Six months volunteering in Medellin, Colombia at Ciudad Refugio
We have been volunteering in Medellin, Colombia at Ciudad Refugio, where we have been working with the homeless, addicted, and children and youth from the slums and poor neighborhoods. We have fallen in love with the people here, it has been such a privilege to serve them!
We work with the children at invasiones (invasions), which is where the displaced people have come and made their homes in the outskirts of the city. They make their homes out of scraps. It is a place extremely high in violence, prostitution, and drugs. We love the children and are privileged to be around them to play with them, love them, and teach them!
El Pomar (a low-income neighborhood): We come every Saturday to do activities for the children in this neighborhood—including a drama, games, crafts, and snacks. Same as the children of Manantiales, they are brought to the church to join us for Sunday School. :)
Adriana teaches and I assist. This is the most difficult ministry for us (prayer point) as the majority of the most troubled children end up in our class. If you have ever seen the tv show from the 70’s, “Welcome Back, Kotter,” our classroom is exactly like that! But we love them so much! :)
We spend as much time with the youth as we can, attending their youth meetings, sometimes leading, sometimes just helping out. Also, a small group of youth from Manantiales (the invasions/slums) comes to stay overnight for a few days. It is our joy to spend time with them, teach them, show them love in the simple things, and just hang out with them.
They are an awesome group of kids! :)
I, Jamus, mentor and share devotions with the men in the rehabilitation program. Bottom picture: Jamus with one of his mentee’s, Winston. It’s such an honor to spend time with these men!
These are my beautiful jewels! So precious to God’s heart. I, Adriana, have the privilege to spend a lot of my time with them, to counsel them, pray for them, and teach them. They are curious and lovely. They love God yet they face many struggles because of their past. Please keep these precious women and men on the restoration program in your prayers.
For the first few month’s Jamus was working as a baker as well as doing maintenance, and keeping inventory. He continues to do inventory for the foundation’s bakery and children’s ministry today. Adriana works at the register at the bakery two days a week and additionally does administrative work for the children’s ministry. We are both involved in the communications department helping out with small designs as needed.
You cannot imagine such great depravity until you step into these streets and you are surrounded by lives that are decaying from drug addiction. In these streets are lost mothers, fathers, children, brothers, and sisters. Bodies, and minds are being destroyed. It seems hopeless. But for those of us who believe, this is not a hopeless situation, but an opportunity for God to shine. Please pray for God to restore these lives.
The first floor of the foundation serves as a homeless shelter seven nights a week, and every Saturday the church holds services specifically to reach out to them. Every now and then Jamus has the opportunity to preach to the men in the shelter during these services, and we both love to spend time with them whenever we can in the evenings, to show them love and pray for them. Many of these men are withered and broken from street life and drug use, but their needs are just the same as everyone else’s — they need love.