Crystal and I are excited to let you know about the next chapter of our lives. We recently traveled to Quito, Ecuador, where we served with the Dunamis Foundation, a ministry to adolescent girls rescued from sex and labor trafficking. Upon our return, we knew that the Lord had us there for a significant reason regarding our future ministry.
A little background information is necessary in order to explain our future work. In Ecuador, adult prostitution is legal in brothels. However, younger girls are often deceived, kidnapped, or forced into this work. When underage girls are discovered by the police, they are pulled out and put into temporary government shelters. After a few months, the girls are “released” to families that are unable to support them, or to some other despairing circumstance. More often than not, these girls find themselves back into the destitute world of prostitution and trafficking.
The Dunamis Foundation, birthed in 2009, helps these child survivors develop life skills and receive opportunities for holistic healing so that they may break out of this dangerous cycle. These services are covered with the love of Christ and experienced by the girls often for the first time in their lives. Hundreds of girls have been helped over the years, yet the founders believed that more was needed: a protection house where girls could grow up and heal, become educated and reintegrate into the world as healthy young women. Recently blessed with a beautiful, seven-acre parcel of land on the edge of Quito, the Dunamis Foundation is now planning to build this protection house where up to twenty girls will live and transition into a new life.
Here’s the amazing way the Lord has blended our gifts, experience and education with the immediate needs of the Dunamis Foundation. A.T., a “jack-of-all-trades” with an undergraduate degree in construction management, will supervise the construction of the protection house (groundbreaking expected this summer). Crystal will serve in the ministry to the girls, some as young as 12, oftentimes pregnant, recently abused, and with deep emotional, mental, and physical wounds. God will use her background in social services and management to implement programming and coordinate the transition of the protection house once it is completed.
In order to serve as full-time missionaries, we have recently joined Fuel the Mission, an organization which is already at work with Dunamis and has completed a number of building projects in Ecuador and around the world. We are planning to move to Quito at the end of June. Having already given our employers notice, we have moved in with some great friends until we depart.
Would you consider joining us in this adventure? Our website will contain updates including prayer requests, the progress of the project and ways in which God is moving in our hearts as well as in the hearts of our brothers and sisters in Ecuador.
We are asking you to consider committing to us in prayer and/or monthly support. We are trying to raise $2,205.30 per month and are looking for those who can pledge to support us monthly. Any donation can help, starting up a new life in a different country has a good amount of up front costs. This is the first time we are completely relying on God’s provision through the body of Christ. You may click here to set up online giving via the Fuel the Mission website (Rise Up Ministries).
We would love to talk to you more about this so please feel free to call or contact us. We are so excited about the journey ahead and hope that you’ll join us on our blog, email, mail, phone, and letters.