Crossroads Comes to Town: Part 2
Good morning from Managua, Nicaragua!
Late on Saturday night, the second Crossroads team arrived at the Managua airport, ready to serve as their friends had done the week before. Similar to the previous group, the team is focused on assisting in a number of different areas. However, before the got to work, the team took part in the Sunday morning church service in El Canyon and then hosted a carnival for the kids from the community. The kids loved the carnival, which included a “Brinka Brinka” (bounce house), a payaso (clown), some hot dogs, popcorn and cotton candy, and, of course, a little soccer and volleyball. Returning to the house for dinner after an action packed day, the team prepared for the next phase of their journey.
On Monday morning, the team loaded into the vans and headed to Sebaco, a farming town north of Managua. The purpose of the team’s trip to Sebaco was to serve a training center created by one of our ministry partners, Just One Opportunity. While located in Sebaco, the training center’s primary focus is the remote villages located in the nearby hills and mountains, most of which do not have electricity and running water. The goal on this particular day was to provide a healthcare clinic for families from two of the villages as well as some of the people from the local Sebaco community. Upon arriving at the training center, the healthcare team set up their clinic while some of the other team members set up activities for many of the kids who had traveled in from the villages with their parents. Additionally, a few of the team members took measurements and purchased material for the construction of shelves meant for holding items donated to the training center. After all was set and done, the team had seen over 160 people at the clinic, built three shelving units, and entertained tons of kids with glitter, construction paper and games. In addition to serving the people from the villages, the team provided funds to purchase food for some of the families who had been hit particularly hard by the drought. Overall, a great day was had by all involved.
After recovering from a long day on Monday, the team headed to El Canyon on Tuesday morning. After taking a quick walking tour of the community, the team split up to complete their respective projects. Over our years of serving in Nicaragua, we have found that dental hygiene is a huge area of need. For this reason, a group from the team completed a short tooth brushing activity with the kids from the Martin Luther King school that included a giant set of fake teeth, plaque disclosing tablets, and, of course, toothbrushes. Another small group from the team also served the school by doing crafts. In addition to working with the school, part of the team grabbed tools and headed out to build two gardens, one at the church and one in the community. Both gardens will be a huge blessing to those they served. Additionally, Sierra, one of the team members, used her painting talents to serve the teenagers by teaching a painting class.
On Wednesday the team had the opportunity to take a tour of NicaBike Shop, the first business under our new small business cultivator program. In addition, they visited Huembes Market to pick up a few souvenirs. In the afternoon the team traveled to Laguna de Apoyo for some R&R.
After taking some time to rest on Wednesday, the team jumped back into their projects on Thursday. This included heading to the Bethel School to do the dental hygiene activity as well as crafts with the kids. Another group continued to work with Job to build gardens in the community while the construction team replaced another roof in the community.
Thursday evening marked the end of the teams from Crossroads Community Church. During their time in Nicaragua, the teams made a difference not only in the lives of the Nicaraguan people, but also in their own lives. Through their work and their love they were a demonstration of the hope found in Jesus Christ, hope that can change the world.
– James Belt