Hold the date! 9.1.17 TEN FE TASTE: A GUATEMALAN DINNER & ROUNDTABLE EVENT

Be on the lookout for your invitations in the mail. Come out and meet don Romeo and Berta, our on the ground co-directors in Guatemala, and meet Warren Baker, TEN FE's newest board member.  Have authentic Guatemalan cuisine and hear what's new with TEN FE, its plans for a school and community center, and its current students.  This night will be interactive and engaging!  Don't miss it!

9.1.17 at Master Provisions' SAVE Center in Florence, KY. 6-9 p.m.

For more info, or if you'd like to volunteer at this event, please contact Julie Luebbers at jluebbers@msn.com or 513-325-2118.

Master Provisions sends a video crew to Guatemala to document the essence of TEN FE!

Be on the lookout soon for video footage of the TEN FE students, their families, and the land of the future TEN FE school and community center, all thanks to Master Provisions and our partnership with them.  In August I will have the pleasure of traveling back to Santiago to conduct interviews and film footage for a promotional message about TEN FE and our mission as an organization.  I am very grateful for this opportunity...I can't wait to see what comes out of this special effort. :)

 

PEI Logistics, Master Provisions and TEN FE connect January 1, 2017!

Through a dynamic partnership between Master Provisions and TEN FE, PEI has joined us to make the TEN FE dream a reality.  Thank you to the generosity, compassion, and boldness of Jeff Loy at PEI Logistics in Cincinnati/northern Kentucky for creating not only this partnership, but for creating opportunities for so many underprivileged kids in Guatemala.  I am excited to roll out this new sponsorship program with you and see where it takes us.  Thank you being bold and for taking a chance to touch the lives of many special kids that you haven't met yet.  Get ready June 2017!  Check out PEI at http://www.shippei.com/

Master Provisions of Florence, KY

Master Provisions has decided to partner with TEN FE!  They are going to include our wonderful TEN FE students as part of their quest to take care of orphans around the world.  This partnership has the potential to ensure that these children will have ongoing success and long term financial security for their education.  Thank you Roger Babik for making this possible.  I am so proud of this partnership.  God bless you!

Check out for yourselves what awesome things Master Provisions does locally and abroad.

www.masterprovisions.org

Delta Epsilon Society (DES) Community Service Award, April 14, 2016

A true honor for TEN FE. Congratulations to Julie Luebbers
Congratulations to Julie, the local chapter of DES (Delta Epsilon Society) selected her non-profit TEN FE as this year’s recipient of the Community Service Award. DES is a national honor society for colleges and universities with a Catholic tradition (http://www.deltaepsilonsigma.org/en-us/default.aspx). The Society was founded in 1938 and recognizes students who have achieved academic success (top 20% requirement) and have demonstrated a commitment to community service. Each year, 30-40 new members, undergrads and graduate students are inducted, who have met these qualifications. During the Induction Ceremony, a local community service agency that does great work is recognized. The Induction Ceremony is this Thursday, April 14 from 7-8 p.m. in the Science Lecture Hall.

 

 

Anyone interested in joining Athentikos, Se Luz, and TEN FE for a special ART Therapy workshop in June 2016?

To apply, visit https://www.athentikos.com/portfolio-posts/iaa-2016-se-luz/

Athentikos is recruiting team members for I AM ART 2016 Se Luz/TEN FE workshop in Guatemala. We are partnering with Se Luz  and TEN FE. They will host an I AM ART camp at a local church. Space is limited and applications will be selected in the order they are received.

Are you passionate about creativity? Do you paint, write, draw, dance, sculpt, sew, act, sing, perform … etc? Do you have creative media skills in video, audio, or photography? Are you interested in using your talents to make a difference?

I AM ART is an opportunity to use creativity to help people who live in difficult situations.

The 10 day I AM ART trip includes:

  • 2 days of team building and creative exploration
  • 5 days of teaching workshops at an art camp
  • Art Show with the community
  • Sight seeing

You don’t have to be a professional.

Athentikos will equip you to teach creative workshops to at-risk children, and document transformational stories in photo and video. You don’t have to be a professional. Bring your skills, and passion to use them with purpose in a 10 day trip. Invite your friends and join the journey of transformation! Connect to the greater story, exercising the gifts you love!

