• Great Missions Trips for the Familiy

  • Partners of Hope

  • Other FCI Blogs

  • Archive of Posts

Posts Tagged ‘children in need’

New Gift Registry Up and Running

Wednesday, April 9th, 2014

Children playing with toys at Dorie's Promise - An orphanage in Guatemala City

By Heather Radu –

So many mission teams ask what they can bring to Guatemala that it inspired us to create a gift registry to streamline the giving process. It will enable volunteers and supporters to stay abreast of current needs while simplifying our record-keeping.

Missions Coordinator Naomi Beazley and I came up with the idea last year while helping teams arrange trips. Numerous people asked, “What are some needs at Dorie’s Promise?”

Education Bundle - Elementary $75.00

Education Bundle – Elementary $75.00

Since the situation changes regularly, we often needed to check with Director Alejandra Diaz before calling people back, sometimes on the verge of their trip. We decided that by posting a list on our website, teams could have the latest information at their fingertips.

After a recent “soft” launch, we are informing our network of supporters about this option. Our current list includes seven priorities — totaling nearly $47,000. The most expensive is a Toyota microbus (for $36,000), while the lowest-priced item is a supply of size 2 diapers (for $246).

We are thrilled to announce we have received our first donation of $460 toward a computer lab, which will cost a total of $3,340. A team from Northwest Community Church in Mundelein, Illinois, that visited March 15-22, included the money in a generous gift. It will also buy our children shoes and Christmas presents and three coffeemakers for our staff.

Naturally, we don’t expect someone to provide all the funds for a particular item. We will combine any size donation with others designated for that purpose. If additional gifts are received after we have raised the money for a specific item, we will contact those donors to ask where they prefer we use it.

We are also working on a group registry to facilitate mission projects in the community. The logistics aren’t yet complete, but by early summer we hope to post a listing of needs in Guatemala City.

Girl Bundle - (0-3 months) $50.00

Girl Bundle – (0-3 months) $50.00

This idea stems from similar inquiries from volunteers who wanted to know what kind of help they can offer to Guatemala City residents during their stay.

Through the group registry, they will be able to plan that work in advance. It can be tasks such as putting in bunk beds, pouring a cement floor in someone’s home, or installing a pila (a watering station used to wash clothes and dishes).

On the registry website, you can find lists of other needs at the orphanage — things like appliances, children’s toys, clothing, shoes, health and hygiene items, and educational resources.

This registry will save teams time and the logistical problems of transporting donations, since online gifts will enable our staff to purchase items locally. We hope friends like you are as excited about this new system as we are … to see our gift registry, click here!

Sponsorship Matching Opportunity!

Wednesday, December 4th, 2013

Help us meet the sponsorship match before Dec 31st

Sponsor Brayan at Dorie's Promise

Brayan (Age 13) is 60% Sponsored

What if I told you we are one step away?… We are one step away from fully supporting all of the children at Dorie’s Promise Guatemala through sponsorship.

Over the years, a number of friends have come forward to stand with us to ensure our kids have everything they need to get the best care and upbringing we can provide for them.

But today, we are at a tipping point. Only two of our children are 100 percent sponsored. A handful of our children are between 80 and 90 percent sponsored.

The vast majority of our children are only at the 70 percent level — and some are even below that. We like to say that 30 percent is what we ask God to provide each month. Some months that 30 percent doesn’t come until the very last day. Other months we get a little more, sometimes we get a little less. The right amount is always there to support the children, but to tell you things are not tight would not be the truth.

All that to say: We need some help. And today, I’m thrilled to announce a matching sponsorship opportunity.

When you sponsor today, your sponsorship

will be matched dollar-for-dollar.

A friend of the ministry has seen the great need to get the children of Dorie’s Promise 100 percent sponsored and has challenged us to get this work done.

Our goal before the end of the year is to meet this donor’s specific challenge by seeing 25 sponsorships happen. Please be one of those, OR encourage someone you know to become a sponsor. This is a great opportunity!

