Before the installation of her eco-stove, Alicia would have to visit a health clinic every week because of respiratory problems. Now she enjoys cooking for her family again.
Entries in Healthy Communities Program (15)
Nohemy's entire family used to get sick from the smoke from the open cooking fire they used to cook in their home. With the eco-stove, now their home is a healthy place to gather.
Willow Creek Community Church in South Barrington, Illinois sent their final serving team of 2012 to San Jacinto in the Santa Ana Region. The dedicated six-member team joined Zurisadai Church, helping with a water project and ministering to the people of the community as well. Team member Joy Bork said, "This experience really helped me see how the local church is the hope of the world. Through pairing together with ENLACE and Zurisadai, I was able to be a tangible representation of Christ's hands and feet in the community of San Jacinto."
A missions team from SeaCoast Grace Church (Cypress, California) returned to Nueva Jerusalen Church in San Jose El Naranjo for the 8th consecutive year. From July 22-26, the team, ENLACE staff, along with church and community members, worked together on the construction of 20 latrines which will improve the health of many families in the community.
“We all thought we would be coming to change peoples lives, but in reality it was quite the opposite, they changed our lives and gave us an experience we will never forget”-Justine Phillips. Service, prayer, faith, were some of the lessons each member of the team could learn during their first mission trip to El Salvador in La Estancia. Despite the fierce heat, every team member did their best to join the church in building a health clinic that will serve around 2000 families, and bringing transformation to an entire community. The strong relationships created during the week impacted the team as well as the community involved in the construction. As Justine said, their lives and the community will never be the same.
The Gateway Church is a vibrant young church in downtown Des Moines Iowa that is dedicated to "join God in the renewal of all things." As part of living out this mission in Des Moines the church committed to join in the renewal of the San Martin region of El Salvador through a church partnership with ENLACE.
Another group of students from Willow Creek Community Church came to El Salvador for Spring Break. The team from the Crystal Lake campus spent the week with The Arca de Dios Church in El Ranchador helping begin construction for a new medical clinic. The team ministered to children in the community by visiting a Compassion International site and challenging students from the public school in a soccer game. They served with joy as they took part in the ongoing transformation of El Ranchador.
A team from The Gateway Church in Des Moines, Iowa, traveled to El Salvador for the first time to spend the week of March 3-10 with Pastor Marta Vaquerano, her church Palabra de Poder and the community of Anemona. Their task was to help build tilapia tanks, but from the very beginning the team was just as focused on building relationships and connecting with the community. While making ty advances toward finishing tilapia ponds, the group also held a children’s program and brought food and encouragement to the poorest families in Anemona. Both the team and the community eagerly await Gateway’s next trip.
At ENLACE, we define community transformation as a dynamic and continual process that is rooted in restored relationships and sacrificial service. This February relationships were restored and hundreds of people were served through the combined efforts of two Salvadoran churches and the Meadowbrook Community Church from Champaign, IL. They worked together to repair roads and attend to patients at makeshift health clinics organized by the partnering churches in Las Delicias and Santa Maria.
Community and church members in the area welcomed the medical team and a road repair crew who, through their service, turned churches into clinics and sorrow into joy.
The enthusiasm of the group was tangible in their warm greetings and joyful smiles. Aside from parasites and chest colds, the most common complaints from patients were pains and problems with their nerves, surely present due to their abundance of worry and sorrow. Dr. Pierce, who perceived pain that went beyond physical illness, not only prescribed medications, but also shared a special time of prayer with each patient, recognizing that there are some ailments for which the only cure is God’s love and grace.
Meanwhile, other members of the team helped community members to repair the main road in front of the Good Samaritan Church. Although the task was not easy, the presence of old friends from the community motivated them to work strongly day after day during the week of digging, moving rocks, mixing cement, and building a wall that will prevent erosion of the newly repaired road.
Meadowbrook’s relationship with the Good Samaritan Church has strengthened tremendously over the past six years, and they are now excited to have new friendships in the Prince of Peace Church in Santa Maria, as well. Both the Meadowbrook team and the communities were blessed as they opened the church doors to the tired, the sick, and the poor in hopes of bringing rest, health, and restoration through the ongoing process of community transformation in San Martin.