Update: October 2, 2021
Food Distribution in Realenga
Update: April 6, 2021
Roberto's Work in Oruro
One particularly practical option is giving food and medical attention in times of need. We are so pleased to partner with Roberto and SERVITIHUM (a local charity in Bolivia) who have received three grants from Viva Bolivia for food and PPE distribution in 2021.
Here are just a few of the photos Roberto has sent from these three events. Leaders like him are making a real difference in their communities, in this case, Oruro, Bolivia. And, they are making God's love real to people who need the hope both physical and spiritual food can provide.
Keep up the great work Roberto!
Update: January 13, 2021
Leaders Share Hope and Gifts at Christmas Time
They also got to hear the Christmas story and the hope that Christmas brings. Enjoy these photos with me and thank you for giving to help make these events possible! Leaders like Ronald and the other members of his church don't grow on trees and they need our support as they make a difference in their communities.
If you would like to help, just leave a comment and I will point you in the right direction. If you would like to do something similar in your community, consider applying for a grant on the Viva Bolivia Web page.
Update: December 17, 2020
Christmas Brings Hope!
This time she delivered gifts from the back of a truck so she could bring the toys and treats directly to the families and help reduce the risk of gathering in a large group. We are so pleased to encourage leaders like Fabiane and her team who are making a real difference! In her report for the activity that took place on December 12, 2020, she was asked about what motivates her as a leader to do these kind of activities.
She responded with these verses from Galatians 6. "Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. For if anyone thinks he is something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself. But let each one test his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone and not in his neighbor."
Such a good reminder for us all during these days. Congratulations Fabiane on a job well done!
Update: June 13, 2020
Covid-19 Response - Food Distributions Continue
Since February, Viva Bolivia has given out 10 such grants. The amounts vary, but in each case, people are being fed and brought the hope that comes from someone showing you love in your time of need. Please consider a special gift to Viva Bolivia to help us make even more grants possible.
Update: May 21, 2020
Covid-19 Response - Church Leaders Reach Out
A few examples include: Pastor Martins who preaches inside a men's prision in Trinidad and Doctor Nunes who has a clinic just outside of Cochabamba and who is helping with medical supplies and PPE in her neighborhood.
In additon, we were also so pleased to be able to partner with the Nueva Jerusalen church in Potosi to help them provide food to some of the most vunerable populations surrounding their church. In fact, they did such a great job we just authorized a second grant. Keep up the good work Alfredo and Pastor Alcaraz! The photos below are from their most recent report.
Thank you for your support and gifts to Viva Bolivia. Together we are making a real difference in supporting these wonderful community leaders!
Update: December 31, 2019
December Grants 2019
In every case, our focus is on the local leader who might be a pastor or doctor or teacher or student. The leaders apply for grants that help them become better leaders in their community and often this means reaching out directly to the communities where they serve. We are so proud to come along side these inspiring leaders and help them as they grow in their professions and reach out to help those in need all around Bolivia!
You can follow along on Facebook by following this link or just check back here from time to time. Enjoy! And, consider joining our support team who make these grants possible. Together we are making a real difference in Bolivia!
Update: June 4, 2019
CIMA Training Camp 2019 -- "Just One"
CIMA has been holding training conferences in Bolivia since 2008. The word “Movida” is a combination of two Spanish words "mover and vidas", translated it means “Moving Lives”. This year's theme was "Solo Uno".
Below are a few photos from this powerful event and you can check out the hyperlinks to learn more about these programs helping to develop Christian leaders in Bolivia and beyond.
Update: March 5, 2019
2018 Year-End Report
During 2018 we gave out 52 grants to 36 different individuals and organizations. The average grant size went up slightly to $137.34 per grant (note that some recipients received more than one grant during the year). We gave to three broad categories during 2018. You can read about them in more detail on our Apply for a Grant page.
