This month the Conrad family celebrated their first year serving as missionaries as part of the Back2Back team. This year has been challenging, from leaving family in the states to coming to a new place to start our lives, to asking ourselves what was the next step to seeing God’s purpose being fulfilled, to meeting the kids from our first children’s home to seeing what they could become.
Before we came to Cancun and became officially part of Back2Back I could tell you some of what Back2Back stands for but now I can describe it. I have seen it and it has impacted my life. Back2Back’s purpose statement is “Care for Today, Hope for Tomorrow.” Since we moved to Cancun I have had the privilege to help achieve the “Care for Today” part, but a week ago I had the opportunity to be part and experience the “Hope for Tomorrow.”
Seven students from the Hope Program in Monterrey, MX came as a group to serve along side of us!
For those that don’t know much about what the Hope Program is, let me tell you a little about it. In most children’s homes in Mexico the kids are only allowed to stay there until they turn 16, after that they are supposed to take care of themselves. Most of them end up in very bad situations like prostitution and jail and the generational chain of poverty never ends. Back2Back started this program to prevent this from happening. We give them the opportunity to live in a family like environment and facilitate their further education, from high school all the way to college. By doing this, the kids have a better chance to become what God had in mind.
When I heard that this group was coming, I could’t wait to see what was going to happen. I wanted to see the kid’s reactions to finding out that this group was full of young adults that grew up in their same situation.
When I met them for the first time and I heard them talk about their expectations for this trip I was filled with hope, hope to know that the kid’s that we serve here in Cancun could have bright futures like these students.
I couldn’t wait for them to go to San Jose Children’s Home and see them interact with the kids. It was a great day, the kids loved the students and the students loved on the kids. They didn’t want to leave even though we had been there for 9 hours doing some hard labor and it was their fifth day of doing hard work. During the debriefing one of the Hope students said that when he was saying bye to Jorge (the only boy at the home), Jorge asked him if he had grown up in a children’s home and the student said yes. Jorge just looked at him and smiled, they understood each other and Jorge was able to see Hope.
The last day that they were here I was able to ask the students about their experience with Back2Back while they were in the children’s homes to make our work in CH San Jose more effective and the one thing that prevailed through their answers was relationships. The one thing that they needed the most was someone to care for them and I am glad to say that thanks to the vision that God has implanted in the hearts of our founders, directors, and Back2Back staff, these kids are growing up with “Care for Today, and Hope for Tomorrow”