Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Day Eight (Monday)

Monday morning, our last morning, we were able to sleep in a little before heading to the city to shop at Mi Esperanza. Mi Esperanza is a women's cooperative. They take poor women and give them a skill such as sewing, computers, etc. Once the ladies graduate from their program they help them find jobs and even employ some of them back to work in their own shop. It has been proven that a child's chance of survival increases 20% if the families income is in the hands of the mother.

After we spent significant time and money shopping we headed out to the city dump. As soon as we pulled in the smells and sights were overwhelming. Buzzards circled over head, cows and dogs roamed free, children played amongst the trash, and there were people everywhere digging through the trash heeps looking for food, shelter, and anything else that might help them survive. As we pulled up people started to line up at the back of the truck ready for the meal we were providing. We served each person a bowl of beans, rice, and tortillas as well as a bag of water.

After the dump we headed out to shop in a village called the Valley of Angels and from there we met up with the kids from Casa de Esperanza (the orphanage I worked at) to do dinner at KFC. We spent at least 2 hours feasting on chicken, playing, and loving on kiddos.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Pictures Day Seven

Day Seven (Sunday)

Wow, it is hard to believe that we only have one more day here before we start our journey back home. I can say for all of this that this trip has gone by very fast and most of us are not ready to get back on the plane quite yet.

Today we got up and headed out to Santa Ana where we spent the entire day. First we attended church with all of the kids from Casa. As soon as we came walking down the hill all of the children clung to someone, whether it be they knew them from a previous trip or were meeting them for the first time, and they sat together through the service. Dorian, the pastor, was prepared for a room full of Americans and had a special Power Point that was in English for all of us to follow along with.

After church we headed to the Orphanage where Ashley lived while she was down here and we just played with the kiddos until it was time for their lunch and we also got to do a little shopping in the Casa store. Once lunch time arrived we all walked down the road to a little restaurant where we had our lunch. Ashley had to read the menu for all of us, and most of us still didn't know what to expect when our food came out :)

After lunch we loaded on to the bus and went to a local village where we did some shopping. There was also a festival going on at the same time so we got to experience a little bit of the cultural side as well.

Then back to Casa de Esperanza it was for us to love some more on the kids. The girls were especially fond of riding on top of the boys shoulders and racing around. While we were there we also grilled some hot dogs up for supper and had a weanie roast with all the kids, and they were loving it. But no one could put the hot dogs away like our own team leader Ashley Lauer....who beat out everyone with 5 1/2 hot dogs! After our meal we continued to play with the kids and watch them run around, play soccer, get on the trampoline, or just hug you!!

Once it was time for the kids to go and get their showers we loaded back on the bus for our journey back to the Mission House. Once we arrived everyone went straight to their rooms and pretty much fell straight asleep as soon as their head hit the pillow! (Hence why this is written in the morning and not last night :) ) But most of us our up now and feeling good for the day! So you can check back in later to see what we did, and feel free to leave some comments on the blog because we love to read them here!!!
-Emily Beam

Saturday, June 26, 2010

pictures: Day Six

the internet is slow tonight but I promise to try and put pictures up later today.

Day Six (Friday)

As most of you probably know a tropical storm has moved into the area……and with it that tropical storm brought lots of rain! Nonetheless we loaded up the bus and headed out to a local village called San Miguel. Once there our team split up. The guys and a couple of girls went off to build yet another house while the rest of us stayed behind to set up a store. The plan was that we would use the local day care in that area to set up a store of the donated clothing, blankets, toys, hygiene items, etc. Ideally we thought we would set everything out on tables and allow the people from that village to come in and shop from what we had.

However, as I said that was the IDEAL situation. When we arrived at the entrance of the village we realized that the road into it was FAR to muddy to drive down. Making it impossible to get to the day care. After a few minutes of discussing our options we decided we would bring all the donations into the bus and separate them into black trash bags. We would then hand those bags out the door of the bus. As the girls started to sort out the stuff J.T. and I headed out into the village to let the people know they could come and purchase a bag. We ended up making close to 70 bags and selling them out of the bus. We made close to $75.

By allowing them to purchase their items (at a cheap price) it allows them to feel like it wasn’t just a hand out because we feel bad for them but instead it is like they earned it. By doing a store they are able to keep their dignity and we are able to make money to donate back to their village. In this case the money went to a local soccer program in the area. Kids have to pay to play in the league and some of them can’t afford it. Our money from the store went to allow those kids to play. The more we get them involved in a league like that the less time they will have to do other things.

Due to the change in plans our store went way quicker than we had planned. Therefore, we asked around to find out what else could be done in that village. We found out that there was mud that needed moved. The village we were in is located on the side of a mountain and every time it rains the mud just rushes down the side of it ….taking everything in its path with it. So 7 of us made the trek up the mountain and spent hours hauling away mud.

Despite the rain the other half of the team headed out to the house site. And as if the weather wasn't bad enough the house site was VERY difficult! The site was barely big enough for the size of house we build and was surrounded by brick walls on 3 sides. The guys ended up having to make the first wall with it laying down on the ground and then raising it up to put the posts down on into the ground.