Feliz Navidad! Christmas for TEN FE

Christmas time in Guatemala is special; for the majority of people in Guatemala (the poor) it is seen as strictly a religious holiday; one stripped of the commercialization surrounding Christmas that has become all too prevalent in the U.S.  Christmas, and most things in Guatemala, are simple because there are few to no resources for the majority of extremely poor people. To the poor in Guatemala, Santa Claus doesn't exist...nor the does the idea of giving or receiving a gift.  There just isn't money to spend on non-essential things for so many people in Guatemala.  It goes without saying, that the TEN FE students are no different.  When one third of the students are orphans and the others only have a working mother in their household, the idea of having extra money is a fallacy.  These kids could not go to school because their families could not afford a school uniform...so the thought of a gift...just doesn't happen.  Each year, a donor sends don Romeo $500 (a personal donation) to buy the TEN FE kids a gift at Christmas.  And sadly, each year, the need is so great that he spends the money buying them underwear and socks, a few school supplies, and a few pieces of candy.  The kids are grateful to receive whatever they are blessed with at such a special time of the year.  This year was an extra special year for the TEN FE students because Monica was able to spend Christmas in Guatemala with the wonderful Sactic family, and in doing so was able to deliver a special Christmas gift to each and every child.  This year, the personal donation of $500 went to buy a watch for each kid...something they would never dream of owning.  In addition, they got Christmas cards from Villa Madonna Spanish students, candy canes, chocolates, school supplies, little games and toys...and not to worry--they also got their much needed socks and underwear.  What a true blessing for Monica to witness such an awesome event and be a part of something truly special at Christmas time.  I believe that she got to see the true meaning of Christmas this year in Santiago, Guatemala.  God bless you all.  Merry Christmas and TEN FE.

Queen Bee Half Marathon 2015

If you are interested in helping TEN FE earn some money, please consider volunteering at the Queen Bee Half Marathon on 10/10/15.  TEN FE will be working at Mile 6 to pass out candy to the runners and to help cheer them on.  Hours are 7:30-9:30 am and last year was a lot of fun!  If you are interested in more information, or helping out, please email Julie at jluebbers@msn.com.  Muchas gracias y TEN FE!

TEN FE's Second Guate-Gala is in 3 days!

Get ready to come out for a fun filled evening at the Second Guate-Gala.  Join MC, Lisa Cooney, and guest speaker, Courtney Smalley on Friday night, August 14th.  Hear about Courtney's experiences working in Guatemala with TEN FE for 3 months.  Also Special Guests don Romeo and his family will be in attendance.  Take the opportunity to talk with them about the important work they do on  a daily basis for TEN FE.  There will be dinner, open bar, Silent Auction, games, music and lots more.  Proceeds go to help TEN FE raise funds to build a grade school and youth community center in Santiago, Guatemala.  Please come out for a good cause!  Last day to purchase tickets is today!   Tickets can be purchased on the 'Guate-Gala 2015 tab.  Hope to see you there!  Thank you and TEN FE.

Win-Win: Save Money and Help Kids

Hey, everyone!

There is now yet another convenient way to support TEN FE. Goodshop is an online shopping portal that will connect you to your favorite stores, give you great coupons, and donate a portion of the money you spend to TEN FE.

Here's a list of some of the most popular retailers on Goodshop:

All you have to do is sign up and click "Find a cause to support," then select TEN FE as your charity. We recommend bookmarking the page so that the next time you want to buy something online you'll remember to check for deals and navigate to your store through Goodshop. It's just that easy to support our kids in Guatemala!

TEN FE Welcomes Alex, Student #33

One of the things that I wanted to do during my trip to Guatemala was to personally meet the kids who will be joining TEN FE in January, 2016. This trip I was meeting Irma (age 9) and Olga (age 7) who are relatives of kids already involved with TEN FE, and Carlos (age 14) from another town (based on the recommendation of Mario Yac).  I had no intention of adding a new student mid-year to the TEN FE group of 32, but once I met Alex, I couldn't let an opportunity to work with a dedicated student like him pass TEN FE by.

