Children’s HopeChest comes alongside local leaders in Guatemala to create CarePoints that are safe places with holistic programs for the children and their communities. We work with communities to help them break the bondages of poverty and receive healing and health in their relationships. At the CarePoints, we incorporate all aspects of wellbeing, including children’s physical, emotional, educational, and spiritual needs. We believe that holistic transformation in the world’s poorest communities occurs when one community partners with another
Children’s HopeChest Guatemala launched a new model of CarePoint, whereby HopeChest Guatemala will assume direct responsibility for the new CarePoint. The first such CarePoint started in Pueblo Modelo, near Zacapa. From the name of the village, we have chosen to create a “Model Village” (Spanish: Pueblo Modelo) identity that will be branded, adopted, and replicated in other locations around the nation.
These Pueblo Modelos will be under the direct leadership and supervision of HopeChest Guatemala, which will be responsible to create their own development plans and to implement and facilitate the operations and activities of the CarePoint as it works in conjunction with the surrounding community to bring transformation.
One of the biggest impacts of this model in the community is that we are building community within the community. People now are getting to know each other better. They are beginning to take ownership of the program and they now understand that we are interested in the same things they are, “the children.” The other great impact we are having, is that we have different people working together. We have the public school, the local church, the COCODE (Local Community leadership), Servants Heart (local ministry), the parents, and HopeChest Guatemala.
We are giving hope and opportunities to the people at Pueblo Modelo, through the economic empowerment initiatives. We have begun a local business that we use to buy supplies from people of the community for the nutritional program. We are also training 16 women in sewing to begin a co-op so that they can get an extra income without leaving their children alone.
The most important component in this initiative is the local leadership. They are the ones doing the job 24/7. They are the ones who gained the trust of the community. That is why part of this initiative is to invest time in local leadership. We plan to invest time in training local leadership to continue with the CarePoint once they become self-sustainable. On the other hand, we need to invest time in their lives so that they can continue doing what they have been called to do.
Today’s blog is written by Sam Montero, Guatemala’s Program Officer who is overseeing the strategy of directly implemented CarePoints in Guatemala. For the next two months Sam will share the stories of Guatemala local leaders (next month we’ll hear Sam’s story) who are shaping the Pueblo Modelo initiative. Join us as we launch this exciting model in Guatemala and lift up the stories of its leaders!