Here are some of their thoughts as they were leaving . . .
"This community is SO EXCITED about their school – there is always someone there working on something. One of the main desires parents have for their children is for them to get an education and succeed so they can get out of poverty."
"I am sad to be leaving you (Rinconada del Sol) today and I feel like I am leaving a part of my heart here with you. But I am taking back a new piece of my heart that is filled with you and I am excited to share you and your lives with my friends, family and community back in Vancouver so that they can become a part of your lives and that our two communities can grow closer together even though we are so far apart physically."
"The above picture is of my friend Patty during the farewell dances as we prepared to leave. She is dressed in her tradition Quechuan dress. The Quechuan people are from the mountains and are descendents of the Inca people. Patty was one of the community mothers, which means she is very involved in the community helping organize the child sponsors, she is at the new school working every Sunday afternoon with the other women, she helps with the family violence programs and the nutrition programs as well as the kids clubs.
On another note, we learned while we were there that in these types of communities that 70% of the women report family violence – physical, emotional or sexual. Because so many of the mothers are single there is a larger ratio of women to men and not enough good male role models in the communities. The other picture is of Brent and Peter during our rock moving construction day. We were working with La Roca which is a church that has come into this community and is working together with Food for the Hungry. They have just purchased this land to build a church. Clearing land and building here is very difficult because all the rocks needs to be cleared (by hand) and the ground needs to be leveled and retaining walls (made with the rocks) need to be built. It is back breaking work and takes many many hours. We moved all the rocks from up high on the site down to where they were building the lower retaining wall. It was a great time of partnering with them and we pray for them as they continue."