This week I am in the Dominican Republic with World Vision. I have been impressed by how hard World Vision works to help communities better themselves and become self-sustaining.
It isn't about giving them fish – it is about teaching them how to fish.
And the difference is remarkable.
We visited a community garden that was run by 15 men and 15 women.
We need to make a difference.
And what a difference that garden has made.
It probably had close to 40 different types of plants in it including various spices, aloe, lettuce and carrots. The group spends at least four hours a day working in the garden.
They sell the produce within the community.
They take some home every Friday to feed their families.
World Vision goes into a community with the intent that within 15 years, the community's situation will have improved enough for World Vision to leave it.
It's about teaching them to fish, I mean, garden.
It's about teaching them to have self-worth.
It's about demonstrating the love of Christ.
Blessed are those who love the poor.
The garden has been such a positive experience that the men and women want to go into other communities and teach the people how to start their own gardens. They dream of going "into the city" to sell their produce. The next garden is also going to farm fish.
Because of a garden, they are dreaming.
Oh, and did I mention, the team of people who run the garden all have children and grandchildren who are sponsored by World Vision?
Child sponsorship is one way you can make a difference in the lives of these people. It helps bring educational opportunities, medical care and meet the needs of families- so they can do things like start a garden.
For a limited time, people who sponsor a child through World Vision while we are on this trip, will receive a limited edition, Faith, Hope, Amor Lisa Leonard necklace. Our prayer is that every time you wear it you will be reminded of the child you sponsor. The necklace was inspired by Corin 13:13 and brings English and Spanish together – just like we are doing in the Dominican Republic. Please help a child today.