Last year we made our 12th annual trip to Costa Rica to visit our friends at the Vuelo de Aguila church in San Jose and to plan for the future of our youth and church programs there. One by One Costa Rica started with the desire over 12 years ago to help at-risk teens in San Jose "one by one." Over the years, through the joint efforts of the Wyatt and Lee families and Pastors William and Anais Padilla, we have been able to operate a free soccer league to draw at-risk teens in and then provide them with support and mentorship from Vuelo de Aguila church members, who also coached the teams. At its height, the church sponsored three boys and one girls teams. Members of these teams have since become members and leaders of the church. Many have gone on to secure an education and jobs that allow them to be productive members of the church and community, and many of them are close friends.
Several years ago, we all realized that the church needed a permanent home, and we raised funds to buy a church building. Dr. Steve Scott and his wife, Rebecca, were instrumental in this effort by providing a loan for the building. Through a lot of hard work and fundraising since then, and because of Dr. and Mrs. Scott's generosity, we were able to pay off the loan this year. This means that the church now has a solid financial foundation to carry out its mission and outreach programs.
One by One started with an idea formulated in a vacant soccer field in a barrio in San Jose, and has now come to beenfit many teens and their families, but always "one by one." One by One Costa Rica was founded and has expanded over the last decade because of the partnership consisting of Daniel, Ben and Amelia Wyatt; Alex and Cammie Lee; the Wyatt and Lee families; and our close firends at the Vuelo de Aguila church, including Pastors William and Anais Padilla and their children (LeeAnn, Willi, Keren, Daniela and Isaac), and many other church members.
The future is full of promise to continue positively affecting the lives of others in San Jose, to continue the Christian mission of the Vuelo de Aguila church, and we are looking forward to taking our 13th trip to Costa Rica soon!
What started as an idea just over 6 years ago has turned into an amazing reality. And the reality is that of hundreds of kids' lives will be different. But not because of what we have done, but because of how God has used each of us. Would you consider being a part of this exciting journey with us?
|Why your gift makes a lasting difference
Thanks to our generous donors, we've seen tremendous growth in just 6 short years. Fundraising has gone from $16,000 in 2011 to $563,000 in 2014. That's over 3,400%! And some pretty amazing things have happened not only to grow the program and church, but life change is happening in the community.
SEE THE RESULTS