Verbo Nicaragua Development Fund

VNDF seeks to help impoverished Nicaraguans break out of the cycle of intergenerational poverty into which they were born by providing access to education, employment, health care, and affordable credit. VNDF is an international advocate for Verbo Nicaragua ministries which is based in Managua, Nicaragua, has been in existence since 1976 and operates nationwide. Nicaragua is the second-poorest country in the Western Hemisphere.
Jul 2, 2014

Moving Mountains in Faith with the Help of Friends

Austin Samaritans team at CCLE!
Austin Samaritans team at CCLE!

Life has been fun and exciting as of late and we wanted to share about some of the things that have been going on at the Club. After the miracle of raising $26,000 in less than a month to finish paying for the new location we’ve been working to finish the second building that was left unfinished by the previous owner. It is a big shell of a building that we hope turn into our Tutoring Center/Dining Hall. A multipurpose building…remember “Cafetoriums”???

We had a group of High School Students from Atlanta come down with a friend and they took the first crack at working on the building. Clearing the trees that had grown inside, leveling the floor and laying a concrete floor inside - these kids were troopers, working in the blaring sun in the hottest time of year here in Nicaragua.

The team also had lots of fun with the kids at the Club. A father and daughter combo took care of lunch one of the days. He works as a distributor for McDonalds back home so we made the contact in Managua and gave the kids a really fun treat….MickeyDzzzz at lunch time!

Following up on the Atlanta team was a group from Austin Samaritans in Texas. They busted some concrete work too and “threw mud” at all the unfinished walls for the final layer - lots of hard work and another step towards finishing the building.

The Austin Samaritans group also brought the drama…in the form of the story of the “Good Samaritan.” Costumes and all, they taught the children one of the great parables that Jesus taught. A very important lesson for children to learn at a young age, do not just pass by those who are in trouble. Stop what you are doing, help the ones in trouble, and go beyond what you think you are able to do! It was hard not to smile at all the cute little robbers though!

A blessing from the US Embassy Auction…we were able to get two giant tents for 1/4 of the cost at auction. We put one up inside the building we are working to finish since there is no roof yet. This way we could use the space since we have the floor poured now. We used the other tent for shade by the kitchen so the kids don’t have to stand in the sun when they wait in line for lunch…shelter from the Sun. They will provide shelter from rain too, which will be great during the rainy season. These tents will also give great shelter for the students in our tutoring program that used to meet outside under a tree. The tree wouldn’t have worked for the rains hahaha!

Thank you for your continued prayers for Club Esperanza - with your help the lives of young people are changed! If you know of people who want to support the Club please let them know that all NEW recurring monthly donations pledged on July 16 will be MATCHED 30% by an anonymous donor to Global Giving. That means if you commit to giving $100 per month it will be raised to $130. If you have any questions please contact our ministry partner Katie Adams at katieadamsmd@gmail.com.

We are excited to see all that God is doing at Club Esperanza and are grateful for your continued partnership!

McDonald
McDonald's is a BIG treat!
The new tents from the U.S. Embassy are GREAT!
The new tents from the U.S. Embassy are GREAT!
Soon to be a new multipurpose area for CCLE!
Soon to be a new multipurpose area for CCLE!
These "robbers" are too darn cute!
These "robbers" are too darn cute!
The blazing Nicaraguan sun won
The blazing Nicaraguan sun won't stop this team!
Jul 2, 2014

Maryland Team Holds 1st Women's Outreach in Sebaco

Crafts cross all language barriers!
Crafts cross all language barriers!

A team of six American women from Crossroads Community Church recently held the first women's outreach event at the Training Center in Sebaco. In-country project leader Ana Julia Orozco welcomed the team who spoke and spent the afternoon with more than 30 women from 4 of the 12 villages being served by the training center. The women came from Albellanas, Mojon, Bacacan, and Cerro Grande.

One of the highlights of the day was hearing from Lilliam Orozco who teaches at one-room school in the village of Albellanas. She gave her testimony about how hard she has worked to complete school and become a teacher and how hard her mother has always worked to support her (her mother was there too which was so sweet!). She was very emotional. She also spoke very seriously to the mothers that it was important for them to make sure their kids came to school EVERY day and that they needed to help them with their homework EVERY day. A great Mom from Albellanas - a single Mom with four kids who is only 22 herself - said that even though she can't read or write she sits with her kids every day to make sure they are doing their work. And Lilliam confirmed that this Mom is doing it and she held her up as an example for making such a sacrifice for her kids.

The Maryland gals enjoyed helping serve lunch to the women and their kids - what a feast! Afterward the team set out supplies for them to make posters with their children's names and a note that they loved being their Mothers to put up in their homes so their children would always know that their mothers loved them. The team shared encouragement about how even though Jesus' mother Mary was a poor, young, girl in a small village she gave Jesus the greatest gifts anyone could give a child - the gifts of love, acceptance, and schooling. The women had a blast making posters and glitter was everywhere!

Before the women left to board buses for the 1.5 hour drive and then 2+ hour walk home, Ana Julia called each woman up to give her a bag of "canasta basica" items - a bar of soap, 5 pounds of rice, 5 pounds of beans, a liter of oil, and several pounds of tomatoes, onions, peppers, and some other vegetables. As soon as the women left the skies opened and we experienced a torrential downpour - which was very welcome as the rainy season had been late in coming!

We look forward to another team coming to serve at the Training Center in August. A group of men and women from Cedar Run Community Church in Oak Hill, Virginia will be doing some construction work on the center and working with men, women and children coming in from the 12 remote villages we are targeting. Look for another update after that!

Each participant received food to take home.
Each participant received food to take home.
Playing with the moms
Playing with the moms' kids during the event!
Moms from 5 villages came for the outreach event.
Moms from 5 villages came for the outreach event.

Links:

Mar 3, 2014

A New School Year and a New Challenge!

Lunch is served at Club Esperanza!
Lunch is served at Club Esperanza!

The Nicaraguan school year runs from February - November so Club Cristiano La Esperanza is up and running! On the Monday of registration, parents were lined up at 5:00 a.m. to get their children signed up for our programs. When Sheyla (the Director) arrived, there was a crowd and she spent the entire day signing children up! It is a testimony to both the need in the community, as well as the quality of our staff and reputation we have earned in the neighborhood.

We have 341 students signed up this year!  We tried not to turn anyone away, but there is a waiting list for the preschool since we already have 98 preschoolers signed up.  Here is the list of the different programs that happen at Club Esperanza:

  • Community pre-school & kindergarden
  • Elementary school tutoring program
  • High school scholarship program
  • Feeding & nutrition program
  • "Lacrosse the Nations" sports program
  • Music & art classes

At Club Esperanza children have opportunities their parents could only dream of. Because of their parents' severe poverty these children would otherwise not get improved nutrition, one-on-one tutoring, early elementary developmental opportunities, and safe, supervised play!

Our new location has been the amazing key to our ability to do ministry in the neighborhood. When we signed the lease last year we needed $75,000 by January 2014 to completely pay off the balance. Although we weren't able to raise the entire amount, the seller has been gracious and granted us an extension on that deadline with only a small penalty. We currently have until the end of this month to raise the remaining $26,400.

The gifts you make here all go to ensuring that we can continue serving the 341 students whose families know that a faith-based education is the key to a hopeful future in this country. To learn more about the Club and its history please watch our video at: http://vimeo.com/68180873.

Siblings caring for each other at Club Esperanza!
Siblings caring for each other at Club Esperanza!
Kids don
Kids don't mind waiting for a good lunch
Now THIS is hope made real
Now THIS is hope made real

Links:

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