January was a very busy month for us to say the least! Sarai, our Project Coordinator traveled to Panama on our behalf to represent His Hands International at CIMA, an international movement to encourage youth to explore missions. In addition our ministry was represented in Nicaragua a week later at another CIMA event. Getting today’s youth involved in international missions, even in other Latin American Countries is very important. As a result of these events, we have a team of 6 youth coming this week. Two from Columbia, one from Salvador, two from Panama, and one from Honduras! We are excited to welcome this team to Guatemala to be the hands and feet of Jesus with us.
One of the other really cool things we are blessed to take part in, is our Living Waters Project. This project is all about providing a clean source of drinkable water for a poor village in Guatemala, in the name of Jesus. The name “Living Waters”, comes from the story of the Samaritan woman at the well in John 4, and in verse 10 specifically, Jesus tells the woman about this living water, speaking about himself. The Samaritan woman then asks Jesus about this living water. And just like Jesus did, we use projects like this to share the love of Jesus and tell about His ultimate love and sacrifice to provide us eternal life, or living water.
When we build a well, it is for the community. We retain ownership of the equipment, that way if a municipal water line is ever brought into this village, we can move our equipment to the next remote, poor village and begin another work. However, we still transfer ownership or responsibility to the people in the village. This provides a high level of security for the equipment and prevents abuse. The people look out for their new water source. As part of this transfer of ownership, it is very important that we find the right people and appoint them as a leader in charge of the water. We teach them how to perform regular maintenance to protect the wells from bacteria, how to clean the filtration system, and general troubleshooting. As well being a point, or several points of contact in the village for the people to contact for help.
By empowering the people to help themselves, we are educating them, giving them the tools they need to change, giving them a hand up not just a hand out, and this process gives them the confidence they need to succeed. The next generation of children are watching! They are the ones that will break this cycle of poverty in their families lives. Just look how excited the children are over the logo we recently placed on our truck. We are a symbol of hope and change, and they know that.
Will you partner with us in this journey? We are on changing lives in Guatemala! More than ever, we need regular monthly support. Any amount will help make a difference.