Most children served at the Kaya Center were spending much of their time working and hanging out in the streets and were not attending school. Children served in the full-day program come from very unstable, poor homes, many with a history of abuse and neglect in their families. At the Kaya Center, children receive a meal, emotional and educational support, clothing and educational materials, and a safe a stable environment to learn and play.
Over the past 5 years, we’ve served many young girls through our programs at the Kaya Center and are grateful for that. It’s been great to help children who are entering street life but still have stable enough homes that we can support their families and prevent high-risk children from entering the streets. While this has enabled us to serve girls, who we previously did not serve, it’s also made the need for a girls' residential home painfully obvious to us. Without the possibility of a residential home we keep encountering the same problem: we cannot help some girls. It’s not because we don’t have the skills or desire, it’s because we don’t have the resources. Just like boys, there are girls in our program living in unstable or abusive homes or simply not in a home at all. These girls would be best served by entering a residential program. Kaya has the experience, partnerships and desire necessary to serve these children, but we need the facilities to do so.
Thank you for partnering together with us to transform lives in Bolivia. Please consider a donation in any amount to Kaya to help us continue this vital ministry.
The Children. They are the common thread that runs through our stories... about why we support Kaya; why we feel drawn to this cause. Children on the streets may feel invisible to most, but when we hear their stories and look into their eyes, we truly "see" them. By listening and caring, we've decided that these children, and their life stories, are important. And by taking action, we're doing something about it. Through our decision to give, we are changing their lives for the better, letting them know that they are not forgotten.
One of our earliest promises was to "tell the stories" of the children whom Kaya is privileged to serve. So this Christmas season, we share with you the story of one boy, Angel, who -- abandoned by his mother -- spent his earliest childhood years living on the streets with an alcoholic father. The one wish he held onto was that he would, one day, be reunited with his brothers again. With your help, this wish came true. Please remember the many other children like Angel, living on the streets of Bolivia in severe poverty, beyond what most of us can imagine, holding onto nothing more than the hope that their lives might change.
Consider Jonathan. His mother, with whom he lived on the streets for years, was involved in the sex trade and contracted AIDS. When Jonathan's mother died, our friends asked Kaya to welcome Jonathan into our home because Kaya was the only organization they trusted to care for him. Or little Hector, whose mother died when he was just five. To help his father suppport the family, he left school at age 8 to earn money, watching cars. With Kaya's help, Hector now attends school in the mornings, and returns to the Kaya Center for lunch and academic support in the afternoons.
When we hear their stories, we are reminded, too, of how our own lives sit in stark contrast to the lives of these young, struggling children. How blessed we are to have the means to help. So, please consider a gift in the amount that is right for you. It is your caring that makes a difference in the lives of the children!