We know that you’re praying and so wanted to send an update on how things are progressing with Jaco.
Since we last wrote, we prayed and decided to focus part of the 6 month internship of the children at risk school on the children of the town of Jaco. The first 3 months will be in Colombia, working with a ministry for street kids, and the second 3 months will be in Jaco.
Now we’ll share a little bit more specifically about what’s been going on and a little more background. Two weeks ago the Children at Risk school participated in a conference with Rahab Foundation focused on trafficking and prostitution. During this conference Scott and our team met many people doing amazing work in this field, and more specifically a lady, Nancy, that lives and works in Jaco. She asked us to come down and meet some people that she knows.
We took a trip last weekend with some of our students and staff and met up with Nancy at the Christian Surfers property. We had a meeting with Coky, the director, and his wife. Coky has a real passion for Jaco and he has lived and worked for 7 years with Christian Surfers here. As Coky was sharing, we realized that he and his wife are the only staff right now working with Christian Surfers and Coky has also newly co-founded a church in Jaco. Needless to say, they are very busy and overworked. His desire is to use the Christian Surfers property as a place for children to come. God spoke to his heart that this is the only safe place for kids in the city. He shared very passionately about his dreams and desires for the property, which is centrally located in Jaco, next to a playground that the mayor collaborated on building with him. But, with lack of staff, this hasn’t been able to happen in recent years.
We talked with them about the possibility of having the children at risk school team work for three months starting in July. They were definitely open to the possibility, but shared the real need of long term workers to be with these kids. They shared some of the abuse and struggles that these kids face daily, and they need people who they can trust who will invest in their lives long term. They also shared that the need is immediate, and they would like us to come sooner than July.
We left this trip with a lot to think about, and our hearts truly touched. Because of the immediate need and the hearts of some of the students and staff, we decided to continue with the Colombia outreach, but also send a small team to Jaco to start in May.
If you’ve taken the time to read all this you will see that it’s a lot to pray about and decide about. We’re excited about the outreach focusing on Jaco, but the needs are long term, well beyond 3 to 6 months.
As for our family, Scott will be leading the July DTS here in San Jose. After that we have a lot of decisions to make. Moving our family to Jaco would be a huge move. We need to know if this is the right step and when the right timing would be for a smooth transition.
Also, we know that the Children at Risk school is a key piece to the ministry. We would love it if everyone who works with us could take this school to get training and perspective and understanding for working with children at risk. So we know that continuing the training is very important. All of this almost feels like a puzzle we need to piece together with the right pieces and the right timing.
Here are some Prayer Points:
Pray for the outreach team in Jaco starting in May and continuing through September.
Pray for the Christian Surfers Ministry, that we will be able to have a partnership and work well with this organization.
Pray for the children and families in Jaco, for protection and the Holy Spirit to be paving the way for transformation in their hearts and lives.
Pray for our family, to have clarity and peace in the decisions that we face.
Pray for our children to also hear from God and help in the decision making process. Pray for their transition, stability and peace.
Pray for the children at risk school, that we will be able to continue providing this training.
Scott, Leslie, Kai, Ezzy, Jude