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It’s hard to believe that it’s been less than two years since we first traveled to Guatemala to dedicate the land for the Solly Ochoch. Since that time in Sepalau there has been a global pandemic, strict travel bans, food shortages, and two very destructive hurricanes.

Honestly, we all felt pretty discouraged in 2020 when it looked like the life-giving plans we’d created with the Humble Village and the people of Sepalau would be put on hold. Yet, somehow the spirit of the workers and villagers has allowed them to overcome seemingly insurmountable odds. I’m humbled by the amount of light that has shone there in some of the darkest of times.

The workers have delivered countless bags of food to quarantined families unable to work or leave their homes. They’ve also sought to identify children in the most dire physical conditions, enrolling those most afflicted in their nutrition program.

A massive garden with vegetables of every kind was also planted early in 2020 and the harvests have been beautiful. A backyard garden might not seem earth-shattering, but when we visited the village in 2019, there was not one home we entered that had anything other than corn and sometimes a bag of rice. To have cabbage and potatoes and beets and other nutrient-rich produce available to eat and plants to start their own gardens is truly life-changing.

Solly Baby Mother's Center at dawn. Look at all those vegetables!

A kitchen was constructed on-site for cooking classes—and even the men are learning, so they can better support the mothers and women in the community, which is especially exciting to see.

Health and nutrition classes are also taught on-site, which have proven to be instrumental in helping improve hygiene, create safer homes, and achieve better health.

The on-site nurse assesses the needs of the mothers and babies there, offering life-saving care, especially to those who are malnourished, a rampant problem in the Sepalau area.

Margarita had hepatitis when pregnant and an underweight child. Thanks to nurse Luvia's visits, she was able to have a much-needed pap test.

Because of your generous donations, we were able to pay for 100(!) roofs to be replaced from the hurricanes last year. Some homes were even rebuilt entirely.

Damage from Hurricane Eta. November 2020.

Rebuilt roof after hurricane damage.

Men carrying the metal laminas to rebuild roofs after the hurricanes.

Newly constructed roof.

On a more personal note, we have to give an update on baby Gerson, who was severely malnourished as a newborn when we met him there in 2019. Quite by accident, I noticed that he had a tongue tie when I was holding him. Gerson’s mother was able to feed him from a dropper until he was able to get the tongue tie operated on. Every photo update we have received of him has felt nothing short of miraculous.

Discovering Gerson's tongue tie in November 2019.

Gerson (right) and his twin brother Jeremias (left) in November 2019.

Gerson (right) and his twin brother Jeremias (left) now.

Thank you, thank you for your continued donations, thoughts, prayers, and care for this project. I have always believed that it would be mothers who would play a lead role in alleviating the suffering of mothers and babies around the world. I know that this is only one mother’s center and Sepalau is a small village and that there is so much more work to do, but just as we do the small things for our babies every day and trust that those small things will help them become great people, I trust that the seemingly small things that this beautiful community does will culminate into great things.

Our 2021 goal is to raise the needed funds of $29,812 to operate the Solly Baby Mothers Center or "Ochoch" this year. 100% of funds donated by Solly Baby will go directly to these projects and local Guatemalan staff who are on the ground working day to day. The Humble Village takes no overhead or administrative costs, as they are all volunteering their time and resources to ensure the donations make the greatest impact possible.

xx,

P.S. Please read below for further details regarding the Ochoch and click to donate here or at checkout.

Solly Baby Mothers Center

AN "OCHOCH" IN THE COMMUNITY OF SEPALAU