Please meet Gudiel Alexander Choxin Puac, or otherwise known as Alex. He is an amazing young man (age 18) and I'd like to share a little of his story. He is in the third year of middle school (called Basico in Guatemala), which if you recall is not tuition free anywhere in Guatemala. The cost of one year of Basico, plus a uniform, is approximately $250. It is impressive that Alex is half way through his third year of Basico...something not half of the population in his town has achieved. But it's even more incredible when you know a little bit about what Alex has endured in his 18 years.

Alex grew up in a very poor home. His mother died when he was young, at about the age of 10. Alex has two younger siblings who were approximately 6 and 8 at that time. Soon after, his father remarried. The father worked and the stepmother 'took care' of Alex and his two siblings, but she insisted that they work to earn more money for the family. Alex and his siblings attended grade school in the mornings and would work in the fields in the afternoons. The stepkids were often mistreated and were not fed if they did not earn enough money each day. Alex recalled that on many nights, if they had not earned enough money, the stepmother would not let them enter the house and they would end up sleeping in the streets. When Alex was 12, with some help from neighbors and a few family relatives, he and his younger siblings moved out of the house because they couldn't stand the abuse. Alex, now the oldest in the household, continued to study and work and take care of his younger brother and sister. When Alex finished 6th grade and moved into middle school (Basico), he elected to attend school on the weekends (common in Santiago) so that he could work a full time job Monday through Friday.

For two and a half years now, Alex travels by bus each morning at 5:00 am to go to Guatemala City where he works construction, as an assistant. He finishes work at 6:00 pm and then rides an hour home on the bus back to Santiago. He earns enough money to support himself and his siblings, but he hasn't been able to cover all of the tuition cost at school. Alex told me about the debt that he carries from his school, part of last year's tuition and all of this year's tuition, and how it burdens him. In addition, he was not able to buy a new uniform this year or buy any of the books. He is grateful that the school still allows him to come everyday and study, given his debt of about $275. However, the school clearly stated that they will not give him his diploma when he graduates in October until his debt is paid off. As I was listening to the incredible story of Alex, thinking about his perseverance, motivation and dedication to his siblings, work and his studies, I was touched by his eagerness and excitement to tell me (when I asked) what he wants for his future. When one graduates from Basico in Guatemala, the next step is Diversificado (high school). High school is even more expensive than middle school and because Alex wants to study Graphic Design in high school, he will likely have to go to Guatemala City to find a high school that offers that specialty. As I was curious about his plans for the future, I asked Alex that if he does go to school in Guatemala City next year and continues to work in Guatemala City, if he might consider moving to Guatemala City. His answer was a quick 'no' with the rationale that he will stay in Santiago to take care of his siblings, now 15 and 13.


When I heard Alex's story and visited his house I was amazed by his strength, boldness and tenacity. Before I left, I told Alex that TEN FE would pay off his debt at the school. He had no idea that this would happen. Don Romeo told Alex that he personally would go pay the debt off at the school. Alex, shocked, started to tear up and smiled from ear to ear. This is no exaggeration...in that moment, he straightened up in his chair, asked if we were serious and when he concurred that we were, he smiled, his cheeks turned red, his eyes were watering and you could literally see that the weight that he had been carrying on his shoulders was lifted. He immediately thanked God and us for helping him through a rough time in his life. For a few moments, Alex looked like a content kid...not someone who was stressed about school, siblings, work, debt and where their next meal was coming from. It was a special moment that I wish I could share with everyone reading this story. No 18 year old should have to carry that weight alone.

When I told someone this story in person and showed them the pictures of Alex and his house, they immediately handed me $200 and said to pay for the rest of Alex's tuition for this school year and to buy the books that he needs. TEN FE is thrilled to help and support someone like Alex. Welcome TEN FE student # 33.

TEN FE Talks with 6th-Grade Class at Beechwood Elementary

On May 20, 2015, it was an honor to come talk with Mrs. Hartke's 6th-grade social studies classes about Guatemala, TEN FE, and our mission and goals for the future.  I had no idea that after I left Beechwood Elementary School that day, Mrs. Hartke and the 6th grade students secretly started collecting money for TEN FE.  I was shocked when they called me back into her class and presented me with a check!  Unbelievable work by diligent, motivated 6th graders!  Thank you to all of the 6th grade students, their parents, and of course, to Mrs. Hartke for helping to make a difference in the lives of underprivileged children in Guatemala.