June was full of activity. Quite a few of our families reported that they are beginning to harvest their cilantro and radishes. We have had a good amount of rain to maintain the home gardens and are hopeful that this will give the families an extra source of food. During this time each year, we include corn in the food bags. Last year’s harvest has been depleted and people struggle to have to buy their corn to make their main staple of corn tortillas. The sponsors are providing 20 lbs. of corn in their monthly food bags for their child. Apart from that, we were able to buy more corn from a special offering that I received during my US fundraising trip; to give each family a total of 40 lbs. of corn this month. The food bags will be extra heavy to carry home this month but no one will complain! With the loss of their last harvest, this extra assistance is very needed!
We celebrated our second quarter of birthdays for the children; recognizing those that have their birthdays during the months of April, May and June. Each child received a small gift, a coupon from their sponsor and were prayed over. Everyone present got to enjoy some cake and refreshment.
We sized each child for their new shoes, that will be handed out in July. Each family chose the style of shoes (school, tennis, low boots, high boots, sandals) that they want which will help facilitate us in placing the order. We had a wonderful response to our MYB (Middle of the Year Blessing) and want to recognize our amazing sponsors. Every child will receive their new shoes plus 3 pairs of socks at their July meetings!
Our nurse, Ana, had a “girl talk” with all of our girls that are 10 years old and older. That took in 44 girls. Ana talked about feminine hygiene, menstruation etc. and each girl received a gift pack of 2 pairs of underwear and reusable feminine products.
We did a survey of one of our groups in regard to their accessibility to a water supply. We are planning on offering a Christmas Blessing option that will give families an easier access to water for their family’s needs. Please note on your Family History Sheet whether your family has service of water.
We had a registration the end of June to sign up more children into the Embrace program. With the loss of the last planting, due to the hurricanes that passed through our area; we continue to find children who are malnourished. Sponsorship will make all the difference in the world for these children; just as our sponsors are doing for those that they currently support!
We want to give you a better look at just what the Embrace program can do to change the life of a child. We found Sergio in December 2018; he was brought to our registration to find new children to sign up for the Embrace program. Sergio has 6 other siblings in his family; he is also a special need child. Sergio’s biggest issue was that he was emaciated; he was six years old and he weighed 15.6 lbs! That is the weight of a child less than a year old, even here in Guatemala! He was truly nothing more than skin and bones. The mom allowed us to take some pictures, away from the view of others, without his shirt; to see his true condition. As much as the Embrace program provides; we knew that this was a special case where MORE was required! Thanks to a sponsor who took Sergio on and was willing to send extra; we were able to put Sergio on Pediasure milk and also on a product, called Plumpy Nut; that we make from peanut butter, oil, powdered sugar and powdered milk. Sergio had never walked in his 6 years; strictly due to the fact that he had no strength or muscle development to allow him to do so. After only 19 days of being on the “extra assistance” that we gave him; Sergio took his first “assisted steps”, with his mother holding his hands. In just six months, Sergio has more than doubled his body weight! On the nutritional chart that we use to evaluate the children; he went from extreme dark red (which is critical malnourishment) to coming into green (which is a healthy level of nutrition for a child in proportion to their height and weight)! Sergio is building his confidence to begin to walk on his own and strengthen the muscles that are finally developing for him; due to the proper nutrition and assistance that he has received! It has been a pure joy to see the transformation of this child and to realize the difference that can be made; as we give that child their needed nutrition. It is a testimony to the Embrace program and to 100s of sponsors that we have that make that change available to the children that they are helping. We praise God for the change that we have seen in Sergio and hope that it has impacted you as well. Help us to find more sponsors to begin to make that difference in the life of other children! The children are “out there”; we just need people who want to reach out to them and see that transformation happen!