Sponsor Dulce through Forevr Changed International

Dulce (Age 1) is 62% Sponsored

Sponsor today and see your sponsorship matched! If you and all of our friends took that single step forward today, we would make miles of progress toward our goal to see every child 100 percent sponsored.

When we do this, it will change everything for them. A fully sponsored home will allow us to plan a more stable future, take in more children, and start working on buying the homes in which we live.

Today, as you read this letter, I would like to ask you to consider sponsoring one or even two or more of the children living at Dorie’s Promise Guatemala with a gift of $35 or $50 each a month.

Sponsoring one of our children provides them so much more than just their day-to-day needs. . It provides them with safety, food, shelter … but most of all it allows them to grow up in a loving environment where they can be all that God intends for them to be.

One of the things we talk to our mission teams about is making sure to be transformational in their giving. Giving food to a poor family is a good and right thing to do! Helping a family with a cement floor is exceptional! But sponsoring a child and being part of that life — helping them grow in the love and knowledge of the Lord — is transformational.

I know we have asked you to sponsor before … I want to ask you again. Please pray about this and ask God to lead you in your giving. As you feel led to give, please visit our sponsorship page online:

Sponsor one of the orphans At Dorie's Promise today

Please consider this today. This matching challenge ends December 31st! Let’s partner together to meet this challenge and secure the future of the children at Dorie’s Promise Guatemala.


Heather Radu

P.S. We are one final, big step away from fully sponsoring our little ones … and we can only make it with you taking that step with us! Please sponsor one of these special little ones today.

Comings and Goings

Saturday, November 9th, 2013

New Child Ulises Castro at Dorie's Promise Guatemala

Ulises Castro (Age 3)

By Arwen McGilvra-

The nature of our ministry is flexible and fluctuating. Therefore, we keep several beds open for foster kids who will be in our care only temporarily. Of course, since these cases are often waiting on the courts, we typically don’t know how long these children will be staying with us. Recently, several new children came to our home, and, at the same time, CNA (the Guatemalan adoption agency) found forever homes for some of our other children. The goodbyes are bittersweet — we grow to love the children in our care and will miss seeing them, but rejoice with them when they find an adoptive family.

New Children:

New child Estrella at Dorie's Promise Guatemala

Estrella Castro (Age 7 mo.)

Estrella Castro

Approx. Age: 7 months

Estrella and her brother Ulises entered our care because their birth mother was negligent. Estrella got sick with an intestinal infection and was admitted to a national hospital. When she came to our home, Dr. Castro evaluated her and found that she has chronic and acute malnutrition.

Ulises Castro

Approx. Age: 3 years

Ulises, Estrella’s older brother, was also removed from the home due to negligence and abuse. When Dr. Castro evaluated him, he had chronic and acute malnutrition as well as severe cavities. He was very small for his age (appearing to be only 1½ years old) as a result of malnutrition. Estrella’s and Ulises’ birth mother is a teenager who hasn’t shown interest in learning to properly care for her children. We will know more at their next hearing.

Maria Rene

Approx. Age: 3 months

Maria was found in the streets by the police. They took her to Minors court, which placed her in our home. She is also very small for her age, appearing to be more like a newborn than a three-month-old. During her examination, chronic and acute malnutrition was evident, as well as lice.


Saying Goodbye:

Sandi with her adoptive familySandi

DOB: 4/25/12

Sandi came to Dorie’s Promise by a court order because the birth mother didn’t want her.

After a several visits with Sandi, CNA granted a Guatemalan family the opportunity to adopt her. They seemed to be very excited to be first-time parents. Recently, CNA requested we meet at their office to give Sandi legally to her new adoptive family. Sandi was barely in the door of the office when she saw her new mother and immediately extended her arms to be held. It’s good to know that she’s made a bond with her adoptive family and that they are willing to love and care for her. We wish Sandi all the love and care she deserves.


