Latin America & Caribbean Regional Update Fall 2019
The need is great in every single community we work, but the opportunity is also great – for breakthrough, life-giving, sustainable solutions. The pathway is not always clear nor is it straight, but God has given us a powerful and rapidly growing network of people (His body) that daily stands and willingly steps into the gap to respond. The key to success rests in excellent LCIs (our local partners), of which we have more than 20 across the region, connected to highly engaged BA teams (our volunteer network), of which we have an abundance from across the Americas. But with such a high potential network, excellent service is critical.
Our LCIs serve emerging business owners in their communities who in turn serve their communities. Our BAs serve our LCIs in alignment with their shared vision. And we (PW staff) serve them both. All this serving leads to outsized Kingdom impact.
Though, if I’m honest, a cascading line of serving is not always easy. We constantly need to check our egos and desires and remind ourselves of the One who has called us and who we all serve. It’s only in Him that any of these audacious plans and goals will ever succeed. But God has been good to us – we daily see Glimpses of Abundance from across the region – and boy has He built an amazing family of people. There’s no one I’d rather have on my team.
Thank you for being part of this team and for rejoicing with me as you read through this glimpse of the work and people in this outstanding network.
Spread across two island nations, our Caribbean network is moving quickly toward new horizons, though in very different contexts. With a newly expanded partnership team and a newly minted strategic plan, the team in Trinidad and Tobago is gearing up to take on the structural limitations that keep small business owners from prospering on the two-island nation with an eye on improved access to capital and expanded market access. Keep an eye out for big news from these innovative Christian leaders in the months ahead.
Meanwhile, our Haitian network has been navigating one of the most challenging 18-month periods of the last decade. A protracted political crisis is fostering everything from social discontent, to a fuel crisis, to a lack of investment, to a decrease in economic activity, highly restricted energy distribution, outsized inflation, and an escalating wave of gang violence. This is a costly and difficult environment for even the most well resourced of groups. Imagine the impact on people and communities that already struggle to access the basics.
Even so, during this time our Haitian partners exemplified each of our core values. They embraced the calling God gave them during very difficult circumstances. God calls each of us to foster flourishing life-giving communities wherever we might be and that is exactly what our partners are doing. They have pressed ahead and continue to help their neighbors. Many of their networks actually expanded. Their resiliency reminds me of our commitment to never give up. Adversity has certainly led to innovative strategies and opportunities we had not previously seen. Some give us hope for even greater impact. Rather than throwing in the towel or heading for the hills, our partners are leaning in walking alongside one another, reaching out, supporting and holding each other accountable. And that’s where I see exceptional service – as we serve one another, in partnership, our impact and service toward the emerging small business owners in each Haitian network deepens. And quite frankly, all of this is contagious. Amid a crisis that is hard for me to fathom, God’s invitation to join Him and the response of His people is contagious.
On behalf of these outstanding leaders, thank you for your partnership in this ministry.
Regional Director, Latin America and Caribbean