Meet Ruth Cabello, she is 8 years old and an active member of Pablo Johansson’s church and attends Sunday school too.
Ruth attends church with her mother 3-5 times a week. Ruth often dances and sings in the church, and thinks it's great fun and an honor. “It's nice in the church and such a great atmosphere”, says Ruth. “We will be here Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Sundays”.
Ruth is in the children’s group and thinks it's fun and educational. “It's fun to come here every Sunday, says Ruth. We learn much about the Bible, we praise God, do crafts with a pencil and then dance and sing, all is fun. Then we have coffee and we get candy before we go home.”
Ruth has just finished third grade in school and her favorite subject is math.
Meet Luciano Cabrera, he is 16 years old and been an active member of Pablo Johansson’s church since the spring of 2016, when Pablo had an outdoor Gospel campaign that made an impression on Luciano’s heart.
“Pablo talked about the Gospel and it felt good, says Luciano. He gave in his message a clear and good message. I'm going to church regularly, preferably several times a week.” In December 2016, Luciano confirmed his faith by baptism “I'm saved, and the baptism was a nice confirmation, so it just feels good” says Luciano.
Luciano is in the third grade in high school and wants to become border police when he becomes an adult.
Text and Photos are thanks to our very own Dennis Thern in Argentina, December 2016.
We want to continue our journey. It doesn’t end at 18!
The Day Center "Dorohoi" accommodates over 25 children and young people with disabilities from the local town but also from nearby villages. In the last few years, poeple started to come even from 50 miles away, all because they do not have access to other centers or other social service resources for children and persons with disabilities. Dorohoi is one of the poorest areas of north-east Romania, where people can hardly find a place to work.
Through the window, you can see two faces of two young people with Down Syndrome: Liviu and Andrea. Their eyes blurred with sleep but smiling and happy faces because of today, they feel valued and they have a goal, that is to go to the Day Care center "Star of Hope Dorohoi."
If other people to go to work in the morning, others to do shopping or other young people to meet their partners, Liviu and Andrea, accompanied by their mothers, go to the center to meet with their friends, special people like them. They already know the route, the trip from home to the center is over 30 miles on way yet they started visiting the center weekly for the last past 14 years.
They started this journey when they were little kids and were diagnosed with Down Syndrome, then no one wanted them. The communities they come from didn’t want to make an effort to integrate them so the only option was the Star of Hope center.
When they started to come to Day Care Center they were unable to do anything. Step by step they learned to hold a pen, then to draw and later even to write letters and numbers. It was a hard work for them but also for the specialists. They, together with other children with disabilities, learned to play, to sing, dance and draw, to communicate, to relate to each other, to make friends and to find happiness. For many young people with disabilities is often difficult and hard to understand the world around them. One example is Vlad, a boy with Down syndrome, who at first when he came to our center was crawling on the floor, barking and biting other kids, today he is a young man of 20 years who won a sports medal, here alongside his friends from the club.
The children with disabilities were trained in Star of Hope Centre, were educated and they were no longer a threat to the community. Step by step we began to work with the mentality of our communities. At the beginning, people were looking strange at our children but gradually the intervention has gained their confidence. Many children and teens from different school now come and volunteer at the center.
These children, as Liviu, Andrea, and Vlad, began in our center as children. Now they are young people. Because we didn’t want to abandon them as others, we developed a special club called “ Young’s Club”. This is the perfect place for them to develop a lot of activities. Here they use to develop the computer skills, painting, and handmade skills. Also in the center are organized activities where town students come and volunteer, helping our teenagers, doing educational and sports activities together. These wonderful things happened because we had the courage to go out, in the middle of the community (town or village) and show that all are part of the same world.
"It is stunning to see how it can change a child's character and behavior, actually an entire life. You have no greater joy as when you look in the eyes of the child who most often than cannot say in words thank you, but you understand it with the heart."
Text Camelia Topală - Coordinator of the center in Dorohoi Romania.
Learn more here: https://www.starofhope.us/romania-moldova
Sponsor the work here: https://www.starofhope.us/get-involved/quick-give-form
All Christmas gifts on our shop are developed with a "Pay It Forward" concept. This is a gift that keeps giving and changes dramatically the life of a child in need. We strive to give you a report on how your gift was used soon after Christmas.
Please visit the shop and know we will do our best to send digital thank you cards to those you choose.
In Argentina, Star of Hope has been hit by a national problem and it is called "squatting". Many landowners in Argentina have fallen prey to squatters. There are individuals and families but even professional squatters in action, the idea is very simple people want to get the landowners land for free; for themselves or even as a contract job for a third party.
The squatters, it is reported, are usually immigrants and are fleeing from slums. They're moving on to empty fields, soccer fields, federal land or any place that can get them away from crime-ridden slums. What a thought, to be so poor you and your family live in a slum and have to move to a grass lot or other to escape poor on poor crime.
Land is larger lot.
The situation is at best a double whammy with emotional on both sides but land owners should be helped and private land should be just that.
Our work at this project is located in Sáenz Peñais, Argentina. We have through our partners, "El Buen pastor" helped thousands of women, men, and children. This help is based on Biblical teaching and actions and more.
We need help to build a wall to protect this land. It is not cheap. It is a large piece of land, the whole yard is about 100 yards by 400 yards and the squatters occupy north portion.
The price tag is $100,000 dollars to secure the land with a brick wall and continue Gods work, this land is in danger of being lost.
Pray that a big donor might step up and help out or perhaps many will help quickly with a gift,
Contact Star of Hope 866 653 0321 and please pray for El Buen Pastor and Star of Hope.
We are thrilled to bring you the Star of Hope Christmas Giving Guide. By participating in this “Pay it Forward” gift program, you can be a “STAR of Hope” and, give children and families a bright future. Together, with your help, we can impact lives in Romania, Haiti, Argentina, Trinidad, and other places around the world.
Click photo to go download the Christmas Catalog to print for your Church or group.
Star of Hope works with local people groups in 14 countries to identify the greatest needs.Your donations will purchase real gifts, from goats to books, and everything in between to fill those needs.
“I have seen with my own eyes the positive impact your generous giving has had on the families and communities we serve,” states Maria Presson. “I had the privilege to travel to Haiti this year. While there, I met many children and families who are blessed to be recipients of Star of Hope’s support, thanks to donors like you. It is a blessing that the education programs and the “pay it forward” program are helping, and will continue to give meaning, and change lives now, and in the future.”
When our Star of Hope teams deliver these life-changing gifts to children and families, we personally witness the hope and gratitude in their eyes. Together we can create real change in the lives of children, families, and communities through your generous contributions. Thank you for giving hope, prosperity and a future to so many in need.
Blessings and wishing you and yours a beautiful holiday season.
Maria Eriksson Presson
Help us distribute the 2016 2-part catalog to like-minded people, save or print from this link:
Print on letter duplex color or B&W
Print on legal duplex color or B&W
Fold and combine - or send to your printer!
Here is a mini 2 up Christmas bulletin insert for printing.
Print instructions mini:
Here is how, print in color or B&W, duplex flip on short edge should be used if you can, then each letter size sheet will have 2 mini catalogs.
The size is perfect for bulletin inserts at church too. No worries, If you have no duplex then just print as is and that works well too.
I think it is such a blessing to send a small gift to those who are in need this Christmas.
Need help or want printed copies, call us at 866 653 0321 ask for Maria Presson.
The online version is also open for all at www.starofhope.us/shop