• Guatemala,  Justice

    Turning Pain into Resilience and Hope

    We want the children in La Limonada to reach their potential. We want to see their God-given abilities drawn out and made to flourish. We want to see them living full lives in Jesus. But the reality for children growing up in this “red zone” – a term given by the Guatemalan government to indicate danger to the rest of the city – is not very hopeful. From their earliest moments of life, most of these children have known hunger and trauma, as well as some form of abuse, neglect, and marginalization. New research reminds us of the long-term effects of this kind of adversity on the healthy development of…

  • Faith,  Guatemala,  Justice

    6 Challenges in La Limonada

    Our friends in La Limonada face many challenges each and every day. Some may be clearly visible, but others are less obvious at first glance. Here are six challenges faced by children and families in the community, along with six ways child sponsorship is sowing seeds of hope. Challenge #1: Children in La Limonada attend overcrowded and underfunded public schools for only half a day. According to USAID, only three in ten children in Guatemala graduate from sixth grade. What Sponsorship Does: Sponsorship ushers the children into academies with teachers who love them, who will embody the love of Jesus, help with their homework, supplement what they are not learning…

  • Extensions,  Guatemala,  Justice

    5 Things You Didn’t Realize Your Child Sponsorship Was Doing

    When you invest in the Lemonade academy-based child sponsorship program, you impact all aspects of a child’s life in La Limonada – spiritual, physical, emotional, and intellectual. Here are five things you may not have realized about your child sponsorship: Child sponsorship gives a child in La Limonada the opportunity to have many positive role models who are deeply invested in their lives. Each classroom has an average of 15 students per teacher. In addition to this powerful relationship, they build relationships with the school principal and psychologist. Many of the children are receiving 45-minute therapy sessions where they are given the opportunity to process and heal. Older students are…

  • Guatemala,  Justice,  Uncategorized

    Safe From the Contamination of Violence

    When Tita first walked down the narrow paths into La Limonada, she was working with youth who had fallen deep into gang culture. Many were drug addicts and thieves. She looked past the menacing guns, tough faces, and feared reputations of the youth guarding the boundaries of their barrios, and sought to uncover the stories behind the pain-filled eyes. She learned their names, stories, and always asked how she could pray for them. It was impossible not to love each of them. When others saw cold-hearted criminals, Tita saw – through God’s eyes and heart – vulnerable children who had once been full of life and potential. She noticed how…

  • Faith,  Justice

    What Can Heal the Deep Racial Wounds?

    Ours is not a story of bitterness – it is a story of love and the triumphs of the God of love. But it is a story carved out of the realities of violence and poverty, ending not in some sugarcoated sense of brotherly love but the deep conviction that only the power of Christ’s crucifixion on the cross and the glory of His resurrection can heal the deep racial wounds in both black and white people in America. Dr. John M Perkins, Let Justice Roll Down

  • Extensions,  Guatemala,  Justice

    Presence in La Limonada

    I just returned from 10 days in Guatemala, a time of connecting with staff, building relationships, visiting the community, gathering stories, and hosting a vision trip from our home church in Phoenix. It was a joy to return to the narrow streets again, and to reflect on the experience. There is a grand paradox when we step into the paths that weave down into the ravine of La Limonada. We pass people whose eyes convey stories of pain, violence, and lack of power. We feel the weight of their marginalization immediately, and are welcomed into homes where we learn more about each individual and family. These stories of sickness, loss,…