YOUR generous support provides for the physical, mental, and spiritual needs of orphan and vulnerable children. But what is the long-term impact of the support you provide? Does it have a lasting value to the children once they are older?
Jonathan’s story illustrates that yes, indeed, your support has a far-reaching, long-lasting impact.
Jonathan arrived at our Guatemala City receiving centre in December 1997. He was thin and frail and suffered from malnutrition. He was not quite 10 months old and weighed only 14 pounds.
In addition to being malnourished, medical tests revealed that he suffered from hypothyroidism which can cause physical and mental issues. Jonathan received treatment and nutritional care and found a place of refuge at the centre.
As Jonathan grew older, his teachers noticed that he had difficulty learning letters and numbers. He had challenges with his memory. Eventually, government entities got involved, and he was transferred by court order to a government program that had the capacity to care for children with special learning needs.
But what was the impact of the care that ICC family members like you helped to provide?
According to Anabela, director of the city centre, Jonathan continues to feel a special closeness to his ICC family at the city centre even years later. Anabela shares the following about Jonathan:
“Jonathan always had in his mind that the staff members and children at the city centre were his ‘family’. The children were taught to call the caregivers ‘tía’ (aunt in English).
“Jonathan remembers a very special tía, Shandari, who took an interest in him. This was Jonathan’s home for several years. This was his family!
“At 18 years of age, Jonathan contacted me and told me that he was starting to work at McDonald’s. This was part of the program that helps residents live independently. Jonathan remembered with great affection the people who took care of him, the activities such as birthdays, Christmas, games with the other children, and all those special moments he never forgot. And more surprising is that he remembered how to get to the receiving centre address. Without a doubt, Jonathan’s time with us was a very special experience in his life, because we were always in his mind.
“Jonathan has decided that he wants to celebrate his birthday with us here at the centre. He has done this two times already. For us, it is something very special. It is an indicator that he always carries us in his mind and heart.
“Without a doubt, the work that is done with each child who passes through our care is very special since each tía, teacher, and parent gives their heart to each child in such a way that they feel loved and important. This awakens in each of them the desire to live and to move forward with a life of purpose. They have a longing to be good citizens and be productive in this society.”
‘Thank you very much, dear donor, for sharing your blessings with the neediest. This gives meaning to their lives. Be assured that the work done in the life of each child will bear fruit when they are independent and carry in their hearts the seed of the love of Jesus.
‘Thank you very much for your support! May God bless you.’