The rain stopped for a while but by the afternoon the rain picked back up and it poured for the rest of the day. We were all soaking wet by the end. Yet no one uttered a single complaint all day. The team was amazing. I loved watching them work together for a greater cause.


Friday, June 25, 2010

Day Five

Today was a day not of physical exhaustion but of emotional exhaustion. We visited a hospital where we were able to hand out toys and blankets to the children that were being treated for various illnesses and sicknesses. It was especially hard for me to walk through and see children laying with oxygen masks and IV tubes in their arms because they were being treated for cancer. You wouldn't believe how many children were laying there with blank stares on their faces because there is nothing else they can do. So we gave them beanie babies and made paper airplanes with them. It was the least we could do to help ease the pain. It was hard, really hard to see them in that state.
Some of us went to the Pediatric floor and saw a child that was recently hit by a car because he was playing and ran into the street to get his ball. Another was one that was shot in his back as he was walking in to the grocery. It is these things that just break you a little more every day to see God's children in pain and uncomfortable but you cannot do anything but hand them a toy or a blanket.
Next, we visited a special needs orphanage where we were able to sit, walk, hold, laugh, and color with them. The joy that these little children had was humbling and uplifting. They have nothing and no one there for them aside for those that work there and care for them yet they God is present and with them. I have no doubt that these children experience God more than we do.
The next place we went to was a boys correctional facility. When we got there the Honduras World Cup game was on so we were able to sit there and watch it with them. There are about 50 boys ages 8 - 18 in a small room and you can imagine how excited they were when Honduras almost scored a goal. Some of us also played dominos and other board games with them as the game was on and after it was over. After the Hondo game some of the guys played futbol with the boys at the facility. It was fun to watch the gringos vs. the Hondurans. You can imagine how that turned out. Also, the boys at the facility made bracelets that support them and we were able to buy them as we left.
The last thing we did was visit another orphanage where we took a bunch of pizzas for them. While there some of the girls went and held the babies while the rest of us kicked a soccer ball around with them and played tag.
It was a great day playing with so many kids and watching them smile as we played with them. At the same time its hard to see all these kids and know they do not have parents and no one to take care for them. It is absolutely heartbreaking to experience this but it keeps bring me to one of my favorite verses in the Bible: Proverbs 23:17, "There is surely a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off." Even though life is hard and the pain is unbearable there will be a time when we will not be on this earth and all our pain and troubles will be gone. These children will not experience anything but the love and joy of God.

-Brent for the team

Thursday, June 24, 2010

random pictures

Unloading the truck!
These brave girls volunteered for pigeon poop duty!

We spent an afternoon playing soccer with the kids from the Micah Project.

Day Four: Jesus Statue

Tonight we went to the Jesus Statue to do our devotional. The statue sits on the edge of a mountain overlooking the city. Just as we were leaving for the statue it began to rain but we decided to try and go anyways. We hadn't been there more than a few minutes when it began to rain REALLY hard. We all hurried up the stairs to seek shelter literally underneath the feet of Jesus. We stayed there under the statue singing and doing our devo. As I stood their getting wet from rain I was struck at the irony that it was US who were standing outside in the rain while two families in the dump community were pillowing their heads in a brand new and very DRY house! :) God is so good.

Day Four (Thursday)

Today was a build day. We headed out to the city dump to build in what has become known as the "dump community." It is literally located at the front of the dump. We split up into two different groups and within 5 hours we had completed two houses in the community. My house site built for a family of 5. They had been living in a shack the size of small car. The other team built for a family of 8.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Day Three (Wednesday)

Today our group met up with our friend Amber again. Amber works with the homeless people in one area of the city and God recently blessed her with an 18 room building in that area of town. The building definitely needs some TLC. So our first stop today was to that building to work with Amber and her interns. We painted, scraped paint, tore out ceilings, and some of the luckier team members even got to clean two rooms full of pigeon poop and feathers! There are currently two homeless couples that are living in the building despite the current conditions. They welcome the safe place to stay that doesn't include the cold streets of the city. I was humbled beyond belief by one of the couples. They stayed with us all day helping us do everything. When it came to eat lunch (pizza) some of us were finishing painting a wall while the others ate. When the husband was offered a slice he replied that he would "wait to eat until his friends ate." He refused to eat until after we had finished working and had eaten. When his wife was offered pizza she said that they would wait for the leftovers. She, a homeless women with no income, was worried about US getting enough food. If you want to read more about Amber and her ministry check out her blog at

After our day of demolition and renovation we headed to the Basilica here in Tegucigalpa. It is a BEAUTIFUL catholic church and an amazing place of worship. The church is so huge it has an 11 second echo!

We then met up with Mark Connell and a few others to help unload a semi truck full of donations for Honduras. The truck had been shipped from Tennessee and was loaded with a phenomenal playground set, food, kitchen utensils, medical stuff, and so much more. As I carried box after box I couldn't help but think how much those boxes would bless the people of this country.