Saturday, April 21, 2007

On the Streets of Belo Horizonte

On Friday night the Rescue House team went to the streets to sing, talk, play games and hang out with the children and people who live in this area of Belo Horizonte. The Rescue House team has been visiting this area of the city for over 10 years now. This was my first time visiting and I loved talking with the kids in my broken Portuguese and singing in the streets. Please pray that the LOVE of the Lord would flow through our lives during our time on the streets and that God would impact lives of both children and street people in a powerful way.

These two girls are about 15 years old and they both live on the streets. In this photo the girls have their hands drawn to their mouth because they are actually inhaling paint thinner to get high...

Many street children and street people hold a small balled-up piece of material of some type that is drenched in paint thinner. They constantly inhale the paint thinner to stay high. It is so sad to see such young children and teens high on the paint thinner. Please pray for these children.

How precious are these boys... Both of these boys play on the streets at night and they live in a fevela in Belo Horizonte. Pray protection over their lives, that they would not turn to a lifestyle of living on the streets.

Kids on the streets of Belo Horizonte. Some of these kids live on the streets and others live in a nearby fevela (slum) and often come and hang out in this area of the city. Pray that the children still living with their families would not be drawn to the streets through their interaction with the street children.

This week I spent a lot of time playing UNO with several different street children, some teenagers and some younger. The street children LOVE to play this game and have their own special way of playing. By playing games and spending time on the streets, we make relationships with the children and talk with them. My Portuguese is limited, but the kids enjoy hearing me speak English. By visiting the kids and talking to them we can share the LOVE and HOPE of Jesus and let them know how they can get off the streets. Throughout the week, our team also visits some of the families of the children and try to get the children reconnected with their families.

Friday, April 13, 2007

My life in Belo Horizone, Brazil so far...

This is a photo taken from the front courtyard area of the house where I am living. The city of Belo Horizonte is surrounded by beautiful mountains! The streets of the city actually remind me of San Francisco! There are many steep hills and walking around the city is great exercise. After being here a week I am starting to walk places and take the bus by myself. It is so neat because whenever I have a problem or need help with directions or which bus to take, God always provides a person to help me at just the right moment. God truly has been with me every step of the way. I am so thankful!

Here is picture of my room-I am on the top bunk! I share a room with two other staff workers. One girl is from Brazil (Jeanete) and the other one is from Holland (Mariska). They are great and have been so welcoming to me! I am so thankful that the girl from Holland speaks English and the Brazilian girl is very patient with my Portuguese.

This is the place I am taking my Portuguese course at! On Wednesday I started my Portuguese class through a local university here in Belo Horizonte. I will go to class two days a week. In this class there are about 12 people from many different countries. I am very thankful for the opportunity to study in a classroom setting. I know it will help me progress more quickly in my language skills!

This is the Rescue team-minus one guy who is taking the photo! Also the two boys on the right are street boys who just completed a two week trial period in the house. They just moved into the home for boys- Restoration House- this past Tuesday. Please pray for a good transition into their new life there.

On Monday we begin the regular schedule of opening the house to people and children in need, and then we will also go out on the streets every day throughout the week to reach out to children and families living in the slums (in Portuguese- fevelas). We will also be building relationships with many of the street kids too. Through getting to know the street kids, we will see if they would potentially want to come and live in one of the YWAM shelters. The Rescue team literally does what the name of the team is called- we will go to the streets and RESCUE children who are in great need.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

I am in Brazil!

I am now in Beo Horizonte, Brazil! I am so thankful!

I am working at the Rescue house and so far my transition here has been good! Currently we have two boys staying at the Rescue House and today they are moving into a permenant home for street boys- called Restoration House. We are about to take them over this afternoon. They have been living here for 2 weeks, as a transition time and to prepare for life at the house. This trial period is a good way to ease them into a new lifestyle. Living on the streets is very different. The boys must know they are expected to behave, help do chores, and participate in bible studies and prayer times. The two boys are a little nervous about going over, but they are excited too.

After we take the boys over I am going to a local univerisity to sign up for a Portuguese class. I will go to this class every Tues. and Thurs. from 4:00-5:30. I am VERY excited about this because I know it will be very helpful in learning the language. I am SO thankful that there are 2 people in the house that I am in living in that speak English. I am not totally lost, thanks to them. They have been so helpful to me!

I will try to write more later... Wanted to post a little update.