Visiting volunteers kick off the new year – January & February 2014

Roy's group

Family and friends of Roy & Kathleen Heifrin served as volunteer cruise “sherpas” transporting donations to Cozumel Feb 7.

We’re excited about expanding Friends of Cozumel mission/service efforts in 2014. Although we are not hosting a specific mission project week this winter as we have in past years, we’re fortunate many repeat experienced volunteers and new donors are visiting the island as well as Cozumel residents who want to serve the community. Working together informally we’re stretching the impact throughout the winter versus concentrating on one or two intensive weeks.

FOC is. . .

  • Initiating a NEW scholarship program in 2014 to benefit students in need continuing their education beyond secundaria (high school). Scholarships will also be available to adults who want to learn to read/write, speak English or participate in skill training to enable them to get jobs to support their families.
  • Expanding the School Project to provide 300+ children with school supplies and shoes.
  • Partnering with more groups dedicated to volunteerism. SAIL continues their community partnership and will soon post about their January 24 visit. Three NEW FOC partnerships are: VolunCations (Cruise mission group Dec. 2013); Mission Ships (Cruise mission group March 2014) and Worldwide Christian Scuba Divers Organization (March 2014).
  • Local teens volunteering

    Local teen volunteers Milton, Alex and Nuria (seated) served as Gran Bazar cashiers with FOC leader Ilene Kendrick (with Santa hat).

    • Encouraging past mission volunteers to visit families and conduct informal mission efforts on their own this winter.
    • Involving more local Mexican adults and teens in volunteer opportunities.
    • Recognizing a few organizations and families we’ve supported are becoming self-sustaining (our goal). This allows us to refocus donations and volunteer efforts to those with greater needs. So if you’re wondering why we aren’t posting info about NUAFA or the CAM School for example, it is because these organizations have become more self-sufficient over time with other sources of support.

    Special thanks to Mary White (MN) as well as Mark and Marilyn Freese (MN) who recently traveled to the island and brought donated school supplies. It feels a little bit like Christmas in January each year when the SAIL women’s Bible study group visits. They came loaded down with a HUGE amount of school supplies, children’s shoes, handmade baby blankets, clothing, fabric for sewing classes and much more. We also want to thank Mike and Susan Beech (Cozumel) for donating a door from their home that we could use with another family. This is a great example of “repurposing” something that still has a use for the right home.

    On a personal note . . . We’re very happy to be back on the island enjoying the warm weather after being in the frozen Midwest far too long. Our sincere apologies to individuals and groups whom we were unable respond in a timely manner as we addressed family health issues. We appreciate your understanding and are energized by the enthusiasm of so many people who want to give back to the community. What a GREAT start to the New Year. ~~ Karen and Larry

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