Friday, December 23, 2016

December Update

Merry Christmas!!! As we look back on this last year, we are so grateful for the full year that we've had. Good things have happened - at the end of November we had a board meeting so we worked at collecting all the data for the year and we were amazed at the numbers! 230 Ultrasounds, 13,000 patients seen in general medicine, dentures are now being made this year, over 300 short term volunteers, over 25+ churches represented at the pastors trainings we host quarterly, 700 families that attended a family night where we encourage them to grow in Jesus together, 500 eye care patients, lots of families that received either a latrine, floor, or a house that would otherwise not have one. I could go on and on.

When we stop to see all that is happening here at El Ayudante every day, and see the big picture, we are once again amazed at the goodness of God. 

The month of December has been much busier than we meant for it to be - but such is life. I haven't figured out how to slow down the clock yet. 

We first had a week of board meetings - which is always mentally challenging and great for looking at how we can improve and continue to move forward. Our Dad's are both on the board so it's fun to have family around too! We left the week feeling encouraged and energized for next year!

While here my Dad taught a John Maxwell leadership class for the Community Transformation Committees and it was open to any staff or community leaders - I was very excited to have the room packed with 25 peoples seeking to learn more leadership. I feel like this is a great sign that shows the community wants to grow and take responsibility for their own community and their own growth!

November 30th was Sigel's High School graduation day! What a smart kid! We are very proud of him and all of his scholastic accomplishments - just 8 years ago he was at a 2nd grade level in Spanish - and he graduated with honors at a bi-lingual school! And he won a surprise scholarship! Great Job Sigel! It was a very proud moment for all of us! 
What's next you ask? He's preparing now to join the US Air Force! So hopefully we'll know more in the next 6 months as we do the preparation needed for him to join the Air Force.

We then headed off with my in-laws on a road trip to Guatemala! We went to the area of Puerto Barrios - about 7 hours away and stayed there for a week. We LOVED the focused time of playing with our kids - in the pool, playing board games, volleyball, a hike, a swim in a waterfall, and a boat ride up a really cool river canyon. It was a much needed break and time away as a family. (I also think it's awesome how our staff is so capable that we were gone for a week and everything went well!)


We returned from Guatemala to a team at El Ayudante - our last team of the year - the most exciting project for me that they accomplished was that they poured the entire cement floor for the new Learning Center! In one day they poured 83 bags of cement! That is by far a record for us of how many has been done in one day! We continue to advance on the Learning Center and new scholarship program!

This year Grandpa was here to decorate the tree with us! It was a lot of fun. 

MERRY CHRISTMAS TO YOU ALL! Thank you for all of the love and support! 

With much love,
Tristan, Beth, Sigel, Maddy, and Ali

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