DOB: 12/24/08

Angel with his adoptive family.Angel was sent to us by a court transfer order because he was suffering malnutrition in the Government Orphanage. When he arrived at Dorie’s Promise, he looked small and sad. He was declared adoptable this past September.

During three weeks of visiting Angel and getting to know him well, the CNA granted to a Guatemalan family the opportunity to adopt Angel de Dios. He left us very happy and excited to go with his “mom and dad.” We wish him the best and hope he finds in this new family a chance to be loved and cared for as he deserves.


Please join us in praying for these new families, as well as for the adjustments it takes to be successful as an adoptive family. We praise God that there are good people in Guatemala willing to adopt our kids and create new forever families. Also be praying for the health and well-being of the children who have recently come to our home.


*NOTE: International adoptions in Guatemala closed in 2008.

The 50% Club

Thursday, July 18th, 2013

Mario – 50% Sponsored

Sandi – 50% Sponsored

By Arwen McGilvra –

Many friends of our ministry donate to us throughout the year. It’s gifts like these combined with sponsorships that allow us to run our program. However, sometimes we still ask, “Will Dorie’s Promise receive enough additional support this month to meet all of our fixed expenses?

By funding our home 100% through sponsorship, we can be certain that our monthly obligations to care for our children will be met. If we can reach our 100% goal, not only can we be assured in meeting our obligations, we will also be able to expand our ministry to serve even more children!

Sponsors are more than donors – they are part of our team!

We have four children in our home currently at or below 50% sponsored. While our ultimate goal is to have all the children 100% sponsored, we’d love to get these little ones over the 50% hump.

Dulce – Born premature, Dulce is a precious baby girl who has struggled with health issues. Doc has kept a close eye on her growth, and her special mother Myriam prays regularly for her. She is gaining weight, and we have seen improvement in her as she’s learned to babble and move around.

Sandi – A quiet baby who enjoys it when visitors come to her crib. She has a beautiful wide smile and a patient attitude. Which will be helpful as she learns to walk and begins to explore the world around her.

Mario – A tender baby boy whose smile will steal your heart. Premature and abandoned at the hospital by his mother, he has done well at our home.

Valentina – She came to us from the hospital after being left on the streets. She had been a very sick little baby suffering from pneumonia. Because of the love and care she’s had at our home, Valentina has stabilized.


Sponsor Updates Ready

Friday, May 31st, 2013

First of all if you are one of our sponsors we want to say, “Thank you!” You are a part of our team that is integral to what we do. It is essential that as a ministry we are responsible in how we go about funding our home and its growth in order to serve even more children in the years to come.

Sponsors, you can log in now and see the new videos, pictures, art, and written updates.  We hope you enjoy this more personal look at the child(ren) you’ve decided  to sponsor.

Click Here to Login Now

If you are not a sponsor yet will you consider giving just $35 month to help provide for these precious children? Take a moment to view the children living at Dorie’s Promise and see if God lays one of them on your heart. Like Yire Abraham (pictured,) can’t you tell he’s just a bundle of energy? He’s currently 61% sponsored. Or Mirna, one of our older children, she needs just one more sponsor to be 100% sponsored. Valentina is just a small baby and needs sponsors like you to love and care for her. Those are only a handful of the children living at Dorie’s Promise.

Click Here to view them all.

And once again to all our current sponsors we are exceedingly grateful for your faithful support of these precious little ones.

Jack is a Free Spirit

Wednesday, May 15th, 2013

By Arwen McGilvra & Pablo Villagran

I’d like you to meet a free-spirited little six-year-old. Jack is an active little boy living in our home who likes to play tag, sing songs, and go on field trips with our mission teams. He loves pancakes and the colors red and blue. He likes to kiss and hug his teacher and Special Mothers, who say that overall Jack is obedient, sensitive, and loving.

