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The Life Untravelled: Mexico

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Hi! We are the Bueckert family. In the fall of 2014 (November 2014-May 2015), we pressed "pause" on our life, sold a whole bunch of our possessions, rented our house, and moved down to Mazatlan, Mexico for six months. We commited ourselves to volunteer work with Vineyard Ministries of Central Mexico, based in Mazatlan. You can read about that trip on our blog: Life Untravelled

Vineyard Ministries focuses on reaching the poor and neglected children in the slums on the outskirts of the city. Their goal is to deliver a holistic program to reach these children by feeding their body, mind, and spirit. They do this through programs run out of their established Community Centers of Hope, and through their Child Sponsorship Program .

Our main volunteer role with this organization has been in the oversight, administration and digitization of the sponsorship program. For instance, we have created a website to promote the sponsorhip program, and are currently in the process of installing a software solution to manange the growing number of child sponsorships. Our volunteer role has continued even after departing Mazatlan in May, approaching that of a part time job (up to 20 hours a week).

In January of 2016 (mid January - end of March), we will be returning as a family to Mazatlan to work alongside our fellow volunteers and Mexican nationals that work together to make a differnce in the lives of these marganilzed children. We are hoping for support for people like you for expenses like:
- Airfare (planning to book by Dec 1st)
- Insurance
- Accomodations (planning to book by Dec 1st)
- Living expenses (i.e. groceries)
- School supplies (we will be home schooling the kids)
- To offset home expenses in Canada in case we cannot find a short-term rental for our home. 

Our objectives for this year's trip are:
1. Adminstration of both Child Sponsorship Programs [Sponsorship program and Scholarship program](Darryl)
2. Design the front entry/lobby of the Vineyard building in Mazatlan to serve as both a functional space for tourists (free phones, computer, charging stations, etc) AND for promoting the work that they do in the community. (Jodi)
3. Bi-weekly "shifts" as host for in the lobby for tourists. (Jodi & Kids)
4. Weekly involvement (games, feeding, etc) with one community center of hope. (Family)
4. Creating and selling Rainbow Loom as a fundraising tool for the feeding program. (Emily)
5. Planning & assisting in getting the Child Sponsorhip programs up and running in  four other cities in Central Mexico that the Vineyard oversees.
6. Planning & Executing a complete overhaul of the main website for the Vineyard.
7. Creation of a new website to promote the Canadian society that fundraises to support the work done by the Vineyard.
8. Shooting promotional photos and videos.
9. Orthotic/Bracing work as needed.

We are including our children in this process as they also have a lot to give, and to learn. They are getting to see what poverty and generosity look like, for real. They are learning to give of what they have to support children just like them. A great example of this happened on the last trip. Our daughter decided she wanted to fundraise for feeding children. She created and sold her Rainbow Loom creations to the tune of about 2500 meals. Simply amazing! (and a proud parent moment for sure)

While we were able to fund most of our last trip from money we had saved and by selling a whole bunch of possessions, this time around we are not in that same position. There is not much left to sell, and we are both self-employed and it has been challenging for us restart our businesses after being away for so long. We had several people donate for our expenses last time, and we were so grateful for that.

This time around we will essentially be reliant on the generosity of those around us, basically putting us in a near similar position to the very families we are going to help. I have heard from several of the people we have reached that they were so grateful and amazed that someone out there thought enough of them to give some money or time to help them. Now it is our turn to share the same experience; we will be grateful for anyone who thinks enough of what we are doing to partner with us by donating to our fund.

Thank you SO MUCH for reading this and considering partnering with us!

Darryl, Jodi, Emily & Ben Bueckert

P.S. We set up this GoFundMe page for those of you who aren't located near us, or where sending a cheque would be difficult. If at all possible, sending money directly is ideal to avoid the fees associated with GoFundMe and WePay. Thanks!


Darryl Bueckert
Langley, BC
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