Sam and I have been invited to work with a very exciting global health project. The University of Colorado is starting a primary care clinic and maternal-child health project in rural Guatemala, and both our skill-sets are going to be useful.
Not only that (but wait, there’s more!), but we will be able to take our whole family, at least on this first trip. We are hoping to hire a language teacher (Spanish) to work with the kids, and we are going to bring a friend’s homeschooled daughter to do nature study and geography with the kids in the afternoons.
The project is an answer to prayer not only for the people of this impoverished region of Guatemala, where the infant mortality rate is nearly five times ours, but also for our family. We have prayed (thanks, Jen!) and waited for a global health project that would use Sam’s teaching gifts. And my passion for maternal-child health. And Sam’s research experience. And our Spanish. Not only all these things… but also, to be a place where we can return year after year to serve, both individually and as a family.
Of course I have no illusions that everything will be perfect (remind me to tell you about the giant pincer bug that bit me in the latrine in Haiti… or maybe that’s TMI?) or that the children are as enamored of the idea as we are. Jonah asked, “Why would we want to leave the country?” Exactly. That’s why.
I want our children to see the more of the world than their little corner. When I was growing up, we traveled a little. When I saw Baskin Robbins in London, I thought, “How nice! There’s a Baskin Robbins in Boulder, and one in London.” I had no idea how big the world was, or how rich my little corner was. Our children have experienced some of the world’s size– and its connectedness– through our Sam’s and my trips to Honduras and Haiti and Thailand. But it is very dear to my heart to let them learn culture and see its beauty through God’s eyes. This is my prayer for them.
Already the trip is coming up fast– we leave November 14. The children’s passports have arrived, and plane tickets have been purchased. Thank you so much for your prayers: for language skills (esp for Sam), for the children (including our friend who will travel with us), for our fund-raising, and for safe travels. I’ll keep you updated as we get closer.