It’s a beautiful day in La Paz. The sun is shining brightly and the air is crisp. The Vision Team that has traveled from the States are with me, and as we walk from the hotel to the Kaya Center the team wonders what this day will bring. We turn the corner and hear the voices of children laughing and playing. The gates to the courtyard open and kids come running out, screaming with excitement, to see strangers who have traveled from afar, to visit, to play, to learn. While I’m observing all of the excitement around me I’m told to turn around, and as I do, I hear “Christina!” and running towards me, with the most beautiful smile across his face, is my Godson, Ysrael. I love this moment.
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.