By Mike Tenbusch | October 07, 2022

When she was a young girl, Yessenia was forced by the conditions surrounding her to work in the garbage dump in El Ocotillo, outside San Pedro Sula, Honduras, to pull out as much plastic and cardboard as she could from the teeming garbage piles each day, and sometimes at night too.  She went to the dump with her brother after their older sister passed away, leaving three young children behind.  Yesenia and her brother were only children themselves, providing for the needs of their orphaned nephews and niece.
 
Life changed for Yessenia four years ago when she received a holistic scholarship from us because of the generosity of people like you.  Her family began receiving a monthly food basket, her school fees and tuition were covered, and she never had to go back to work in the dump again.  She’s in 12th grade now and recently began an internship in human resources at a recycling company, but soccer has always been her love. 
 
From a very young age, Yessenia and her friends would play in an alley using stones for goal posts.  In high school, she played for a team out of El Ocotillo and soon teams across the city were taking notice of her unique talent.
 
Yesterday, Yessenia achieved what she calls “her most cherished dream.”  She was asked to join the national women’s soccer team for Honduras!  She is now practicing with her new team at the San Pedro Sula Olympic Stadium and is so proud for the chance to represent Honduras against other nations.

And Yessenia is not the only IntSam athlete achieving greatness.  On Saturday, Christian, a 15-year-old IntSam scholar in Nicaragua took second place in the 1500 meters in a national track race. 

Meanwhile, back in Ethiopia, Mihretu recently ran a 43.55 15K race at a blazing 4.43 mile pace over 9.3 miles.

Lest you think that we are all about sports, seventeen of our scholarship students are currently studying to become doctors and nurses, like Shanique in Jamaica, below, on her first day of nursing school last month.

We are not about sports or about medicine.  We are about helping our scholars discover the calling on their lives and giving them the tools to achieve it.
 
One life-giving ingredient that Yessenia, Christian, Mihretu and Shanique all share is access to fresh and clean water at home.  Tragically, our scholars in the Buen Samaritano community of Tegucigalpa do not, and we are committed to fixing this.  We have an incredible team of leaders in Tegucigalpa and some of the most resilient and selfless young people I’ve ever met.  But their physical health is challenged daily, and their burdens are complicated exponentially, by a lack of access to water.
 
Please prayerfully consider giving an exceptional gift this month to make water a reality soon for them, and let’s enjoy seeing the cherished dreams they accomplish in the years to follow as a result.

Team Ethiopia Hits the Race Track!

Our team in Ethiopia ran their IntSam Global 5K last weekend, and they challenged the other four partner organizations working in the Kore community to a race in the 5K water-bottle relay.  Much to our chagrin, they only managed a third-place finish. 

“You win some and you lose some.” Coach Selam said.  “The other teams, they had security guards who were very fast!  We tried to get Mirhetu to run, but he refused, saying it wouldn’t be fair.” 
 
As of now, Team Ethiopia has raised $1,550 toward their goal of $5,000 to help bring water to Honduras, as others did for them two years ago.  Please click below to support their team or start your own.

A Mother’s Touch

By Mike Tenbusch | November 18, 2022 What would your life be like if you were never able to see your mother in person?  If phone calls were the only way you could speak with her, and you had no recollection of her hugs or touch? On my most recent trip to Honduras, I...

Lester’s Words

By Mike Tenbusch | November 04, 2022 Yesterday, I ran my third IntSam Global 5K in as many weeks.  This time it was with our scholars in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, along with a powerful team of new friends from Grace Community Church in Detroit.  While recovering after...

Samaritans for Life

By Mike Tenbusch | October 21, 2022 When we lined up to run the Great IntSam 5K in San Pedro Sula last week, I knew I could take at least half of the 40 or so kids lined up around me.  Sure, it felt like 110 degrees, but they had to run in the same heat too.  I had...