Carlos and Moisés wind through the dirt roads covered in trash in their neighborhood, La Verbena, Guatemala. Their community made international headlines this year when their hospitals had to bury dozens of unidentified coronavirus victims, but unfortunately, death is a part of everyday life in La Verbena. Gangs and drug lords hold the puppet strings on local leaders, making an already challenging life more difficult. The country’s mass grave lies next to the local AMG center the brothers are making their way to, but they don’t give it much thought. This is everyday life for them and their friends.
They live with their mother in a very humble rental home, and she has survived for years selling stickers and small plastic toys in the street or in front of the school the brothers attend, AMG’s Rayo de Luz School. Since the pandemic onset, she has been unable to work due to the country-wide shutdown and shelter-in-place mandate. Their family was already struggling to keep food on the table while paying their other bills, and they’ve been very grateful for the food supplies that AMG has been providing for their community.
Christmas was already hard for Carlos and Moisés’ family before the COVID-19 pandemic, but a Christmas gift is the last thing their mother could worry about this year. But because of you, these brothers will be going to a celebration they weren’t sure would happen this year.
COVID-19 has affected us all in some capacity, but those effects are more troubling in the developing world. Something as simple as providing a mask for your children is an impossibility in countries like Guatemala, and most children are now seriously behind in their studies. Many of these children will have to go to work instead of school when life opens back up. AMG has been checking in with each of the families at least once per week, monitoring their schoolwork and health. Many kids in the community are left at home alone while their parents work, even in these dangerous areas like La Verbena. People are overwhelmed, and Christmas is coming!
AMG sponsored children have always looked forward to December. Why? Because it’s Bundles of Love month! For years, AMG has organized this gift-giving event where children are provided a “bundle,” which could be in the form of an AMG Backpack, package or sack. These gifts include much- needed supplies like clothing, shoes, pencils/pens, a blanket or bedding, soap, vitamins, and of course, a fun Christmas gift!
Unlike other gift programs that send a package of small items from the U.S. to a needy family in a developing country, AMG organizes the local purchase of the gifts according to the current needs of the communities where we work. Buying locally allows us to stretch our dollars, support local businesses and avoid costly transportation. Our focus for 2020 will be on each family’s most desperate needs like food relief, hygiene kits, masks, blankets and home-school supplies. The bundles are given to these families while our national leaders share the gospel, the greatest hope for this suffering world around us.
Our Bundles of Love program is an affordable way for us to help those in great need, showing Christ’s love in a very tangible way and bringing much- needed relief and joy to a family in need this holiday season. Your participation would not only provide relief from worry for these families, but you would be sharing the Joy of the season, which is needed, especially this year.