In 2014, Orphan Outreach began a partnership with Lilly Ferrer and Esperanza y Futuro (Hope & Future), a children’s home located outside San Lucas, Guatemala. The home provides a safe and loving environment for more than 22 teen moms and children rescued from abuse, neglect, and trafficking.Lilly first ran a baby home in San Lucas, caring for little ones from newborn to 3 years of age. The babies were most often rescued from trash cans, street corners, septic tanks, and buildings where they were abandoned. In 2012, she was called to rescue a little boy named Diego. He had been found in a septic tank, injured and very sick because of the waste he had been breathing. When she arrived to receive him, she was asked if she could take two more infants. One, a little girl, had been found in a hotel, wrapped in toilet paper and placed in a trash can. The other, a little boy, was found outside in a sack covered with leaves and rocks. As she and a volunteer drove away, she looked down at the infants. “Diego was on my lap on a pillow to protect his fragile body. One baby was cradled in my right arm and one was snuggled in my left. I realized that all had come from the same circumstances. I realized every one of these children belonged to someone – someone who was afraid and desperate and needed love. God placed a drop of home in me that something could be done.”Lilly opened Hope & Future in 2013 to care not only for the infants but for their mothers as well. The home is also a welcome place for other children who have been abandoned or abused. Special educational programs have been designed to meet the needs of all who live there, and the teen moms learn life skills and business skills that will help them prepare for adulthood.Orphan Outreach provides humanitarian aid and funding for special projects. In addition, short-term mission teams visit to offer support, teach, do construction and building updates, and share Christ-focused love with the children.The children in this program are available for monthly sponsorship but for privacy reasons we do not have their photos online. For information on sponsoring an available children please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Population: 12,728,111 (July 2007)
Birth Rate: 29.09 births/1,000 population
Death Rate: 5.27 deaths/1,000 population
Infant Mortality Rate total: 29.77 deaths/1,000 live births
Population below poverty line: 56.2% (2004)
Est. # people living with HIV/AIDS: 61,000; 0.9% adult (15-49) prevalence rate (2005)
Unemployment rate: 3.2% (2005)
Literacy Rate (age 15 + can read & write): 69.1% total population
Estimated 370,000 children (0-17) orphaned (2005)
Type of Government: Representative democracy
Language(s): Spanish (60%); Amerindian languages (40%)
Religion: Roman Catholic, Protestant, and indigenous Mayan beliefs
Guatemala is located in Central America, bordering the North Pacific Ocean, between El Salvador and Mexico, and bordering the Caribbean Sea between Honduras and Belize.
UNICEF estimates that there are more than 370,000 orphans in Guatemala and at least 5,000 children live on the streets of the capital, abandoned by mothers who are too poor to keep them.
Only 24 percent of the population attends Secondary school (1996-2005).
Only 58 percent of municipalities have a secondary school.
Five out of 10 students who enter primary school in urban areas complete primary school, as opposed to only two out of 10 in rural areas.
Some 67 percent of indigenous children suffer from chronic malnutrition.
27 percent of all children under 5 are underweight.
The distribution of income remains highly unequal with about 56% of the population below the poverty line.
The indigenous population, the Maya, make up about half of the population. Mayan languages are spoken alongside Spanish, the official tongue. Many Guatemalans are of mixed Amerindian-Hispanic origin.
Guatemalans live in one of the most inequitable societies in the region. Poverty is particularly widespread in the countryside and among indigenous communities. Illiteracy, infant mortality and malnutrition are among the highest in the region, life expectancy is among the lowest and, in common with many of its neighbors, the country is plagued by organized crime and violent street gangs.
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