Children come to our home for a variety of reasons — most are sad … tragic, even. But some are puzzling. That’s the case with Jack. He was moved to Dorie’s Promise from a government home: he and another boy there looked so much alike, even had the same name, that they kept being confused with each other. So it was decided to separate them. Jack has been at Dorie’s Promise for almost a year now.

Sometimes when the children come to us, we do not have much information about their past or about the situations in which they lived. When Jack arrived, we were only told that he needed to be transferred from the state orphanage. We attended different hearings in the process, but never learned much about his family.

That recently changed when we were informed that he has family living about 10 hours away … and they want Jack back. Not knowing much about his family leaves us with a lot of questions.

  • What will his life be like with family members he doesn’t know?
  • Will they be able to provide a safe home and good education for him?
  • Will it be difficult for him to adjust to his new life?

In the last hearing, we asked the judge to give us the chance to keep Jack at Dorie’s Promise until he finishes the school year. We are praying for Jack, for his family, and for the decision that will be made in the next hearing.

Above all, we want the children here to be in a safe home with love and care.

While he’s been here, Jack has blossomed into a talkative, outgoing boy who is full of curiosity. He enjoys participating in devotionals. He is a good observer and pays special attention to small details. Jack has a tender heart — which can sometimes lead to temper tantrums, but he is learning to control those outbursts. His special mothers have a song they sing to help him calm down. It’s called Cuando Obedezco, or, I Will Obey.

Cuando obedezco lo que dice Jesucristo
me hago fuerte y crezco al oir su voz
y si el diablo dice no le obedezcas
lo callo le digo obedeceré
Cuando obedezco lo que dice mi papito
me hago fuerte y crezco al oir su voz
y si el diablo dice no le obedezcas
lo callo le digo obedeceré
Cuando obedezco lo que dice mi mamita
me hago fuerte y crezco al oir su voz
y si el diablo dice no le obedezcas
lo callo le digo obedeceré

(or in English)

When I obey what Jesus says
I become strong and grow to hear His voice
and if the devil says not to obey
I will ignore him and I will obey!
When I obey what my daddy says I
become strong and grow to hear his voice
and if the devil says not to obey
I will ignore him and I will obey!
When I obey what my mommy says
I become strong and grow to hear her voice
and if the devil says not to obey
I will ignore him and I will obey!

For the time that Jack is still with us, he needs the support of sponsors. People who have a heart for children like Jack — children who have been forgotten by a wider world. When you sponsor Jack, you are reaching out to an orphan in need.

Dorie’s Promise Guatemala is a place filled with love and care. It is a place where joy is a daily experience, and where orphaned children find safety and security. But most of all, it is a place where children who have never known love can grow up knowing that God loves them no matter what and has a plan for their lives.

Thank you for being part of our family and for caring for Jack!





The Children of House 5

Wednesday, March 13th, 2013

AlexBy Bradley Burck-

When I go to Guatemala the first place I go to visit is House 5 to see the special needs children.  One of the children my wife and I have made it a point to sponsor – his name is Alex.  I also love Efrain and Miguel.

Here's what is special about these children – God LOVES them.  Each one of them is fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14).  And God has a plan for them, and has provided a place for them to call home.

When God commanded the people of Israel as to how they were to treat their neighbors, He said to them:

“Do not deprive the foreigner or the fatherless of justice, or take the cloak of the widow as a pledge. Remember that you were slaves in Egypt and the Lord your God redeemed you from there. That is why I command you to do this.” –Deuteronomy 24:17-18

That command was highlighted even more in James 1:27:

“Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”

MiguelGod loves children and orphans, and has a place in his heart for those who cannot care for themselves.  Much like these special kids at Dorie’s Promise, we were once helpless and sick… but it was because of our sin.  Even so, God had compassion on us in our helplessness, took us in, and gave us a new life full of love and hope through Jesus Christ. 

