Why is Casa Hogar, a home for street children and orphans in Honduras, such an important ministry to support?
Close to 9% of Honduran children ages 5-14 work full-time. That labour includes: street begging and vending, work in repair shops, washing car windows and performing at traffic lights, scavenging in garbage dumps, domestic work, commercial sexual exploitation as a result of human trafficking, forced begging, use in illicit activities, including by gangs in committing homicides, extortion, and selling and trafficking drugs.
According to the Bureau of International Labour Affairs: “Reports indicate that gangs sometimes threaten families as a means to forcibly recruit children into their ranks, where boys are used to commit extortion, drug trafficking, and homicide, and where girls are engaged in commercial sexual exploitation. Children who lack economic and educational opportunities are the most vulnerable and are also among the most likely to migrate to other countries. Once en route, they are also vulnerable to human trafficking and commercial sexual exploitation. In Honduras, access to education is often limited. Reports indicate that approximately 220,000 children between the ages of 5 and 17 lack access to the educational system… In urban areas, widespread violence and the recruitment of children into gangs hinders access to education because the journey to and from school has become so dangerous. In addition, school completion rates are low and many children fail to complete primary education. According to 2015 data, only 58.3 percent of girls and 47.4 percent of boys completed secondary school.” * Source
Casa Hogar is dedicated to providing a safe place for children who come from dangerous streets and difficult home situations. Under the oversight and ministry of Fellowship International missionary, Melodie Francis, children and youth are provided with food, clothing, shelter, education, health care, counselling, and an introduction to a Heavenly Father who loves them.
Through FAIR, your support has provided hope for Honduran children. But we urgently need a miracle if Casa Hogar is to remain open and operating on behalf of those least able to defend themselves. The mother house in Spain that began the ministry in Honduras many years ago advised FAIR that it was no longer able to maintain the home and was considering closing Casa Hogar’s doors, sending the children back to the streets. Since then, FAIR has been in negotiations for the transfer of responsibility from the mother house to FAIR. But such a move has serious financial implications. With that need in mind, FAIR launched the Fresh Start appeal in the winter of 2019.
The need is URGENT if we hope to maintain this ministry and look after this “quiver full” of needy young people. For more information on how you can help click here.