Impact Bolivia

July-December 2016

Lauren+ Date Archive, Impact Bolivia, July-December 2016

Overview

La Jornada (“The Journey”) is a shared home for former street kids who have left the streets for various children’s homes, graduated from high school and are committed to continuing their education by taking up a skilled trade or gaining a professional qualification. Through scholarships, room and board, and mentoring, we work to break the cycle of poverty by intervening at a critical point in their lives.

Street kids in Bolivia grow up believing they are disposable, invisible, insignificant, and unloved. Many have ended up on the street as a result of addiction or abuse. Many enter children’s homes but after being released from the system at age 18, they can become trapped in the same cycle of poverty as their parents, unable to support themselves beyond their basic needs. Some end up back on the streets and most live hand-to-mouth, working long hours for low wages, usually subject to exploitation and job insecurity.

The money raised by Impact Bolivia goes toward providing food and housing for the young men living at La Jornada, as well as covering all tuition and transportation costs while they are enrolled in full-time post-secondary education.

Detailed Implementation Plan

La Jornada continues to provide a loving home to 10 young men. In this home these young men receive scholarships, medical assistance, and mentorship that helps meet their potential. They all come from a local children’s home called Mision Timoteo, with whom La Jornada partners.

Two of the boys are still working to finish high school and one young man named Sandro has recently graduated high school. Sandro will start his next degree in Civil Engineering in February. There are many other subjects being studied in La Jornada, including international relations, business, computers, physiotherapy, and psychology. The post-secondary scholarships are continuing to provide these young men with opportunities to secure good jobs in the future.

The young men are continuing to transition well into La Jornada and the staff is diligently working with them so that they are equipped to meet the various commitments and requirements in school. The work goes beyond just helping with completing school though; through mentorship and spiritual guidance the young men at La Jornada are experiencing what God’s love looks like.

Christmas is a special time for us in the La Jornada family. We enjoyed decorating the home, eating together and sharing many stories and laughs. It is good to be able to celebrate Christ’s birth in the home and it is important to cherish the holidays together.

We were able to continue our stay in our current home and have extended the lease for another year. Being able to live in this place is a blessing and this location will continue to be a place where transformation occurs in the lives of 10 young men for the foreseeable future.

Even though we have been able to continue our stay in this home our long-term vision is set on owning our own place. This new house for ministry will be able to house 15 young men and will enable us to continue to disciple and enable them to continue their education. Along with the house, the property will have a soccer field to be used by us and by the larger community. In Bolivia soccer is very popular and the other fields in Santa Cruz are fully utilized. Having our own soccer field will provide income, community interactions, and opportunities for events to be held at La Jornada.

Stories of Transformation

Sandro is one of the newest members of the La Jornada family and we were overjoyed when we got to celebrate his Grade 12 graduation! Looking back on what Sandro has had to overcome to get to this point shows how much God has been working in his life. When Sandro was only two months old, he was dropped off by a family member at a children’s home and no one at the home remembers who left him there. Sandro has no idea who any of his family members are. However, through his connection with the La Jornada home, he now has a new family who cheered louder than any other family when he received that diploma!

It’s always great to celebrate together, especially when we can come together because of achievements such as this. The past year of studies were not always easy for Sandro and there were times when he needed some encouragement to see it through.

It’s amazing what God can do in a person’s life. Sandro came from a humble beginning, one where he never had a family, but now is in a loving home. He used to be shy, timid, and never trusted anyone. Today we see a different person, we see a young man who is full of confidence, is godly, funny and compassionate. Sandro is about to start his studies to become a Civil Engineer and we are excited for the plans and purposes that God has for this young man.

Partnership Community

Impact Bolivia has been thankful for all the support that it has received over the past year. Those living in the La Jornada home have felt really blessed by all the contributions that have helped them achieve their potential.

Ken is thankful that his parents were able to come and visit over Christmas this past year. It was a wonderful time of bonding for all in the house and we are sure that the young men at La Jornada enjoyed their presence as well.

As we look forward to the next year we are excited about several opportunities, one of which is a Ministry Training Camp that we need to raise money for as several of the La Jornada family would love to go and deepen their knowledge of God.

Financial Information

Total Income 2016 $85,404
Total Expenses 2016 $106,985
Overall 2016 Budget $112,450