Being a sponsor is an opportunity to love these kids just like Jesus loves us!  That’s why it’s so incredible to be able to get to know these children…

Alex is a 16-year-old boy with a strong, wonderful personality and a great sense of humor.  Although Alex is one of the healthiest in the group, he has cerebral palsy.  Because of his disease, he has limited ability to move his body intentionally, and is completely dependent on his caregivers for his day-to-day needs.  Even though he can’t speak, he is a sensitive boy with a ready smile.  When he sees his nurse, Mirna Yuman, he laughs and laughs.

Efrain is just as wonderful.  He has been at Dorie’s Promise since he was one year old, and now he is eight!  Although he is developmentally delayed and nearly blind due to eye disease, he is one of the happiest kids you will ever meet.  His favorite things are taking baths and sleeping in—and dessert!

Miguel is another precious little boy who lives in House 5—when you meet him, you quickly find out that he loves to sing!  His favorite time is when we sing worship songs, and loves to be a part of devotionals.  He came to Dorie’s Promise at three months old, and is now five.  He walks, explores, and learns despite a structural defect in his brain that has left him developmentally delayed.  Miguel is a little miracle!

Visiting, knowing, and having the opportunity to sponsor Alex has been an invaluable blessing to my wife and me.  I couldn’t begin to describe it!  I can only invite you to come and meet these kids, and see how precious they are firsthand.  Come and see Alex’s big smile, sing songs with these kids, read to them – you will be forever changed.

God has called us to love little ones just like these, who are helpless and cannot care for themselves.  For that reason, I also want to invite you to consider sponsorship.  These kids have many needs beyond just food, shelter, and love – they need special medical attention to address their complicated needs.

You gotta see these kids!  When you do, you won’t be the same! They will touch your heart in a big way.

Hope in the New Year

Wednesday, January 2nd, 2013





By Pablo Villagran-

Happy 2013! Our staff is brimming with optimism as we enter the new year. This outlook stems from what we have seen God do during the past year and faith that He will lead us into a better future.

“The visits by mission groups were amazing,” says receptionist and office assistant Leslis Barrios. “That was the highlight of 2012."

“God definitely has plans for us. I have faith in Him because in my four years here I have seen amazing miracles. Not only with our budgets, but with our kids. I know God can take care of us.”

I know how she feels. I have seen God’s hand touching our kids, the Special Mothers and other staff members. I trust that He will continue helping the forgotten children of Guatemala.

For me personally, the highlight of 2012 was leading morning devotions for our mission teams. I sensed God using me to reach people with spiritual needs, and who had many questions for God.

I don’t say this with pride, because God deserves all the glory. To help our children, He will use anyone who is willing to be used.

Teacher Claudia Roncal is especially encouraged by eight more children recently receiving scholarships for 2013 to attend the private Christian school, El Shaddai.

Within our ministry, she has also seen a renewed focus on the importance of children.

“More than any difficulties we face in the organization, there is still a bright future,” Claudia says. “The Lord will never abandon the children.”

Maria Jose Ramirez, who oversees legal, financial and maintenance matters, hopes to see God help us identify more Guatemalan families willing to adopt.  NOTE: ONLY GUATEMALAN FAMILIES CAN ADOPT OUR CHILDREN.  GUATEMALA REMAINS CLOSED TO INTERNATIONAL ADOPTIONS.  She was quite excited last summer when six-year-old Elyel got adopted by a local family, since he came here a baby.

Within the organization, Maria has seen many positive changes, such as better-organized houses, faster processing of legal paperwork, and improved financial stability.

“The children always represent our hope for the future,” Maria says. “We are working to help them achieve a better life and, in the end, we will have results.”

Chef Mayra Levon, who is on the front lines of developing healthier menus for residents and staff, saw God opening doors the past year to bless kids in food and medical areas.

“I expect that God will keep opening doors so the kids can learn more and have more opportunities,” Mayra says. “We can have hope for the future in spite of the economic downturn and other challenges because we trust in God.”

