Beyond Our Borders (B.O.B)
This is the eleventh year of active participation by CUMC members in Beyond Our Borders. In June 2003, we began by providing travel support for the Ewell family to make their initial trip to Londrina, and the B.O.B. team has traveled to Londrina since 2004. Over the years, we have provided over $100,000 in support to our partners and the Ewells, plus trips that have been financed entirely by the travelers.
Our primary focus continues to be on the partnerships in Londrina, Brazil, a city of 600,000 people, where we support poor children in the favelas (slums) of that city. Our opportunity is to enrich the lives of the children with better facilities and Christian activities. The spontaneous support of the members of Christ Church has had a great impact on the children. We have engaged our church in this ministry, with hundreds of CUMC members involved in supporting this work in Brazil.
We have had a positive impact on at least 600 children each year, with some estimates reaching 1,000 children helped each year. During the coming years, we intend to enhance the work we have begun with our partners in Londrina. We will expand the Beyond Our Borders concept to include Ukraine and Nicaragua. We will seek innovative ways to provide our services and will look to extend our outreach to better prepare the youth of the world to lead productive lives and become good citizens of their countries.
Sao Jorge, the first crèche (childcare center) that we started to support in 2004 is located in the Sao Jorge favela. The leadership and staff of that crèche provide for the immediate needs and hopes for 120 preschool children and 60 school age children every day. After the children are dropped off at the crèche early in the day, the mothers go into the community to find any possible means to support their children, usually by collecting paper and plastic bottles for recycling. The children are picked up the end of the day. We have provided $10,000 in each of the last three years to support the wonderful work of the staff at that crèche, in addition to helping build a new playground.
For more information on B.O.B, to sponsor a child, and to get involved, visit the B.O.B. website at http://beyond-our-borders.blogspot.com/ or contact CUMC members Ed Harlan ( ) or Jim Anderson ( ).