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2018 Girls Club Camp
25 November 2018

2018 Girls Club Camp

Our First Girls Club Camp is IN THE BOOKS!!!

We are rejoicing and full of gratitude as we reflect on the goodness of God today!  Last weekend, we saw almost 60 girls come and take part in our first Bhitri Sundarta (inner beauty) girls club CAMP!   We had been dreaming about this camp since the inception of our girls club program in the spring of 2016.

 

When we began to plan the camp in earnest this July/August, Hope for Families had already been grappling with a dip in our funding, and we were asking God…”should we continue forward with our camp?”  We felt strongly that God was asking us to take a big leap of faith, and that is what we did.  With not ONE CENT available for our camp, we announced the date and started signing up the girls in our clubs.  The excitement was building as we began to talk with the clubs about the plans for the camp.  We challenged our leaders to pray, believing that God would provide.  We saw God open the windows of heaven and pour out everything we needed for our camp!

Churches and individuals have come alongside us, giving above and beyond.  Not only that, but God put it into the heart of a generous supporter to provide bibles for ALL of the girls in our camp, plus we had enough to give bibles to the leaders as well.  Everyone was so very grateful.

Daniela, one of our club leaders and a resident of Hope House, pulled me aside after we got home from the camp and said, “Mama Kathy, did you know that this bible is my first bible?  I have never been able to have one before.”  She hugged me tightly, with tears in her eyes and said, “Thank you!”  We saw the little girls from the camp holding those bibles close to their hearts, reading them, and cherishing them.  

Knowing the stories of each of these girls, our hearts were overflowing with joy to be able to provide a time that, perhaps for each of them, was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.   Cristina Alvarado, who is a pastor and also a dear friend of mine came to share with our girls.  Their lives were marked by her story and her powerful encouragement.  In our camp were girls who have experienced trauma, abuse and deprivation.  

One such girl was Norma.  Just weeks before coming to the camp she witnessed her beloved father gunned down by gang-members.  He was trying to defend and protect his little brother, and was killed in the process.  Norma is 8 years old.  She saw the whole thing, along with her mother and her little sister, Reina, who is 4 years old.  This is becoming all to commonplace in El Salvador.  Our hearts were broken by this little one.  She appeared in shock most of the time, but our leaders were able to speak love into her devasted little heart.  She opened up and cried at times.  At times, she even played, jumping rope, making crafts, partaking in games, and making bubbles.  

 

At our campfire, Cristina shared her story of rejection and abuse and her journey of forgiveness.  She challenged the girls to come to the campfire and throw a leaf into the fire to signify a desire to forgive those who have hurt them, so they could be released from the grip of bitterness, hate and anger.  Many girls, with tears in their eyes, stepped forward and threw a leaf into the fire as Cristina prayed for them.  It was a very powerful moment for these girls who have experienced so much hurt in their short lives. 

We were also blessed to have Barb Friesen, a dear friend, and her daughter, Katie, come for our camp with a wonderful craft for our girls to do.  Our theme for the camp was the idea that we have all been created as a masterpiece, designed exactly the way God, our Creator, had in mind for us.  He lovingly chose every detail to make us for His glory.

Barb brought some beautiful stenciled backpacks for the girls to create and design exactly the way they wanted them.  Before beginning to make the bags,  she took the time to explain and reinforce the truth that each of them was uniquely created by a God who loves them.  The girls listened carefully as she told them that just as they were going to chose the pattern, color and details of the backpack, God had chosen every single detail about them, and then said, “It is GOOD!”

Barb also brought gospel necklaces for the girls to make, along with a little folding gospel tract that easily and creatively presents our need for a Savior.  My absolute favorite part of the whole weekend was watching the girls sitting at the tables with their leaders (Hope House gals!) putting together their gospel bead necklaces. The leaders, every one of them, took those tracts and with all their heart and passion, shared the gospel with all their girls.  Tears ran down my face as I watched my chicas, who have been poured into in our home, now, pouring Jesus into the lives of these, their little ‘sisters’. 

Click on the picture to watch a video of the Hope House ladies sharing the gospel with their little sisters!

Words are not adequate to explain how I felt.  It was as though God was whispering to me…..”Look, Kathy!  It is happening!”  I saw the vision for reaching girls and women in El Salvador come alive and dance before me!  Oh, give thanks to the Lord for HE IS GOOD!  It is worth it.  It is all worth it.

 

Thank you to all those who prayed over our camp and those who financially supported in order to make this camp a reality.  Hope for Families is in need of funding to see our girls club program grow, as well as support for women living in Hope House.  If you would like to be a part of what God is doing in and through HFF in El Salvador, click http://hopeforfams.org

 

 
 
 

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Our mailing address is:

Hope For Families

PO Box 65606

Vancouver, WA 98665-0021

 

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