Throughout the past ten years, Point of Impact has been partnering with various teams to serve alongside our staff and ministry leaders in Tegucigalpa. We have built many relationships along the way—but one family soon became a crucial asset to our teams coming each month—the Crook family.
For several years now, our teams have stayed in a beautifully traditional Honduran hotel. The Humuya Inn. Originally the home of Mimi Crook and her family, it was refurbished to accommodate more visitors including various mission teams such as our own.
On our latest trip, the Crook family, Scott and Mimi, and their three daughters, joined alongside the POI staff and the Fellowship Memphis Student Team to serve amongst the streets of Tegucigalpa. It isn’t often that the same people who host and accommodate your team serve alongside you throughout the week…but this week we were honored to do so!
We have had the opportunity to be a part of POI for many years now but this was the first time to be so directly involved with a team. We were able to go to the INFHA Special-Needs Orphanage—it was a very special time and the thing that hit me was how innocent these children were. Obviously impaired but just smiling away being silly and playing with us. I had the best time feeding a young man named R. R could not feed himself and he was loving the vanilla pudding that the team brought. I also fed him cookies (he was flying from the sugar) and he kept biting my fingers. Each time I would try to put the wafer in his mouth and quickly get my fingers out before his teeth came slamming down…….he got me several times it just made me laugh. I would have estimated R to be 8 or 9 years old but on the way back to the Inn they told me he was 18. I would have never guessed in a million years.
[Later on we visited the city dump,] I was able to talk to three women one was 29, 23 and 16 years old (two sisters and a cousin). They explained to me that the garbage trucks come and the first one the “old people” get, then the next truck in the women get and then lastly the 3rd truck is for the men that cycle repeats itself all day. That is the order and she said that in general that is respected among themselves. They say that they work 7 days a week and collect plastic bottles, cans, cardboard and they sell it to a truck that is parked in the dump itself. Many of them had many layers of clothing on even though it was not cold and were basically just covered in trash. It was about as sad a scene I have ever seen and just remembering it as I write brings tears to my eyes. They make about $4.50 /day digging through others’ trash and reselling it. I don’t know what other job could be worse…..The city dump was something that I knew I needed to see and I’m glad I was able to experience for a very short time the reality that too many Hondurans live in to just survive. They still had light in their eyes but I don’t know how much more they can take in the dump.
There were two highlights in my time with POI this week. One was spending time at the special needs orphanage and visiting the city dump. As a Honduran, I am honored to be part of a team that helps the less fortunate. We have been blessed by supporting POI through their backpack ministry for several years and when the opportunity to serve as translators this year came up, we were thrilled to be able to directly serve alongside with a POI team. We look forward to continue supporting POI, since we have experienced firsthand how their ministry is changing current and future generations of Hondurans.
I had the privilege to translate for the POI team a couple weeks ago, and it was quite an amazing experience. I have lived in Honduras for most of my life and have never been to some of the places we visited throughout the week. It was an eye opening experience that I will never forget. My love for Honduras, the country I grew up in, intensified… and made me realize that there are so many opportunities to continue to serve in ways that I had never realized and in places that I had never wanted to go before. I look forward to next summer when I can again come back and translate for the team.
I had a great experience working with POI. I made lots of memories and friends that I will never forget. I lived in Honduras for 9 years and had never been to the places we had been. It was a great trip and I hope to get to do it again.
Translating for POI this year for the first year was an incredible experience because I got to not only translate but I got to know the children we were working with in a whole new level. The kids made me feel as if I could love on them and they easily loved me back. The hardest part of the trip was when I had to visit the city dump. I have lived in Honduras for 12 years and never once visited it. Translating there, I got to know this lady who had 5 children and she was telling me that her husband had left her and she had no money or food to provide for her children… but in the midst of all that, she said she had faith in God and he would provide for her. It was a true blessing and it reminded me how blessed I am by God and how I don’t even realize it.
One evening at the Humuya, David Hamilton (founder of POI) was sitting in the lobby when one of the hotel guests approached him. He had been staying at the Humuya for several months now on a business project and had watched four teams from POI come through during his stay.
“I have been watching your team and I see how they treat each other and the hotel with respect. They seem to be really excited about why they are here and what they are doing.”
After watching the teams and hearing about their experiences as they passed through—this man laid a envelope in front of David with a $500 check tucked inside. As a result,
- Karla’s family (who recently lost their mother) was given a two month supply of food
- Marlen’s family would no longer sleep on the dirt floors because she was given a new mattress
- Javier’s daughter was given a stomach surgery to correct issues affecting her unborn child
- Dania, one of our first-graders at POI Villa Nueva was given treatment for her systemic disease
- Dania’s roommates in her hospital ward were also given food and basic necessities, not otherwise provided by the hospital.