I recently made a visit to our Childcare Worldwide office in Peru. What an amazing trip! I was blessed by the kids we serve in Lima. It was yet another great reminder of the wonderful work I get to do as president of this ministry.
Our work in Peru is unique in that we provide child sponsorship programs as well as social economic opportunities for women. I was able to meet several ladies who benefit from a CCW provided sewing machine.
CCW Peru provides classes where women are taught how to sew clothes. The clothes they make can be sold at a profit which helps to give these ladies an economic benefit. The income from these micro businesses contribute toward self sufficiency. I really enjoyed meeting these women, and to see how proud they were that they now have a skill that can bring extra money and help their families.
In addition to the sewing program, CCW Peru conducts baking classes! The women are taught to create a variety of baked goods over a 3 month period. Once they finish the classes, they have the skills required to start a catering business or get hired as a baker somewhere in their community.
A highlight of my trip was a home dedication. CCW Peru builds homes for families on the hills of Comas, a suburb of Lima.
When I first joined CCW, I was amazed that a home could be built for Peru for just $3700. We’ve helped hundreds of families through the years move out of cardboard shacks and into homes with stable foundations, solid walls and electricity. I was proud to dedicate a home funded by David and Lynne Nelson of Bellingham.
The house has a couple of bedrooms and a kitchen. CCW supplies bedding and cooking utensils!
The family was so grateful for the gift of this home, and we prayed that God would continue to bless them.
Saturday’s are for Life Centers! Sponsored children gather in churches, homes, and (in India) even on rooftops to learn Bible lessons, memorize scripture, get a meal and enjoy the friendship of one another. I love seeing the joy in the kids faces when they come to their Life Center and praise God for all he has done for them. During this visit, I was able to witness the food prep that is involved with feeding sponsored kids. Volunteers arrive at our Peru office at 4 am in the morning to cook rice with veggies and sausage.
We also serve fresh apple juice and bananas.
After all the prep work is done, more volunteers transport the food to each Life Center. I was impressed by the coordination it took to prepare all the food and get it to the kids!
A key part of the Life Center is Bible teaching. Our kids use Christian Character Building curriculum to help them learn about the Bible, and learn how to gain biblical character traits to use in their daily lives. I love hearing the children recite scripture from memory.
The real stars of the show are the Life Center teachers! These volunteers do what they do because they love the kids, and they want them to know Jesus! Their enthusiasm was contagious. Whether they were leading songs or telling a Bible story they were giving 100% to the kids. I’m so grateful for them!
I just can’t say enough about the kids in our Life Centers. They were joyful and full of gratitude to God for what he’s provided through the work of CCW.
I was impacted by something one of the kids said to me. A young girl mentioned that one of her fears is that she would be forgotten. These kids live way up on the hillside in Comas, and it’s easy for them to believe that no one really cares about where they live and how they battle extreme poverty every day.
I promised that as long as I am leading CCW, I will not forget them. I will visit them often and more importantly, hold them up in prayer. Could you join me? You can pray for these children to have open minds to accept the Gospel of Jesus Christ. You can pray that they remain safe as they walk, sometimes miles, to get to school. You can pray that they stay healthy. You can pray that they get a great education which can help lift them from poverty.
I can’t wait to go back to Peru and see these kids again. They were the highlight of my visit.