There are many needs in the world, but when we work together it is amazing what we can accomplish. When class begins tomorrow, every one of these desks will be the new study home for a student that attends the CDA God is Love School in the impoverished community of El Pozon, Cartagena, Colombia. These children live in very difficult economic conditions, but the communities and their homes are rich in spirit and capacity. They dream of what is possible in the future, and the education they are receiving is what will make their path out of poverty possible.
We are so thankful for the kind generosity of all who support us in our work and want to share with each of you that your generous hearts truly are making a difference for these children in El Pozon, and the other communities that we serve.
By Missy Christie de Acosta | President - Conviventia
The Bible tells us that the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve others and give His life as ransom for many. We had declared that 2017 would be a year of restoration, a year during that which had been lost would be recovered, and that is exactly what I saw take place! Young girls living in dark circumstances, whose hope and joy were lost, advanced in pursuit of their dreams; others had fairytale weddings, rejoicing amongst the goodness of God in their lives. Parents filled with pride as they watched their children graduate from high school- a privilege that they themselves were denied. Families destroyed by violence and abuse reconciled. Young men lost in drug addiction and criminality recovered their sense of dignity, as they completed training at our trade schools; many having never attended school before. People discovering the goodness of God amidst natural disasters, such as the mudslides in Mocoa, Putumayo. These are just a few of the ways in which we saw God bring restoration to precious lives!
I also witnessed faithful workers devoting their lives to the service of Christ in each of the communities where the Lord has placed us. Their load was made lighter thanks to the volunteers and interns who have joined their hearts and hands with those of the team in Colombia. By working together, they opened powerful channels of blessing and restoration. Additionally, it was touching to see our staff and children praying and giving to help our friends and supporters after hurricane Harvey caused devastation in Texas.
None of this would have been possible without your friendship. We are therefore very grateful for your partnership!
As we look back on 2017, I’m also glad to report that last year our organization was evaluated in a variety of financial and transparency metrics, achieving an overall score of 4.7 out of 5. We want you to know that we will diligently work to not only maintain but improve this ranking. Your support is fundamental to advancing our mission, and we take your investment seriously. Our many initiatives, including our schools, community development efforts, family strengthening program, humanitarian aid missions, leadership development, promotion of safer environments for children, and employment and entrepreneurship mediation and support are only possible because of the financial support of our loyal and generous donors.
In this update report we want to share a little more about our educational programs in Colombia. Our 4 Christian schools are in impoverished communities outside the cities of Cartagena, Bogota and Barranquilla, Colombia. Gangs, drugs, violence, broken families and lack of economic opportunity are the daily realities for children and families living in these communities that we serve. To help the children in these communities requires more than delivering education.
By providing a strong Christian education through our "School with Purpose" educational model, we are committed to address the emotional, spiritual and physical needs of each student, as well as the traditional scholastic development of knowledge, reasoning and thinking. It is this holistic education that empowers our students to take leadership and accountability for their lives and develop their faith and life plan, leading into fruitful and fulfilling lives.
We have just finished the school year in Colombia, and have watched our senior classes graduate. Part of the graduation ceremony includes each student sharing about what the CDA schools have meant to them. It is powerful and uplifting to hear their stories, how their time at CDA has made such an amazing transformation to their lives. To listen to these confident new leaders as they go out into the world or on to University is inspiring to our team and our work.
We want to thank each of you for being a part of our team, for supporting these students and their education. May you have a wonderful Christmas filled with many blessings and peace.
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