We gave to develop and encourage leadership in International Development Programs (8%), Job Preparation and Training (6%) and International Relief Programs (86%). It should also be noted that we helped to provide work for the entire VBPS team by hiring them to distribute our grants in-person from their office in Cochabamba (this cost is not included in the grant giving totals and is around $2400 per year). Their on-the-ground, local and in-person distribution is key to our success in building local leaders.
Thanks to all who gave to make these strategic and powerful grants possible. Let's do even more in 2019! Join us in making a difference by setting up monthly giving today - it's super easy, just click the link below.
Leaders doing good in Bolivia. So much fun!
The first months of the year are always fun for me, because that is when I receive the December reports from our VB supported leaders. Each year Christmas time is one of our busiest grant making times of the year. And, this year was our biggest year yet! We were so pleased to approve18 grants for various leaders and projects during the month of December 2018.
Most were leaders reaching out into their communities. Many were church leaders. Enjoy some of our favorite photos below. Your gifts help empower these leaders to make a positive difference in their communities!
Update: December 6, 2018
Cheering on the Team in Bolivia
1. Friends, family and supporters in the USA and Norway
Together we truly are fulfilling our mission of, "Leadership for Today and
Hope for Tomorrow!"
Update: November 1, 2018
Jehová es mi pastor; nada me
We had lunch together near the center of town and then Fatima and I took a micro (small bus) and a taxi-trufi back to her home. There she showed me the home her daughter has built and the separate space where she lives right next door. She told me about how her daughter had recently hosted 12 young adults from Juventud para Cristo (Youth for Christ) for nearly three months while they served the local community. That is a lot of people for a small house, but what a beautiful impact on the community and on the lives of these young people.
She also introduced me to her two dogs and especially to Shadow, just one month old. We had coffee and we opened with a short familiar prayer, "Jehová es mi pastor; nada me faltará". These words from Psalm 23 have been prayed by missionaries and Bolivian Christians for many years now. They are both a statement of fact and a declaration of faith. "The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want." These are powerful words from a widow who lost her husband, only son and so many others. She has faced countless struggles physically and financially and yet she continues to serve her Lord. Her example is a testimony and a challenge to me.
I asked her how many missionaries, MKs and other she has taught over the years. Now approaching 90 years old with hearing and eye sight failing, she is no longer taking on students, but for 50+ years she taught, served and furthered the Good News in Bolivia. I said, "Was it hundreds or thousands," . . . she has lost count. But she did pull out a shoe box of photos and letters (one of many) showing how her past students had stayed in contact. She smiled as she shared story after story.
I suppose Fatima might be tempted to think she is forgotten, living far away from the city center with the busyness of life seeming to pass her by, but this is not the case. Her work, faith and ministry are carried on in people like myself and Karin, the Torre family who introduced us to her and many more.
Today we at Viva Bolivia salute Fatima! May we live up to her quiet, powerful and enduring faith and be an example to those we train, lead and empower in this beautiful country of Bolivia.
Update: September 14, 2018
Campamento de Sobrevivencia
Isaac applied for a leadership development grant from Viva Bolivia and we were pleased to join his team! The camp was held in the community of Esteban Arce, near Villa Tunari. Everyone did their part: The teens chipped in, Isaac volunteered his time, the church in Esteban Arce provided meals and lodging and Viva Bolivia helped cover the cost of transportation. Approximately 24 young people participated in the three day camp.
Keep up the good work Isaac! We at Viva Bolivia are so pleased to be on your team.
Update: June 30, 2018
Calera Grande in Mizque
A group of volunteers from the church set out on the long journey by bus. When they arrive on June 30th (Saturday) they put on two dramas for the community and on Sunday they held services in the local church. They preformed music and played games with the children from the community. The church is unstaffed and only occasionally meets because there is no pastor in the community. After the service they provided a meal for around 100 people and handed out school kits for the school aged children.
