Karol Brenes (Pastor Arturo’s wife) continues to operate a Dental Clinic to serve God and the community. She provides free comprehensive dental care for the children and youth in our programs and provides affordable health care to a base of clients who can pay. She works on long-term term solutions that are developmental and preventative in nature, like improving the water and sanitation conditions, and educating parents with basic knowledge of nutrition, hygiene and health care.
Hunger: A Growing Challenge!
Love At Work Ministries has prioritized nutrition and health care as two of the most important intervention areas for the well-being of children and their families.
Hunger is a growing challenge in the urban slums of Alajuelita. “We can talk about education, good health, productivity, creativity . . . but the hungry person has no chance, especially the hungry child.” Jim Morris, former exec director of United Nations World Food Program.
There are 1.02 billion undernourished people in the world today.
That means one in nearly six people does not get enough food to be healthy and lead an active life. Hunger and malnutrition are in fact the number one risk to health worldwide — greater than AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis combined. (World Food Program, "What Is Hunger?" http://www.wfp.org.
We provide food and meals that fill the nutritional gaps that are so common for poor children.
In our school, daily lunches promote attendance, fuel studies and nourish growing bodies. We designed and helped fund a new feeding center in the community that will provide daily nutrition to hundreds of kids. We meet crisis needs for food, medical and dental care while working on long term solutions that are developmental and preventative in nature, like improving water and sanitary conditions and educating people with basic knowledge of nutrition, hygiene and health care.
A smart kid without breakfast and lunch cannot build on his potential. We need to feed souls and minds of these children. But with a hungry stomach we cannot do it. A mother once asked us for our advice, “What should I tell my children when I lay them down at night, and they cry, and they say ‘Mommy, I’m hungry’?”
Food & clean water, and arms to hold them, and a roof that doesn’t leak . . . every child deserves that. But, unfortunately, 19,000 will die somewhere in the world today, and the saddest part is these deaths didn’t have to happen. It doesn’t take that much money to save a life.
Rice Beans Notebooks and Pencils
I don't know how much you think about it, because we take food for granted. A simple breakfast is normal for us. But that's not the reality in the slums of Tejarcillos. Already sick from dirty drinking water, children become malnourished and their bodies can't fight off disease.
We are focused on attending to this need of our students. Our plan was not to open a feeding center by itself. We want to provide opportunities that will create a breakthrough in the lives of these kids. But a hungry child has no chance!