Backpacks!

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We had a fun time last week visiting Club Cristiana La Esperanza with some high school students from Westminster Christian School in Miami, FL.  They were in Nicaragua to build a mercy home for a family in need with Open Hearts. You can check out the blog they updated during their trip here.   But in the middle of it all, we took some time to visit the Early Childhood Education Center at Club Esperanza.  And guess what….

…They brought backpacks!!!

Every one of our preschool and kindergarten students got a brand new backpack filled with all sorts of fun toys and school supplies and candy…and so of course the team made sure to include some dental hygiene supplies as well!

It was a fun morning and a great opportunity to bring a small blessing to a child in need.  The kids all loved getting their new backpacks!  We praise the Lord for these very special gifts at the start of this school year.

We also made sure to hang around for recess time.   Really, how on earth could anyone visit a school with so many cute little kids and not spend some time pushing them on a swing or being a human jungle gym! 🙂


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First day of school…

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Yesterday was an exciting day down in Villa de Guadalupe, it was the first day of class!  At Club Esperanza one of our biggest outreaches to the community is our Early Childhood Education Program.  We have 120 preschool and kindergarten students each year.  They not only get a quality accredited early education, but we have a feeding program that provides two meal a day, and a staff of teachers filled with the love of Jesus!  As this 2017 school year begins we are asking for Jesus’ biggest blessings on all of our students and their families too.  Yesterday was an exciting start to the school year!

This program provides an incredible resource to the families we serve.  As I mentioned above it is a quality education and we have a great feeding program.  These are so helpful to many of the families who are struggling in an economy with massive unemployment and extremely low wages.  The community where we serve has many many obstacles that would keep a child from growing up well; violence, poverty, abuse, neglect, etc…often circumstances that are unimaginable.  So, we parter with as many families as we can to help the children at the youngest ages.  Our hope is to impact Nicaragua for generations to come.  As you can see in the pictures above, our classrooms are packed.  So, please pray for our teachers throughout the year.  They have a lot of work with lots of beautiful crazy little children.  We are very happy to report, that the first day went great!

These pictures of parent pick up time captured a pretty exciting time of the day.  I laughed because when Krista and I visited our friends in NYC this past Thanksgiving we got to see this same exact experience first hand.  We walked a few blocks in Queens and arrived at a school with dozens of parents waiting on the street.  The kids came out, each running to their parent, and off they went.  It was funny to see this exact same experience play itself out down here in Managua, Nicaragua.  I was also encouraged with the perspective as well, knowing the controlled chaos of the time appears to be an international norm LOL!

Our dining hall was also packed on the first day of school.  We absolutely love the way that the Lord has provided for us so that we can feed so many kids each day.  In fact, we feed nearly 300 children and teenagers with all of the different programs that happen at Club Esperanza.  Our kitchen staff prepares good healthy meals that help keep our kids nourished and healthy.  We ensure to have big chunks of protein and vegetables in each meal.  Today’s menu was “Arroz con Pollo”.  Another request for prayer would be for our cook and kitchen staff.  Lots of meals to serve every day and they need the Lord’s strength!

We had to finish this blog post off with pictures of the beautiful little faces of the children we serve.  Our biggest prayer request is this, that during the school year the Lord would protect each one and help them to grow stronger, wiser and healthier while they are in our care!  We look forward to a great year.

If you would like to donate to Club Esperanza you can do so here.  If your church or Parachurch organization would like to partner with us in Nicaragua please feel free to email us at losfarringtons@gmail.com 

 
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Back to school shopping!

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We have a group of high school students at Club Esperanza that we select every year to be a part of our High School Scholarship program.  It is a solid group of kids who come from various different family backgrounds.  Some of them have parents who are working hard and this group provides an assistance to them to better their child’s future.  Some of them come from homes with parents that really couldn’t care less about their future.  For these, their involvement in this group is entirely an individual effort to try and break out of the cycle of poverty by getting their High School degree..

We love this aspect of ministry at Club Esperanza and look forward to working with these students.  Something you can be in prayer about for them, is the formation of a youth group at Club Esperanza.  A weekly meeting where they would be the leaders of the group, but it would be open to all of their friends in the neighborhood.  We are laying the groundwork now and hopefully will launch this youth group in the coming months.

This blog post however is highlighting a fun day we had this week.  School starts next Monday, so it was time for back to school shopping.  We shopped for uniforms, shoes, backpacks and school supplies and just had a good time hanging out together for the day.

We look forward to a great school year!

We would like to say a special thank you to Love Light & Melody for their support of our High School Scholarship program this year!

If you would like to donate to support the children at Club Esperanza we would be very thankful…we need your help to impact these young lives!


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How you can help in 2017…Early childhood education

As 2017 kicks off we want to share some of the construction projects that we would like to accomplish this year.  In this series of blog posts we will share some specific projects with their specific costs…we hope you can help if you feel led!