Christian asked us to help cover some of the cost of the trip, so we partnered with CIC and the youth to help make this even possible. We are so pleased to stand with leaders like Christian and Ruban Mamani who are making a real difference in the lives of so many in Bolivia!
Update: March 24, 2018
BAM in La Paz
A few years back Juan Jose, together with some local area businesses, formed a group called: Empresarios Cristianos Bolivia (ECB) to encourage each other in a similar vein. They get together to share ideas, bring in speakers and support each other. You can check out their Web site at: http://www.ecbolivia.com/
Their group (ECB) was invited to send a representative to the national conference of BAM leaders in La Paz. Alessandro volunteered and Viva Bolivia was please to provide a small grant to help him be able to attend the conference and represent ECB on a national level. Alessandro brought the books in the second photo back with him to share with the group.
Update: February 18, 2018
Flooding in Tiquipaya
So who steps in to help? Maria Elena has worked at VBPS SRL for a number of years and her church was on the ground helping to provide food and clean-up assistance. Her pastor put out the word that they needed some emergency funding and Viva Bolivia was pleased to help with a small grant to support MarĂa Elena's efforts. We are so proud of her, her church and the local community for stepping up and helping those who have lost so much during this year's flooding. Thank you to those who gave and made this grant possible!
Update: February 15, 2018
Grants update: 2017 Year-End Review
Sixty-seven grants (14 more than last year) were given to 41 different individuals and organizations. The average grant size was down slightly to $116.91 (note that some recipients received more than one grant during the year). We gave to three broad categories during 2017. You can read about them in more detail on our Apply for a Grant page.
We gave to develop and encourage leadership in International Development Programs (34%), Job Preparation and Training (9%) and International Relief Programs (57%). It should also be noted that we also helped provide work for the entire VBPS team by hiring them to distribute our grants in-person from their office in Cochabamba (this cost is not included in the grant giving totals and is around $2200 per year). Their on-the-ground, local and in-person distribution is key to our success in building local leaders. Thanks to all who gave to make these strategic and powerful grants possible. Let's do even more in 2018! Join us in making a difference by setting up monthly giving today - it's super easy, just click the link below.
Update: December 30, 2017
Christmas is a Time for Giving
Celebrating Danely's Graduation!
Danely loves dance and is hoping to study ballet at University. Viva Bolivia no longer offers these type of long-term educational grants, but Danely was grandfathered-in, as long as she continued to make good progress. VB supporters have helped her with partial tuition and fees since fourth grade.
We are so pleased to have played a small part in helping her become the educated, talented young woman she is today. And we are looking forward to her leadership role in the community in the years to come. Young people like Danely and her classmates give us hope for the future. Way to go Danely! We are cheering for you.
Fresh Veggies in the High Mountian
The community is located at 11,500 feet above sea level and is about 145 kilometers outside of La Paz. One need the community has is for fresh vegetables. They are able to grow potatoes and onions, but leafy veggies need a warmer and more protected enviroment than is available in this environment. Nelson (who happens to be trained in agronomy) came up with the idea of an adobe greenhouse. The community members where excited and the school offered some land where the greenhouse could be built. Together with teachers, administrators and the local community, they did it!
Viva Bolivia was pleased to provide a grant to help cover the initial seeds and some building supplies to help make the project possible. In late November we got the latest update. The pictures below say it all. Way to go Nelson! We are celebrating with you and the entire community of Ispaya Este.
Update: May 31, 2017
CIC Awana Youth Leaders Retreat
Update: March 8, 2017
Grants update: 2016 Year-End Review
Fifty-three grants (10 more than last year) were given to 35 different individuals and organizations. The average grant size was up slightly to $132.98 (note that some recipients received more than one grant during the year). We gave to three broad categories during 2016. You can read about them in more detail on our Apply for a Grant page.
