Guatemala 2019 Mission Trip
It’s been a few months since you’ve heard from us, but we wanted to inform you we have a new mission trip opportunity from November 9-16, 2019 to Guatemala City! As you may have heard, Haiti is still under a Level 4 – ‘Do Not Travel’ restriction and though we’ve attempted to go back both in August 2018 and May 2019, the door closed both times due to the unrest there, and we believe God may be redirecting us elsewhere for the time being.
Since we’re a short-term missions mobilization organization, we’ve always partnered with long-term organizations working on the ground since they will continue the work even after we’re gone. This year, we will be partnering with an organization called Potter’s House, which has been working in Guatemala City since 1986. It was founded by two Guatemalan women who were asked by some American friends to go and hand out blankets in the Guatemala City garbage dump on Christmas Eve 1986. Though they weren’t initially thrilled, once they did it, God put on their heart to quit their jobs and start rescuing ‘treasures’ (aka kids from the dump) full-time. Unlike organizations that simply address economic or physical poverty, Potter’s House seeks to deliver five holistic development programs through their community centers. They integrate the love of God in every single program with an overarching emphasis on Christian life. Through prayer walks, daily devotionals and bible studies customized to different age groups they encourage communities to walk alongside God.
The 5 holistic development programs Potter’s House does through their community centers, which are strategically placed in the poorest areas of Guatemala City:
1. Family Development – They provide spiritual guidance for the families in the communities. Their focus is on reconnecting the family as a unit by helping them learn how to love and support each other. They teach them how to effectively communicate with each other, using kind and loving words rather than using hate words.
2. Education – They holistically equip and shape the lives of the Treasures from elementary school through university. Not only do they teach them academic subjects but they also teach them Christian values and principles. They actively seek ways of improving the cognitive and emotional aspect of the children through different activities.
3. Health and Nutrition – They provide medical attention for the Treasures, treating their illnesses and supporting them when a serious illness strikes. In addition, they educate them in the basics of disease prevention and personal hygiene. They also provide nutritious meals that help the children reach the national group average for their height and weight
4. Micro-Enterprise – They provide financial resources and guidance to small business owners; enabling them to grow, increase their income, and improve their lives and the lives of their family. They are taught the importance of saving money and, how to not fall victim to loan sharks or other organizations where interest rates are high.
5. Community Development – They promote community participation and collaboration in searching for solutions to their problems; through the implementation of community projects—infrastructure, equipping, evangelize—they support the self-management of the communities. They train community leaders to develop their community.
Some of the PROJECTS we will be able to do there with a projected team of 30 are:
1. Construction – 3 cinder block homes ($5,700 / home) – Our group will finance and assist in the construction of three 323 square foot home for needy families. Construction costs will include cinder block walls, a cement floor, a corrugated metal and fiberglass roof, installation of electrical service, installation of a bathroom (toilet and shower), sewer hook-up, and the installation of an outdoor laundry sink. Two weeks prior to your arrival, contracted workers will begin the initial construction. Upon arrival, we will be expected to finish the house by installing the cement floor and roof, stucco the interior and exterior surfaces, and complete all painting. When the project is completed, our team of volunteers will present the keys to the family during a key Ceremony and prayer session. You will be assisted by the Potter’s House staff and local contractors.
2. Home Equipping – Bunk beds Assembly and Staining ($285/each for 4) – Our group will have the opportunity to assemble and stain wooden bunk beds. Upon completion of assembling beds, we will present the beds and mattresses to the recipient family.
3. Evangelism – Prayer Walks ($528) – This project involves meeting and praying with the Treasures in their homes. We will hear a brief testimony from the family. We are encouraged to ask questions of the host family and to offer prayerful support to them. This will be our opportunity to share the Gospel. You will also present a gift bag containing food and a Bible.
4. Evangelism – Vacation Bible School – VBS ($420) – Here we will participate in our Bible School project with children from the surrounding communities. The project involves teaching Bible lessons, playing games, and providing snacks to the children. Volunteers will prepare the Bible School lessons and activities. Our creativity is encouraged in developing these projects.
5. Health & Nutrition – Sponsoring Lunches ($260) – This is an especially enjoyable opportunity to assist in serving lunch to the children in our Education Program. We encourage you to spend time talking with the children and you’re even welcome to take photos of your experience. A translator will be available to help with communication. Younger volunteers will find playing with the Treasures lots of fun.
6. Community Center Continuation Fund ($1,500) – The General Contribution Fund is a donation that supports the ministry of Potter’s House, these resources allow Potter’s House to continue working the 365 days of a year.
If you’d like to be part of this year’s team, the cost is $652 for lodging, meals, transportation, translators, security, etc, and a plane ticket is approximately $500. We also encourage you to adopt one or more of the projects with your youth group and/or church and raise as much as can for them. Fundraising activities are a great way to bond with the youth from your church, while helping people who are in legitimate poverty. You will even be able to work on what you sponsored and show photo/video proof of the results to your church/youth group!
If you’d like to be part of this year’s team, please fill out the Interest Form below and we will add you to the Guatemala 2019 e-mail list to send you additional information in regards to areas of involvement, deadlines, payment information, etc
We can’t wait for this first Guatemala mission trip and we’re hoping you will join us for this new missions expedition! Blessings!
The T4T Team
P.S. If you are not able to come but you would like to donate towards the projects, it’s easiest to donate straight to Potter’s House Guatemala through the link below and just mention ‘Treasures4Troubles’ or ‘T4T Nov 9-16, 2019 mission trip’ in the note. You will receive a receipt for your donation.