Juan, by most missionaries known as Juancito, graduated from high school in May 2020. Juan was born and raised in Cuesta Arena, a small village just outside the city of Santiago, Dominican Republic. His mom, Maria, a single mom, loved church, and especially loved when missionaries visited Cuesta Arena. Juan loved spending time with missionaries who helped him learn his alphabet, reading, math, and even practiced english with him. When Juan was about 8 years old, Maria passed away in the middle of the night, turning his world upside down.
With limited options, Juan moved into his aunt and uncle's home, still in Cuesta Arena. Juan continued his education, with the support of missionaries helping to provide his yearly school uniforms, school supplies, and backpacks. He came to the school each day after school to help younger children with their academics, help pass out clean water to the community, or participate in the tutoring program himself. Unlike many of the children in Cuesta Arena, Juan finished elementary, middle, and eventually traveled to La Canela for high school. As he got older, the community began to relay on Juan with more responsibilities like opening and locking up the school, leading classes with younger kinds, and organize and lead worship. Juan also cared for his grandmother, who recently passed away in April 2021.
After years of watching missionaries build a school in his community, Juan desires to seek an 4 year degree at the university in Civil Engineering. In order to do so, Juan needs to move into the city of Santiago. Kendys, the school's teacher, has offered for Juan to live with her, across the street from the university, UTESA. For $100 a month for tuition, Juan can attend the university and pursue his dream of Civil Engineering. In addition, we are hoping to raise $400 a month to help cover his costs of room and board. There may be additional expenses along the way but for right now we are hoping to raise $5,000 to cover his expenses from April to December 2021. Each semester we will evaluate the cost of room, board, school supplies, and tuition to determine what is needed the next semester. Please help make this dream a possibility for Juan.
This fundraiser is sponsored by Renewed Hope Missions. Renewed Hope Missions works in collaboration with Iglesia Evangelica Dominicana in Santiago, Dominican Republic. Feel free to follow our story of Juan and other children in Cuesta Arena and Santiago on Facebook.
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