We have a generational approach at Casa Angelina. We do not want to simply impact the children we rescue; it is our dream to have a greater effect—one that will potentially impact the future of Guatemala. It is our hope that what we invest into our children will equip them to become significant, kind, and generous citizens. It is also our hope that the cycle will continue as they have families of their own.
What Matters Ministries and Missions is founded on the core beliefs: “You reap what you sow” and “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” At Casa Angelina, we teach the children that living by just these simple principles can make a huge difference not only in their lives but also in the lives of others. There are opportunities all around us in Guatemala to give to those in desperate need. The children came to Casa Angelina having experienced deplorable conditions, they were rescued, and their lives were completely changed. They love every chance they have to give back and make a difference in someone else’s life. Below are a few examples of giving to others from what we have been given.
One way that the teenagers of Casa Angelina have given back is by going to an orphanage in the neighboring city of Chimaltenango. The children at this particular orphanage are special-needs kids, and they absolutely love the interaction when we visit them. We take games, coloring books, and simple crafts to do with the kids. We also clean the kitchen and other areas for the orphanage staff. This has impacted not only the children of the orphanage but our teens as well. They return humbled by all they have been given at Casa Angelina, and they are empowered that they can make a difference in someone else’s life.read more
Another way we teach our children to give back is by visiting the huge garbage dump in Chimaltenango.
Many families with children live in and around this dump and search through the garbage on a daily basis looking for anything they can eat, sell, or trade. Before we go, our children receive special training from the teachers at the Casa Angelina school. They are given a course in how to teach reading and writing to the precious children there. It is an exciting day when we load up the cars with food, crayons, pencils, paper, and books and head to the dumps of Chimaltenango. Most of our children had no schooling before they came to Casa Angelina, but now they are giving the gift of understanding as they teach these children how to read simple words and phrases.read more
THE WIDOW PROJECT
Our teens are also involved in our outreach to widows. They visit the widows in our local area, taking them food and clean water on a weekly basis. They also volunteer their time to do household chores of cleaning, making minor repairs, doing laundry, and taking wood for cooking. The teens return to Casa Angelina with full hearts and a self-worth that only comes from giving to those who can never repay them. Our children’s eyes are being opened to the need around them, and they realize that they can be the answer to that need.read more
Living the Heart of God
OUR CHILDREN’S ENTERPRISE
Food is always a needed and welcomed gift in the villages around Casa Angelina. One year during a particularly heavy rainy season, the school children made crafts to sell to the teams that visited Casa Angelina. They raised enough money to buy a large amount of beans and cornmeal, loaded up the supplies, and took them to remote villages in the hardest-hit flood areas. They passed out the food to starving people whose crops had been washed away. It was a wonderful experience to watch our teens go door to door in the nearby village and ask if any food supplies were needed. At one house, a lady greeted them with her hands lifted in the air, shouting, “I have been praying for a miracle! We are completely out of all our food, and God answered us with you!” The kids were elated to be the answer to someone else’s need!read more
In our neighboring village of El Sitan and other villages around it, we take medical teams to minister and medically treat the people. Although some from this village regularly walk to our clinic to receive medical care, some cannot make the journey. In the past, we have taken medical missions groups to well over 17 rural villages throughout Guatemala. At these makeshift clinics, the local people are treated for minor injuries and receive diagnoses and appropriate medications. Thanks to our clinic staff and medical teams, hundreds of villagers have been treated who would have never received any medical care otherwise.read more
Several years ago, the remote mountain village of Chimixaya was hit extremely hard by rains and flooding. Many people lost their lives, homes were destroyed, and crops were washed down the hillsides. We were able to drive back to this village and take medical necessities, vaccinations, and food. We were also able to assist some local people in getting back on their feet by helping them start their own businesses. A generous Canadian group came and built them sturdy chicken coops and bought 20 chickens per family, instantly putting them in the chicken farm business! We were also able to build seven houses in the remote village of Panimache that replaced the ones that had been washed away.read more
For many years while Casa Angelina was just being established, we came alongside another orphanage, Casa Carmen, that needed help. The orphanage began as a daycare out of the home of a couple in a very poor area of Guatemala City. But as the need grew, they started to take in children permanently. They had received more than 60 children. We were able to provide them with basic necessities, such as shampoo, soap, and vitamins. We also took food, clothing, and financial support on a monthly basis. On occasion, we would bus the children out of the city to the beautiful hillside orphanage of Casa Angelina where we would have a piñata party, food, and gifts for them.read more
POLICE WORLD CUP SOCCER
One of the most surprising ways that we have had an opportunity to give back is with our beautiful, new soccer field. Local groups frequently ask to use this fantastic facility. In fact, the entire police department from the city of Chimaltenango has an ongoing tournament. There are 22 police stations in Chimaltenango involved in this tournament, and it ends when one station is crowned the World Cup Soccer Champions of Chimaltenango! Each week trucks of policemen come and go from Casa Angelina, and our children delight in rooting for them!read more