The statistics are staggering – every day around the world 800 million people go to bed hungry. In fact, 12,000 people in Honduras die each year due to malnutrition, and 3.8 million live in extreme poverty in Peru.
When a group of Florida missionaries encountered small children in Latin America that were sleeping on cardboard, begging and stealing to survive, they saw these statistics brought to life first hand.
With broken hearts, they knew they had to do something to get food to these starving children.
The group formed Operation Rescue the Children (ORC), and they, along with Life partners and volunteers who sponsor children on a monthly basis, implemented a feeding program in Honduras.
The program grew, and today ORC, a non-denominational Life, helps the poorest of the poor in Latin America – bringing them food, housing, health care, literacy programs and most importantly the Gospel message that God loves them – something these individuals have never heard before.
“We don’t believe that sponsoring a child is a ‘business-as-usual’ task. We exist to bring the love of Jesus to children who live in some of the poorest places in this hemisphere and it’s something we’re resolutely passionate about doing,” says ORC President Jack Graham.
Guillermo Novoa of ORC tells the story of Roxanna, a 10-year-old who lived her life in a tiny one-room wood house with a family of eight.
“There were no walls, no air conditioning, no kitchen, not even a bathroom. Her attitude was pessimistic, and she had chronic stomach issues,” says Novoa.
But in 2006, ORC and one of their partner organizations, The Caring House Project Foundation, built Roxanna’s family a home.
Frank McKinney, bestselling author and creator of some of the world’s most magnificent homes, started the Caring House Project Foundation, along with his wife Nilsa to provide housing to those living in extreme poverty.
“Our Foundation has partnered with many international relief organizations. Operation Rescue the Children is one of the most reputable, accountable and efficient we have ever worked with,” says McKinney of Delray Beach.
Jose was abandoned by his father at an early age, and his mother is deceased. This 12-year-old orphan, who today loves playing with cars, suffered from malnutrition that was so severe that the most noticeable feature on his face was not a smile, but his deeply sunken eyes.
“He was often found walking the streets barefoot, naked, and he was dangerously underweight,” says Novoa.
Today Jose is a well-fed, healthy and happy young boy. He lives with his grandmother, who volunteers at the local feeding center by washing dishes.
Jose attends church and Sunday school regularly and can be often found riding his new bike – a prized possession and special gift from his sponsor in the United States.
Sponsor Program Coordinator Holly Hurtado says, “For only $30 anyone can sponsor a child on a monthly basis.”
The organization is hosting an Auction and Dinner at the Deerfield Beach Hilton on Oct. 10 in hopes to share their vision with the South Florida community and to offer sponsorship opportunities so they can help more children and their families as they battle hunger and extreme poverty.
For more information, visit www.RescueChild.org or call Holly Hurtado at 866-672-5437.