We gave to inspire and encourage leadership in International Development Programs (30%), Job Preparation and Training (1%) and International Relief Programs (68%). It should also be noted that we also helped provide work for the entire VBPS team by hiring them to distribute our grants in person from their office in Cochabamba. This on-the-ground, local and in-person distribution is key to our success in building leaders. Thanks to all who gave to make these strategic and powerful grants possible. Let's do even more in 2017! Consider a gift today.
Update: December 16, 2016
The Life Changing Power of Musicals We are celebrating with JACU and all the volunteers (leaders), parents
and young people involved in this program. Their focus is to use artistic
forms (like plays and dance) to communicate good messages.
We are celebrating with JACU and all the volunteers (leaders), parents and young people involved in this program. Their focus is to use artistic forms (like plays and dance) to communicate good messages.
This play (a musical) was put on in La Paz and encouraged young people
to treat each other with respect and love and to appreciate the differences
in each other, rather than attacking or teasing those differences.
This play (a musical) was put on in La Paz and encouraged young people to treat each other with respect and love and to appreciate the differences in each other, rather than attacking or teasing those differences.
The theme of the evening was bullying, which is something young people
face in school and on the streets - especially in the poorer, inner-city
neighborhoods. These kids were from El Alto and La Paz. Viva Bolivia gave a
$200 grant to help make this possible.
The theme of the evening was bullying, which is something young people face in school and on the streets - especially in the poorer, inner-city neighborhoods. These kids were from El Alto and La Paz. Viva Bolivia gave a $200 grant to help make this possible. Thank you!
Update: December 13, 2016
Christmas Came Early
This is thanks to a grant from Viva Bolivia and our local leader, Nelson from SIAB. These students receive their most important meal of the day at school. Parents and teachers were providing the food, but needed tables, chairs, cups, bowls, spoons, forks . . . for their lunch room. We are so pleased to be able to help. Thank you to the many VB supporters who made this grant possible.
Why not consider a gift to help us make more grants like this one? It is amazing what we can do with only $500 and an inspired leader like Nelson. Thank you!
Update: October 23, 2016
A Visit to Bolivia
First $10K for FREE - Online Giving Made Easy!
Update: March 1, 2016
Grants update: 2015 Year-End Review
Forty-three grants were given to 30 different individuals and organizations. The average grant size was $100.44 (some recipients received more than one grant during the year). We gave to two broad categories in 2015. You can read about them in more detail on our Apply for a Grant page. We gave to help and encourage leadership in International Development Programs (46%) and International Relief Programs (54%). Thanks to all who gave to make these strategic and powerful grants possible!
Update: December 14, 2015
Christmas is a Time for Giving (donate)
Camps Change Lives
Youth for Christ
Update: July 10, 2015
The Power of Clean Water
Gonzalo is working on a shoestring budget and reached out to VB for help in the process of getting BOL-CAN established. In the meantime, Gonzalo continues to host teams from the US who help with water projects and to coordinate efforts in the villages and towns where Dale started the work. This past May he hosted a team from Cedarville who came to help with training and development. We are pleased to be a part of their team as they work to bring clean water, training about hygiene and truth from God's word to remote villages in Bolivia. And we are excited to see Gonzalo develop as a leader in this critical area of need.
Update: March 27, 2015
Sewing up a Storm of Hope
This past year we again partnered with SIAB. This year our project focused on job skills training in the textile industry. We helped by making a grant for new equipment (sewing machines). The school provided the location and teachers. SIAB purchased the equipment and coordinated with parents and local officials to make it all happen.
At the end of last school year they celebrated with an exposition of some of the products that the student made using their new equipment. Nelson sent a detailed report with 20+ photos of the delivery of the equipment and the project in process. Enjoy a few of our favorite photos below.
Update: February 23, 2015
Grants update: 2014 Year-End Review
Update: February 12, 2015
Christmas 2014 - Thank You!
Children were given gifts and those living on the streets were fed. Families celebrated together and many experienced Christmas in a special way. Thank you for supporting this powerful opportunity to help build up local leaders and support the local communities in and around Cochabamba through giving and encouragement. A few of our favorite photos are below. Enjoy!
