Timothy Project: Middle School Returns to Juarez, Mexico
Every spring Cherry Hills Christian Middle School (CHCMS) takes a week out of classroom learning for a different kind of learning, real-world, hands-on serving communities in need. Some local, some states away and this year, after several years to our southern neighbor, Mexico.
Gary Babb, a CHCMS teacher, is leading the group of students, parent chaperones and teachers to an orphanage outside Juarez.
Our school, Cherry Hills Christian Middle School, has been focused on service outreach for the past 20 years. We began traveling to Juarez Mexico in 2000 to build homes with an organization called Missions Ministries. The impact on the students, staff, and chaperones was profound in so many ways. Unfortunately, the drug wars escalated in 2010-2014 and our church and school made the decision to suspend trips to Juarez until the situation became more stable.
Stability has returned to the area and school administration has deemed it safe enough to send students back for this mission week. The students will be serving in an orphanage familiar to the CHCMS staff. Babb shares his personal connection with Arbol de Vida.
Two teachers from our school, Nate and Berenice Schrimp served as the on-site directors at Arbol de Vida for over two years prior to Nate becoming a full-time teacher at Cherry Hills Christian Middle School. After coming to CHCMS, Nate began to take other teachers and their families to Juarez to build relationships with the staff and students there. We have continued to travel to Arbol de Vida for the past six years now and continue to connect with staff and students through the year. Our annual trips at Thanksgiving have been a highlight for my family and many others from CHCMS. Our main focus is always to build relationships based on Jesus Christ. We have all been blessed by the way Jesus has used the staff and children at Arbol de Vida to see life from a very different perspective. To date, at least eight teachers and our families have traveled to Arbol de Vida and we are hoping to have several more join us for Thanksgiving 2018.
It will be a different, yet exciting, experience to take a few dozen middle school students to Arbol de Vida than the usual Thanksgiving family trips. The focus on this trip will be manual labor in the orchards that have recently been damaged in harsh weather conditions. When the students will not be pulling out dead trees, they will have the opportunity to play soccer with the children of Arbol de Vida.
Over the past 20 years traveling to Juarez, one of the highlights of each trip is always the soccer games we play with the children in the communities. Whether we are playing in the streets of the neighborhoods or on the field at Arbol de Vida, futbol (soccer) is a great way to connect with the children there. One year we played a game with old rags wrapped in plastic and tape. The result was still the same: lots of sweat, smiles and laughter, says Babb.
To support Timothy Project: Middle School Returns to Juarez, Mexico or future Timothy Project ventures please donate through PushPay — simply select Timothy Project from the selectable funds to contribute to. Your financial gift helps us purchase new soccer equipment, sponsor an individual or organization in an outreach effort, and to cover associated costs of providing Bibles, soccer equipment, and other outreach tools locally and around the world!