Reaching Into Darkness
The work that TerraMica has chosen to set its hands to reaches deep into the dark recesses of life. People with immeasurable value living in physical and emotional pain, hunger, and poverty. There is a tremendous amount of work that goes on behind the scenes before we begin the heavy lifting inside community development.
TerraMica’s field research staff are required to go through professional training in human engagement and relational development before setting foot into a village or community racked by poverty. The stories that are documented and recovered from the field help position us with more intimate working knowledge as we then begin to walk alongside families in need.
Stories from the field tug at our hearts and push us forward in providing a pathway to greater emotional, physical, and spiritual health. Here is one such story …
Maria was orphaned at a very early age in rural Honduras. She was sent to live with extended family in another valley not far from her birthplace. Her earliest memories living with her new family are painful and the empty look on her face disclose decades of survival on the edge of hopelessness. Stripped naked and beaten regularly in front of her cousins etched deep emotional scars, as well as suffering the loss of feeling any kind of value or sense of belonging. Because she was an orphan, she was denied the opportunity to attend school, so at the farm she stayed, day in and day out. At the tender age of 13, she was “stolen” to become the woman of a 19-year-old farm boy. By 14, she had the first of 13 children over the next 30 years. At the age of 16, her uncle was brutally hacked to death in front her by a group of drunk men. The birth of a grandson to her second eldest daughter, who is mentally handicapped, was the result of the girl being raped by a village member. Because of the stigma of the grandson’s mother being handicapped, when the boy attended school for the first time he was targeted with a barrage of rocks from the other children and then was denied entrance to school. The cycle of pain and darkness flows down to each generation for those living in poverty throughout developing countries. Sadly, Maria’s story is not all that unique.
But where darkness resides, the opportunity for light and Truth exists, and this is where our My Healthy Home program sets out to work. Maria and many of her family will begin attending classes over six months, with curriculum specially designed to begin creating the awareness of what it means to have a healthy life emotionally, physically, and spiritually. They will be equipped with tools to begin practicing with each other and their neighbors. During those six months, TerraMica will begin the work to transform her house into a physically healthy environment. Her dirt floor will become a cement floor. Her thatched roof will become a roof made of steel. She will have a water reservoir built on her small farm and a permanent latrine built close to the house.
Planting the seed of God’s Truth about how much He loves His people, His creation, and cultivating God’s Hope in their hearts is serious work. This is where you can find the staff and volunteers of TerraMica!