Our early childhood education program provides an enormous blessing to the local community.  We do not charge for enrollment, but we expect parents to be involved and have a teaching staff that is top notch.  For families to have a place to bring their children everyday that is safe and of good quality lifts a big burden.  It is a joy to work with these little ones!

   You can see in the first photograph that one of our preschool classes meet inside the dining hall.  We need to place a retractable divider here.  Cost $1,110.

   We have two bathrooms that serve everyone and they are really beaten down from all of the use.  To remodel the bathrooms will cost $3,700.

   We have had the same wear on our classrooms.  One of the big needs, is to replace the doors with official classroom doors.  All three will cost $380.

   One of our classrooms also has a serious ventilation problem.  What we would like to do, is place a window on an interior wall for air flow.  Cost $350.

   Lastly our office is the central hub of the entire ministry.  We have parent meetings, accounting meetings, staff meetings, etc in this office and it is not big enough.  We plan to demolish an interior wall and expand the office space into an adjacent closet.  This will help with our growing needs.  Cost is $5,500.

DONATION INFORMATION HERE

How you can help in 2017…Feeding Program

As 2017 kicks off we want to share some of the construction projects that we would like to accomplish this year.  In this series of blog posts we will share some specific projects with their specific costs…we hope you can help if you feel led!

At Club Esperanza we feed over 300 people two times every day.  Our kitchen is something we are very proud of because we make a big effort to not only feed every child, but feed them well!  It is a hub of lots of activity!

   As you can see in the picture below, our kitchen has an open front that faces the main gathering area.  Because we also want to keep the kitchen very sanitary, it is important that we close the kitchen in on the front end.  We also need to add wooden cabinets for keeping order.  Cost to do both is $4,750.

   In the pictures to the side you can see some of the more particular needs that we have in the kitchen.  First our wash basin is the one that we have had since we were in La Chureca.  It has had a good life…a new one will cost $350.

   The next item that we have had since we were in La Chureca is the stove.  It too has had a great life and has helped to serve thousands of meals over the last decade.  A new one with two burners and a grill will cost $825.

   Lastly you see our outside kitchen where we cook beans and tortillas over firewood.  This stove puts out tons of smoke.  We don’t have a hood in the roof for smoke to escape…this costs $450.

DONATION INFORMATION HERE

How you can help in 2017…Tutoring Program

As 2017 kicks off we want to share some of the construction projects that we would like to accomplish this year.  In this series of blog posts we will share some specific projects with their specific costs…we hope you can help if you feel led!

The tutoring program is for our 1st – 6th grade students and is a huge ministry as we serve over 150 students every afternoon.  We only have three actual classrooms so some of our groups meet outside under temporary tents to have lunch, do their homework, and spend time with their tutor.

   We would like to build two permanent shelters similar to the one at Quinta Havilah (pictured to the left).  It would be perfect for the teaching time and give a great cover from all the elements.  The style is very pretty and the clay tile roof will keep it very cool.  The cost to build these “Ranchitos de Teja” would be $8,350 each.

DONATION INFORMATION HERE

Extra Time: Meeting Special Needs…

We want to take a few blog posts and share about our amazing staff at Club Esperanza and some of the Extra programs that they put together in their own free time.  “Extra Time”… going far above and beyond to affect the lives of our children and families at the Club.

img_5174  Henriet is one of our teachers at Club Esperanza.  She teaches kindergarten and also tutors a group of 25 third graders in the afternoon.  She has known some of the children at Club Esperanza their entire lives because she taught at Colegio Esperanza inside La Chureca for ten years until we moved to Club Esperanza when the dump was closed.

Henriet has a son Jesus who is a University student.  Jesus is almost completely deaf and raising him taught Henriet many different lessons about having a child with special needs.  It has also given her a personal burden for parents who have children with different disabilities.  Over these last three years at the Club, she realized there are a number of families with children that have varying needs and disabilities that can be challenging. Because of that personal burden, this year she is doing something to help.

On the anniversary celebration of the official sign language, Henriet and her son put together a Seminar at Club Esperanza specifically for these families.  Henriet invited the families to come for a meal, the Ministry of Education came and gave presentations and resources for the parents, they ministered to and prayed for the families, our students performed special dances, and even had specific gifts for each child.  It was pretty incredible, a real tribute to the heart that Jesus has given us at the Club to reach everyone, especially those who are often considered “the least of these.”  Oh, but there was so much joy in that assembly.  As anyone who has a child with special need knows, each one is far from the least!  We celebrate their lives!  It was special for Henriet in another way as well, her son Jesus was there beside her translating the teachings into sign language for those who came with hearing impairment.  That was pretty awesome!

Please pray for this new program at Club Esperanza.  Of the families that came, we have children with Downs Syndrome, paralyzed children, autistic children, and severely disabled children.  The first step we are taking on a permanent basis is to incorporate them into our feeding program every day.  Then as far as the future goes, I know Henriet is praying about what the next steps may be to continually support these families.  One thing is for sure, this was a beautiful beginning!