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Esperanza para Guatemala sits in the middle of Zone 18 of Guatemala City. It’s a zone filled with 900,000 people and infamous for its gun violence and its poverty.
If the people already lived in fear, that fear was compounded earlier this summer when several earthquakes hit the city. Poorly built houses shaking due to multiple earthquakes increases the fear. Jose Armas, the leader of Esperanza, emailed us immediately to share that people were ok but scared.
A week later a second email comes from Jose. This time it’s different. As many children are eating breakfast in the Esperanza daily breakfast program, a desperate, hurting mother calls to tell Jose she is leaving town seeking a better life in the US – and her 5 children that Esperanza are presently feeding – she’s leaving them and asking Esperanza to look after them!
Already these children have seen their father desert them. Now they are left completely alone.
It’s what poverty does.
It drives people to the edge.
It forces people to make impossible choices.
Jose and the Esperanza Team stepped up. They trace down the grandmother who is already caring for 7 children and with the help of a local pastor and with Esperanza’s commitment, there is now a family of 12 children plus an aged grandmother being held and helped together with Esperanza’s commitment to children and families.
It’s a day in the life of families and children who live in extreme poverty. Chaos. Pain.
It’s a day in the life of Esperanza para Guatemala. Chaos, Pain. Being Jesus.
Beauty in Zona 18.