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JTP CARES – Guatemala

As a Wedding, Event, and Lifestyle Photographer for the past 5 years, my job is beautiful and fulfilling! Working with breathtaking brides and grooms, capturing families on vacation or at special milestones, helping entrepreneurs building their brand, etc. is a joy and a privilege.

At the same time, I get to be married to a pastor, and have opportunities to serve, teach, and minister to people in our local community and around the world! 

It has been the passion and prayer of my husband and I, to look for ways to merge our worlds- to use the skills God has given me creatively to further the mission God has for us as believers in Christ.

This week, God provided an opportunity that did absolutely that! My husband and I  had the opportunity to travel to Guatemala City with the Leadership Team of One More Child Global, an organization led by Dr. Jerry and Christi Haag that fights for the physical and spiritual health of children all over the world, to help put on an Anti-Trafficking Conference in partnership with the First Lady of Guatemala, Patricia Marroquin Argueta de Morales. 

The conference took place at the National Palace, where over 200 members of government and community leadership listened to the Executive Director of Anti-Trafficking, Christa Hicks, and her Associate, Erika Valdes, explain the underlying issues of children’s lives that make them vulnerable to trafficking. They also taught on internet safety, and explained powerful ways to help victims of trauma heal. It was beautiful to see how these leaders left the conference with a stronger resolve, and greater confidence, to continue fighting for the children of their communities. 

First Lady Patricia Marroquin Argueta de Morales and her team showed us wonderful hospitality throughout our trip. The love she has for the people of her nation is evident, and we learned that she is taking action all over the country to provide daycares and feeding centers for preschool children. When my husband asked her how our church could pray for she and her husband, President Jimmy Morales, she explained that he often asks to please pray he would have  “the wisdom of Solomon, the courage of Joshua, and the heart of David.”

One morning, a group from our team was able to visit One One morning, a group from our team was able to visit One More Child’s Malnutrition Center and Daycare that is supported by churches in Florida and the southeast, as well as the First Lady. We saw mothers, infants, and preschool children being educated, cared for, and loved on. We met a doctor, a nutritionist, social workers, nannies, and preschool teachers. We learned of families of many once malnourished children, receiving monthly baskets of food thanks to sponsors in the U.S. I was reminded of just how much can be accomplished when people work together, for the glory of God. 

Capturing this week’s events for One More Child has been a special and unique privilege, and an absolute joy! We are so grateful for this opportunity God gave us, to give back with JTP.  Stay tuned for ways YOU can partner with us in support of One More Child!

Here are a few images from the week:

 

President of One More Child and the Florida Baptist Children’s Home, Dr. Jerry Haag opened up the Conference explaining the goals of partnership with the First Lady in the fight against human trafficking.

 

 

First Lady Patricia Marroquin Argueta de Morales welcomed One More Child’s team into her country with great warmth and hospitality.

 

Our team for the Ant-Trafficking Conference with One More Child Global: Cesar Chahin, Andrew Tattrie, Zach Terry, Jeff Dalrymple, Dr. Jerry Haag, Christi Haag, Christa Hicks, Erika Valdes, Angie Deluna, Katy Martin, and myself.

 

Christa Hicks, Executive Director of Anti-Trafficking for One More Child, explained what makes children and teens vulnerable to trafficking, as well as tools to aid in healing victims of trauma.

 

One of the many precious little ones being helped through the Malnutrition Center One More Child has in Guatemala.