Casa de Amor Celebrates 10 Years!
This past year, Jennifer and her team celebrated their 10th year and were recognized by local officials and the local news. Viva Bolivia was please to help with a small grant to help cover some of the costs of getting the word out and encouraging this powerful ministry that helps those who truly can't help themselves. If you are ever in Cochabamba, be sure to ask for a tour of one of these homes. Truly they provide Homes of Love for children in need. You can meet their leadership team by visiting their Web site.
Update: December 18, 2014
Christmas 2014 - Crowdrise Holiday
Update: November 24, 2014
Danely Scholarship Update
This special school provides additional education in terms of music and dance. The addition of the Arts to traditional education provides for more time in school and also helps young adults to develop skills that would otherwise not be a part of their elementary and high school education.
During Jonathan's recent trip to Bolivia he was able to catch up with Danely and have lunch with her family. Here are a few photos from our time together. Danely is on the left in these photos. Included are her mom (Roxana) and sister (Alee). We are so proud of Dane and can hardly wait to see what the future holds for her!
Bolivia Trip 2014
Cochabamba International Church
Update: June 9, 2014
Staying Sharp - Tax and Accounting
Leadership Camp 2014
Six guest speakers including Pastor Isaac Quino, Efrain Paredes, Elizabeth Quispe, Pastor Mario Cabezas, Pastor Ivan Delgado and River Claure presented five training sessions to the group. Others led a number of instructional games and prepared the food. María Elena reports that a good time of encouragement, fun and learning was had by all.
Update: March 22, 2014
Flooding in Bolivia and How One
Church is Helping
One of the ways Viva Bolivia likes to help in times of difficulty is to support local leaders. This year many organizations, churches and individuals rallied to bring aid, including one of our favorites, Mano a Mano.
Pastor Centellas and about 20 members of the Abundant Life Church in Cochabamba also wanted to help. They had contact with some particularly hard hit areas of the Yuquis, in Ibiricuate and in Chimore. They asked VB if we would help with a small grant to purchase food, medical supplies, clothes and other items for families who were hurt by the recent flooding. In all they were able to help about 30 families (around 150 people) during this difficult time. We are so pleased to encourage this type of leadership in the community. Way to go Pastor! The photos below were sent to us after the team got back from the trip and include team members from the church and some of the distribution of the items they brought to support these communities.
Update: January 28, 2014
Grants update: 2013 Year-End Review
Update: January 23, 2014
Congratulations Alee. This is just
Viva Bolivia has helped to sponsor Alexandra's education at the Laredo Institute in Cochabamba for a number of years (since about fourth grade). What a pleasure to see her graduate from this special school! Students at the Laredo Institute not only learn the basics but also have the opportunity to study music and the arts. Alee has become a smart and graceful young woman who is also a powerful ballet dancer. She even had the opportunity to travel to Mexico to represent her school there and preform at a number of special venues.
Their class theme was, "Aqui no se acaba" which loosely translates to, "This is just the beginning." And that is how we feel about Alee. We are so proud of her and her family. This has not been an easy journey and there are still many challenges ahead, but this is just the beginning. Thank you for helping to build a strong foundation for this budding leader. Your giving and support have made her education possible and she is such a great result! We are celebrating with their family and looking forward to seeing just what the future holds for Alee.
Holiday Challenge - Thank You!
Or, see an overview of all the participants at:
The Doctor Visits Asunta
On a side note, some of you may remember this community from our very first Viva Bolivia video. The shots from the river with the men fishing using bow and arrow are taken from the river that flows alongside this community. You can watch the video again by visiting our Facebook page (scroll down to the bottom and look for the video entitled: Introduction to Viva Bolivia).
