I have two children who live in Urban Honduras:
Celeste & Alexander
Compassion works mostly near the big cities of San Pedro Sula and Tegucigalpa, but I'm sure there are other areas that are considered urban.
The urban regions that Compassion works in are extremely poor. These communities typically have a very stark difference from the big cities. The big cities in Honduras are where the middle and upper class people in the country live. The cities are full of stores selling electronics, nice clothing, popular fast food. There are high-class restaurants, movie theaters, and large, modern homes.
Then, often just a 10 minute drive away from the big cities, you will find the city slums. Homes in the city slums are very small, often just one room, and made of wood, iron, and cardboard. Most homes in urban Honduras do have electricity and some even have satellite TV, that is either purchased for cheap, or stolen, from the city. People typically have access to clean water, but it must be purchased from a traveling water truck. Poor families cannot always afford to purchase clean water and then have to rely on collecting rainwater or drinking from dirty streams.
Urban slums offer very little protection for children. Poor families often can't afford to send their children to school, so young children are either kept at home or roam the streets. Teens are often expected to get a job to support their family. Sadly, one of Honduras' biggest issues is gang violence. Teens that don't receive any education are often recruited into gangs, perpetuating the cycle of violence and drugs.
Thankfully, Compassion watches their enrolled children very closely. All children are encouraged to stay in school and are discouraged from dropping out to get jobs for their families. Compassion teaches the children and their families that while having the children working jobs will help in the short-term, a full education will help in the long-term, allowing these children to escape poverty as adults. Compassion also provides homework help and educational lessons to children at the project. Of course, writing letters to sponsors is a great way for children to practice literacy:
Children in the urban regions of Honduras are often malnourished, living mainly on tortillas, rice, and chicken, usually only in 1-2 meals a day. Children enrolled in Compassion receive healthy meals and snacks each time they attend the project. Compassion focuses a lot on providing fresh fruit and vegetables, that children don't usually receive at home.
Compassion also provides the children with an open area at their projects to run, play games, and enjoy time with their friends, away from the means streets.
Compassion Urban Honduras asks for the following prayer requests:
- Pray for registered children and their parents to persevere in Jesus' name.
- Pray for children who come from single-parents homes.
- Pray for children and families who are traveling as immigrants to the United States.
- Pray for children and families who live well under the poverty line, on less than one dollar a day.
I want to share two children with you today. These children both live in urban areas of Honduras and are waiting for a sponsor to love and encourage them.
Meet Emerson. He is 9 years old. His birthday is July 12th. He lives with his father and mother. His father works as a laborer when he is able to find work. Emerson enjoys playing soccer, swimming, and riding a bike. His chores include carrying water, making beds, and running errands. He has average performance at school.
This is Estefany. She is 11 years old. Her birthday is August 24th, 2003. She lives with her mother and one sibling. Her chores include helping in the kitchen, running errands, and cleaning. She enjoys singing, art, and reading She has average performance at school.