands of kids live on the streets. Incredibly, they are not abandoned, but come from destitute families who send their youngsters - as young as five - to beg and make money in tourist towns such as at Antigua and Quetzaltenango. There they shine shoes, sell souvenirs and serve as tour guides. Many are victimized by those who take advantage of children. Few go to school. Often they are detested by local officials - particularly for coming from rural, indigenous Mayan tribes.
Over the next decade, Andrew developed a unique "business model" of working with local officials to establish schools, clinics and other infrastructure in partnership with generous friends from the United States. Once established, the schools become eligible for funding through the Guatemalan ministry of education - and do not need as much help from America. A mentoring program also developed - with Andrew giving key youth leadership roles in local projects. Today some of the fruit of Andrew's work can be seen in New Hope for Guatemala's staff members Luis Hernandez, Josue Esteban and Geovani Pichillo.
Interested in learning more?
Luis, right, meets with Andrew and the president of the El Tesoro village council as well as a local pastor.
Luis has observed the importance of including local leaders in any project. He spent hours planning upcoming projects at the refugee village and agreeing with leaders about what building materials and school supplies to buy - and which medical supplies are needed.
Kids such as Luis don't need to sneak into America as illegal immigrants after riding the tops of trains across Mexico. Thanks to New Hope for Guatemala, they have an education and some hope for their lives.
With a little help, they can be equipped to bring education, health, hope and faith to Guatemala – as tomorrow’s educated and hope-filled leaders!
Here's Geovani doing hands-on engineering at at the school in El Tesoro. Andrew discovered him on the street in Antigua when Geovani was 14 years old. After catching up with his elementary school studies, he was scholarshiped through high school by mission partners and then to vocational school.
Now Geovani serves those in need in his own native land. All of our Guatemalan team members came up from the streets and rough life of Guatemala.
Their desire to serve their own people springs from the help they received growing up.
They are smart, educated and skilled. All they ever needed was a chance to learn, a chance to succeed.
Josue is a hard worker, remarkable role model and a key to the success of our project at El Tesoro.
When we lose children, we lose the future. They are our legacy.
New Hope for Guatemala is working with little girls and boys – and with bigger girls and boys – to help make sure that they have a chance.
These Guatemalan children do not need to come illegally to the United States in order to have some hope and an education; with a little help, all this can be done right where they are! Education. Health. Access. Respect. Faith. Family. Confidence.
All these combines to give real hope, raising up responsible leaders in their own communities and and families ... to build their future ... and ours.
Support and pray, please, for these kids - and for New Hope for Guatemala.