Caring for God’s Children in Bolivia
As we ponder what it means to “come together in faith” and “move forward in love” we invite you to consider one community that offers a shining example, even during a global pandemic.
Villa Amistad orphanage in Cochabamba, Bolivia has managed, by the grace of God and our prayers and continued support, to not only survive, but thrive, growing closer to one another and to God. Children who have previously experienced abuse or abandonment enter the Christian community of Villa Amistad, where they are welcomed into the family of one of seven “casas” each housing 7-10 children cared for by a Mamá and Tía. Villa Amistad is also uniquely equipped to reunite siblings who may otherwise have been placed in separate facilities. Currently they host 26 sibling groups ranging in age from 2 – 27, in their lifetime system of care.
During the Covid outbreak, the children at Amistad Mission were fortunate to have access to remote learning, while schools in Cochabamba were closed to in-person classes. Last year, all classes were virtual, and Amistad Mission hired private tutors to work with the children. The children at Villa Amistad receive educational support and guidance into young adulthood, with higher education being part of each child’s life plan.
The communal garden has proven to be a joyful activity. Each day, the children work together to grow and harvest organic produce, and they enjoy the fruits of their labor during family meals. Many of the children have enjoyed learning to bake bread, which also graces their dinner tables.
We share prayers of thanksgiving for the Amistad staff, and the Mamás and Tías who continue to work to give the children a happy home life. Birthdays, holidays and religious holy days are celebrated with renewed enthusiasm, and the joy is shared with us remotely through their presence on social media, and an outpouring of cards and letters from the children.
The children miss visits from their friends in America. We hope to be able to resume international mission trips soon, but until that time, please consider being a prayer friend for a child, and follow the adventures of our family at Casa San Francisco on Amistad’s social media channels.