Director Alejandra Diaz shares in the optimistic spirit surging through Dorie’s Promise, having repeatedly experienced God’s faithfulness during difficult times.

“What I cannot be sure of is how He is going to move every day,” Alejandra says. “He has special ways of showing us that He is with us. I have no doubt that He will always be with us as we keep doing what we have been called to do: Take care of His little ones.”

If you would like to join this worthwhile mission during 2013, click here for more information.

A Reason to Smile

Wednesday, December 19th, 2012


By Pablo Villagran-

Next week will mark a special Christmas for one of our newest residents, five-year-old Jack Pineda. It will be his first with the Dorie’s Promise family, who he has learned to love since arriving last June.

Jack came to us through a court order after having been sheltered in a government home.

Fortunately, this youngster adapted fairly quickly to his new surroundings. He is a natural extrovert who loves to talk with people and makes friends fast.

We've observed how much happier Jack has been than when he first came here. Now, Jack is always smiling and making jokes with everybody, making him an enjoyable child to have at our home.

Past Christmases weren’t necessarily happy occasions, so Jack’s smile is growing as December 25 draws closer. He is hoping to receive a new ball—although I’m sure he won’t object to other presents.

Jack has many favorites, among them vegetables, beans,  milk and sodas and (like most American kids) food from McDonald’s.

He also likes the color green, and playing soccer, as well as ball tag and visits to Chuck E. Cheese.

One of his Special Mothers, Ericka, says Jack has adjusted well to life at Dorie’s Promise. At first he avoided running and physical activities, but now is eager to exercise, she says. He has improved his eating habits and is now a healthy size and weight.

“He is a very smart child who has good language skills, so it easy to understand him,” Ericka says. “He has done a great job improving his behavior and you can tell that he is happier now.”

Special Mother Eliza says Jack has learned how to share with others and has become very sensitive, loving and obedient. He often makes kind comments to his Special Mothers.

“Like any other child, he sometimes throws tantrums but he calms down when we give him a kiss or hug and then explain to him what he has to do,” Eliza says.

“He enjoys participating in devotionals. He has learned some Bible verses and helps others during worship time. He is very eager to learn more about God.”

Despite this positive news, there is one thing lacking with Jack. He doesn’t have any sponsors. Sponsors are caring individuals who commit to pledges of at least $35 a month. These funds help provide a safe home, education, food, health care and medicines. Most importantly, they provide opportunities for a child’s spiritual development.

However, there is more to sponsorship than giving money. We hope sponsors will develop relationships with their child. This can be done by writing letters, sending e-mails, and other forms of personal interaction—including a personal visit on a mission trip to Guatemala.

If you would like to put an even brighter smile on Jack’s face, click here to learn more about becoming a sponsor.

Help with Education

Friday, December 7th, 2012

We currently have 37 children in our care who are all growing up (so fast!).

Give for their education…

Until this year, we have always had every child enrolled in public school. The education each of them is receiving is below average. Last January, thanks to some special donations, we were able to send three children — Amelia, Jennifer, and Ana — to private Christian school at El Shaddai.

Our staff was amazed at the transformation in the lives of these children throughout the school year. Their grades improved dramatically, their enthusiasm for learning increased, and, most importantly, they were able to be in an environment that helped them grow academically, spiritually, and emotionally.

After seeing the impact, it became clear that we must offer a better education to our children. In order to do that, your help is needed.

I wrote to you about this last month. Thus far, we’ve had a good response, but we’re not there yet. We need to raise $14,700 in order for 12 more children to have the opportunity to receive the education they need and deserve this coming January!

Every gift matters as we work to make sure the children in our care are given an exceptional education.

Thank you again for all your prayers and support. May God richly bless you for all that you do!

God Bless,

Heather Radu

P.S. Give the gift of education to our children this Christmas. It is a gift that will last them a lifetime!



Donate Now