One of the things I love about Mexico is the people’s spirit and positive attitude. The Mexicans are always smiling and laughing and starting up conversations with complete strangers. Even those who live in untenable situations are always gracious and welcoming and extremely grateful for what they receive from others to help them move forward in their lives.
Family income in Mexico has been losing purchasing power. Prices for food, propane, and school uniforms, for example, have increased significantly. Millions of Mexicans earn incomes below the poverty line and have difficulty meeting their most basic subsistence needs.
A number of families in Vista Hermosa, where our charity serves, live in homes made of tin, cardboard and/or pieces of wood, with little or no access to basic services such as piped-in water, electricity, and basic sewage.
The above photo is just one of many homes in Vista Hermosa. It’s definitely heartbreaking but our mission is to help ease the burden of those who are less fortunate. Food hampers at Christmas is our way of letting people know we care and that their circumstances matter to us.
That’s why we decided five years ago to help with Christmas food hampers and give donors the opportunity to share in the joy of giving.
Having food on their tables is a big deal. Especially at Christmas.
Our aim is for 250 hampers – or more – for single moms, single dads, large and small families, the disabled and the elderly. We now have 44 food hampers…and counting!
Each hamper costs $25.00 US/CDN (500 pesos) and includes 25 basic food and personal hygiene items, and a blanket for those cold nights.
Donations can be made on our FB page, at Allende Books in La Paz (125-4438) or just click the ‘Make a Donation’ button at the bottom of this newsletter. Canadians can donate through our website in Canadian dollars.
Please help us reach our goal to make Christmas special for our less fortunate brothers and sisters!
When sponsors visit with their students, magic happens. The sponsors, students and families get to participate in each other’s lives, even if only for a short time.
Joan and Mike Whalen visited with the two students they’re sponsoring and a former student, with whom they still keep in contact. In their visits, there are moments they get to meet not only the students, siblings and parents, but grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. Sometimes the neighbours get involved, too.
In fact, one neighbour piqued our curiosity when we noticed ceramic figures hanging from the side of her house, which she moulds, paints, and sells to help support her family. Not ones to resist something for a good cause, we bought five.
Our 13th Anniversary Celebration
Who can honestly say they’ve walked by a jigsaw puzzle without attempting to fit in at least one piece before moving on?
One of our activities in this ‘Let’s Play’ monthly event was solving jigsaw puzzles. The boys went for an action puzzle and the girls, The Lion King, with a real-time, fluffy lion’s mane.
Since each puzzle had less than 50 pieces, I figured that the kids would knock them off in about 10 minutes. Not so! What did surprise me was not only the amount of time taken to finish a puzzle, but of the ten children (and high school kids, too) who worked on the games, only one girl actually completed one. Amazingly, the rest gave up.
Along with puzzling puzzles, the face painters took their work to a whole new level. And a children’s event wouldn’t be the same without the game Pie Face, where you risk getting smashed in the face with whipping cream. The kids are crazy about it. Lots of laughs with these sweet children! More photos here.
What do you have when you put twenty-three little kids in a room with nothing to do? Chaos.
Because the wait can be a while, we try and keep the children busy. We’re now onto them and bring things to keep them amused while waiting to see Dr. Ortega, the paediatrician, who once a month, graciously offers up his Saturday afternoons to see sick children, without cost, in the community Vista Hermosa.
Dr. Ortega and his wife, Julia, handed out toy cars, balls, games, books, clothing, and stuffed animals, and our charity, crayons and coloured paper. Suddenly, all is quiet! It’s quite fascinating to watch the super active boys sit quietly with their stuffed animals while colouring!
It’s also pretty awesome to see families taking advantage of a free medical consultation with a specialist.
This will be Dr. Ortega’s last visit of the year and on behalf of the families that have taken advantage of his and Julia’s presence, we want to thank them from the bottom of our hearts for giving up those Saturdays to see sick kids and bring hope to their mothers. More photos here and here.