It seems like just yesterday that Archie Crenshaw, Joe Glenn and I were pulling a van over a muddy mountain trail in rural Honduras trying to get to the Tegucigalpa airport for our flight home. Twenty-five short years ago, that trip was the genesis of an organization that was to change thousands of lives, both North and Central American. I no longer question whether God told Archie to take me to Honduras, but I often wondered for years if he really called Archie to Honolulu!
Now, twenty-five years later, HOI is celebrating its Silver Anniversary through a series of events in the Decatur and Atlanta area highlighted by a congratulatory visit from President Juan Orlando Hernandez and the First Lady of Honduras, along with a host of other Honduran government officials. We will also honor four individuals who have supported our organization for many years in quiet, yet powerful, ways: David Allison, Joe Glenn, Barbara McCullough, and Ubaldo Ponce. You are cordially invited to engage with us on Thursday, November 13, for this festive fundraiser and celebratory evening as we reflect upon our twenty-five years of transformation in Central America. www.hoi.org/rsvp
HOI’s Rancho el Paraiso, in the Agalta Valley of Honduras, has been the backdrop to countless numbers of miracles over the last twenty-five years. With God’s grace we continue to see people and communities transformed. Young Life has established a prominent presence in the Valley and you can literally hear the sounds of joyous youth resonating through the hills. Medical miracles continue to take place, not the least of which is the near elimination of infant mortality in the area. Recreational organized soccer for boys, girls, men and women is on the way to foster friendships and a greater sense of community. The HOI schools continue to transform the lives of children and give them a brighter hope for the future. The school grounds themselves have received a face lift that reflects the robust academic environment that has been created and maintained, including a modern computer lab that will allow students to compete more equitably in the global marketplace. These are but a few of the innumerable miracles we celebrate.
Over the years, thousands of North Americans have joined in the effort to partner with the people who live in the 130 villages that surround our base in Honduras. Our faith-based approach to sustainable community and economic development, agriculture, education, and healthcare has stood the test of time, now becoming the model for our growth throughout the region. HOI has expanded to northern Nicaragua and southern Honduras to further the impact that began in the Agalta Valley. We are looking for many more teams that are eager to partner with the villagers in these areas, who long for a healthier and more economically sound life. Our mission is to help build up communities through sincere engagement with the people who live there and learning their needs and priorities. We want to become catalysts of change by providing resources and helping to identify opportunities so residents will have the ability to create communities they are proud and want to remain in to raise their families. There is much work to be done, but HOI is fully committed to follow God’s will and help the transformation continue.
As we continue to look back and press forward, join us as we celebrate the past 25 years of progress and ENGAGE with us as HOI approaches the next 25 years. Help us recognize and honor what God is doing in all of our lives!
Jerry Eickhoff, CEO