I live in a small Kentucky town, and until one day in December of 2008 I never dreamed I would set foot in Guatemala. That was the day my nephew called to tell me about his plans for a short-term mission trip. When he said ‘Guatemala,’ I immediately said “I want to go.” So I did!! My first trip to Dorie’s Promise came in June of 2009, and now I am truly ‘FOREVER CHANGED.’ I came home knowing I would return because I loved Guatemala and its people.
The children I met at Dorie’s Promise are taken care of and well loved, but not every child in Guatemala City receives that love and care. When we visited the city recycling center known as “the Dump,” we saw the pain and fear in the eyes of the parents living there—parents who only wanted to take care of their children but did not have the means. They depend completely on the garbage for their shelter, food, clothing and everything else they need to survive.
The staff of Forever Changed not only takes care of the children at Dorie’s Promise, but also takes medical teams into the Dump, and has several different projects in the Limonada (Ghetto), various orphanages and teen girls’ and boys’ homes, especially Hogar Madre Anna Viti, also know as the HIV home.
I to returned in December of 2009 and had the blessing of taking my 9-year-old granddaughter with me. Now she loves to tell everyone about her trip and about her friends in Guatemala, and is proud to be a sponsor of Dorie’s Promise. Again I came home knowing I would return someday.
Ashley Williams, a truly amazing young lady, lead our team both times I went to Guatemala. She told us about the Ghetto and the Women’s Prison with tremendous love, we found out she had a plan to visit the prison in February 2010 to give the women a special Valentines Day. As her plan came together I realized there was a plan for me as well. After hearing about Ashley’s plan a dear friend e-mailed me and said, “Lets go!” So we did!
The trip was even more wonderful than I had hoped. We took a large cake, soft drinks, some bibles and a small gift for each person in the prison, and there spent one the most uplifting afternoons of our lives. The women were very welcoming and accepting toward us, and I even got an amazing pedicure!
The Lord has truly opened doors in the prison, and Ashley Williams is walking through with open arms and a great talent for sharing our Lord’s love. Every time I go to Dorie’s Promise I come home happy about the wonderful work that happens there everyday. I feel incredibly blessed to have been there and to have experienced the loving people there. I cannot wait to go back, of course!
I cannot be in Guatemala as much as I would like, but I can pray for and support Dorie’s Promise! I ask that each of you who read this to PLEASE do the same. If you ever have the opportunity to visit there, go! You too will be FOREVER CHANGED.