As the oldest Kids Alive program in Dominican Republic, ANIJA’s mission of “helping the children of Jarabacoa” is spelled out in its Spanish acronym. It was originally started as a care center almost 30 years ago, and today the full campus includes a Pre-K through 9th grade school, playground, computer lab, and offices. Currently, over 375 needy and vulnerable children have found a place to learn and grow at ANIJA. read more »
When Crystal* came to ANIJA, we were deeply sad about her circumstances. She arrived with broken shoes, inadequate clothing, and always smelling very bad. There were many days when we bathed her at school, and she often showed up just to sleep all day. Eventually we learned that she and her siblings were left alone for days at a time while her mother left to find work in the capital, generally unsavory work. So, it wasn’t a surprise that Crystal rarely spoke and had very limited academic knowledge. We began to work with her gently, offering her the care and acceptance she needed to feel safe.
But Crystal’s whole outlook on life has changed greatly, and we are thankful to see God’s hand at work. She now expresses herself well, is progressing at a consistent rate in her academic studies, and readily asks for forgiveness if she has wronged someone. With the good self-care skills and confidence she has developed, Crystal now has a vision for her future that excites her! Even her mother is making progress, having recently married, caring better for her children, and receiving regular counseling. We provide them with some food since their family resources are minimal, and we are thankful to see positive changes not only in Crystal, but also her family. What a difference it makes when hope breaks in and changes everything!
*name changed to protect privacy
Site Partnership allows for services that reach beyond the basics of what Child Sponsorship provides, supplying resources for trauma training and therapy, nutritionists, social workers, educational counselors, discipleship, and more.
Our students come from the poorest communities and would otherwise not have access to a solid education. Not only do we offer them a quality education including English, computers, and art, but our after-school program provides lunch, tutoring, and extracurricular activities. We are thankful that more than 80% of the students who enter our program graduate from high school, and each one hears daily about the hope found in Jesus.