The Power of Fresh Bread
The small rural K-12 school is located just outside the city of Oruro, Bolivia. The school's name is Paria. Nelson worked with administrators, teachers and parents to prepare a location, purchase a bread oven and other supplies and set up the program. Now children in this school are baking their own bread! Through this project they learn culinary and small business skills, and get to enjoy fresh, hot bread -- a special treat in the cold, high altitude of more than 11,000 feet above sea-level.
Below are a few photos from the school and a copy of the letter we received from the administrators and teachers involved with the project. We love projects like this that build up various leaders. From Nelson with SIAB to the local teachers and administrators in this school to the parents who got involved to help make this a reality . . . Not to mention the students who will benefit from the project for years to come! A win-win-win! Your gifts to VB help make grants like this possible. Check out our special Christmas giving challenge where you can join in the fun: www.crowdrise.com/vivabolivia-hc.
Update: November 06, 2013
Celebrating Valle Hermoso
The gathering in Santa Cruz at the Buganvillas hotel marked a milestone. Each of the children had been reintegrated with some member of their family (parents where possible, grandparents and aunts and uncles in other cases). Follow-up meetings at each of their homes have been ongoing this past year led by the local team (Margareta, Lilibeth and Ines). The time in Santa Cruz was scheduled to bring all the children (minus just a few) and the leadership from Norway and Bolivia together to review how things are going and to plan for the future.
While the children are now in the legal care of their family members, the local team will continue to be available to them for the next few years to come. Additional funds are being set aside to help many of the children with education and career training.
I am so proud to report that most children seem to be excelling in this new situation. For all of them there are real challenges ahead . . . and for some these challenges seem quite daunting. However, they all know that they have a "family" they can reach out to in Bolivia, Norway and even in the United States.
Update: October 31, 2013
Saturday Morning Staff Meetings
Update: October 22, 2013
Betania Children's Home Update
A New Office for Roxana
Update: October 18, 2013
Update: July 19, 2013
During our last trip to Bolivia we visited Abelina and her baby Ruth! Today they live in Santa Cruz with her sister. Abelina works as a Beautician doing manicures, pedicures and hair styling.
Grants Update: 2013 Mid-Year Review
Update: March 29, 2013
Alfa y Omega
Rolando's hand was recently injured in a serious wood working injury (while repairing some of their instruments). The cost of the doctor's bills were high and although the clinic discounted the cost nearly fifty-percent still there was a heavy burden on the family. Viva Bolivia was happy to be able to help with a small grant to cover some of these costs. If you would like to help with an additional gift, please contact: [email protected].
Update: March 27, 2013
The days were full of team building activities, fellowship, seminars, eating and playing together and two nights even went on beyond mid-night. We are so pleased to be able to support leaders like Maria as she works to encourage youth in Bolivia in their spiritual and moral life and in their relationships and skills as future leaders. Keep up the good work Maria Elena!
Update: January 18, 2013
When the Doctor Comes to Town
Approximately 150 people were in attendance at each clinic in each village. The children are always particularly interested in the Bolivian Doctor driving up from the big city of Cochabamba in his 1970's Land Cruiser.
We have used strategic grants to encourage Dr. Gareca for a number of years and continue to be encouraged by the good work he is doing. Keep up the good work, Doctor!
Viva Bolivia is a blessing for many leaders who follow the way of Jesus
Christmas in Alto Cochabamba
Celebrating 2012 as a Team
Update: December 5, 2012
Senior de Santiago Elementary School
This year's classes just finished up and Rosmery (their teacher) made some treats and invited Viva Bolivia to celebrate with her class. This year she focused on language and math. The photos below are from that celebration. Representatives from the staff, administration and the parents were all present to celebrate the kids achievements and each child received a small gift from Viva Bolivia. Juan Jose represented VB at the celebration.
Camp Pocoata in PotosĂ
Update: November 18, 2012
Valle Hermoso Children's Home
Roxana's Newly Minted Law License
The Next Step Toward Sustainability
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