Making an Impact in Guatemala

 
In 2019 Vineyard Gilbert was one of many churches that opened its doors to migrant families that had been granted temporary asylum in the U.S. Magdalena Schwartz led the ministry in the East Valley that coordinated churches in this effort. In the process of this, Magdalena’s heart was stirred with the question, “Why?” Why were people fleeing? One of the places that migrant families were coming from was Guatemala. Magdalena found a way to visit churches and communities in Guatemala to see the need and conditions of families there. After seeing the  need, she also asked the question, “How can we help?” How can we help families so that they don’t feel compelled to make such a dangerous journey? That’s where this idea of the Guatemala Project came from. In partnering with churches in Guatemala to provide these kits, it enables those churches to be the hands and feet of Jesus to their communities in a practical way. And we get to be a part of it!
 

A Meal

 
Living in the United States, we often don’t think about how much access to nutritious food we have. In many places of the world, such as in Guatemala, communities of poverty lack the resource of nutritious food, and the lack of nutritious food can lead to undernourishment, and even malnutrition, which can often lead to serious illness. A meal is not a convenience – it is a necessity.

A Pair of Shoes

 
Each kit comes with a pair of shoes. This is good for two reasons: not only do kids get a pair of shoes for school (and life), but the shoes are purchased from a local shoe business and helps to boost the local economy.

A Backpack

 
A backpack with school supplies may not feel like a big deal, but it is! Why? In many places in the world, school is not a requirement, and you are not allowed to attend school if you do not have school supplies. For many living in impoverished situations, given the choice of having to purchase school supplies for their child or using that money to help their family eat, it can result in children notattending school. In school however, they also have a chance to have a meal, so not only does a backpack with school supplies enable them to go to school, but it also helps to guarantee a meal a day (which for some may be the only meal they get). So, not only does a backpack contribute to a hopeful future due to education, but it also helps to provide daily sustenance. 

Shoe Polishing Kit Box

 
For young adults ages 18-21, the $35 will provide them with a pair of shoes as well as a shoe polishing kit with a polishing cloth, polish, and buffer. This will give them a means of earning money to help support themselves and family.