A leap of faith


Spreading the seeds of Christ for the Poor

By Alejandro Torres

Everyone said I was crazy. The world was experiencing a huge financial crisis, I lacked experience, and yet I wanted to start a non-profit corporation to work with the poor. Everyone said it wasn’t the right time to do this, etc., etc... Admittedly, these were all very good arguments, only I would respond, and still do, “The right time is when your heart speaks and guides you.” 

The idea of funding an organization that would work with the poor in education and human development came from a small and diverse group of people who believed that together we could make a huge difference in the world surrounding us. Christ for the Poor, an international health and poverty relief foundation, was established in Puerto Rico and later developed a second and primary base in Managua, Nicaragua in the area of La Chureca—Managua´s largest garbage dumpsite.

It has not been easy. There has been resistance and opposition. Only a few people believed in this idea and many of those who began with us have abandoned the project. But I knew it was God’s plan and I knew that God would make it happen. Christ for the Poor faced financial obstacles, lack of support, and a number of other difficulties, but three years later, we are legally incorporated in Nicaragua, Puerto Rico, and the United States.

The needs are many, all of them are urgent. Through the project, we currently provide community prevention workshops on HIV, substance abuse and domestic violence. We have developed an HIV vitamins supply program through La Mascota Hospital in Nicaragua, where we help strengthen HIV positive children who otherwise would not have any access to this kind of treatment. We created the Vocational Institute of the Americas, which provides vocational skills training in basic and advanced electronics, mobile phone repair, arts and crafts, cosmetology and other fields. There are also language courses, mainly for missionaries, who are always welcome to stay in our bed and breakfast, which is also the center for our Tourism and Hospitality School.

We are currently developing educational-cultural missionary trips to the countries where we serve and are becoming stronger as we commit to spreading the seeds of Christ for the Poor. Among our immediate goals are to spread our work to Panama, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Bolivia and Colombia. Although we face many difficulties and the financial situation remains a challenge, our faith and hope continues strong. Our greatest reward is to bring Christ to places where people feel neglected. Having a group of extraordinary people in this adventure of faith and renewal is a gift from God.

I never thought I would be able to do this, but God has allowed me turn my dream into a ministry that has become one of my most rewarding experiences of God’s love.

www.christforthepoor.org.

Where is your heart leading you? What obstacles would you foresee? Do those obstacles stop you?
 

 

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