How we became involved in Honduras
In 1973, I (Jennifer Cox) was made aware of a lady from a church in Derby, who had started an orphanage in Honduras near the capital city, Tegucigalpa. I began to help her by sending out parcels containing items of children's clothing and small personal gifts. As the Orphanage grew in size from 5 to 153 over the next twenty five years, our ministry also grew with it. Initially this took the form of small two pound weight parcels sent via the G P O. It later developed into larger parcels, air freighting and finally expanded to 40' containers that were sea freighted. We have now sent over eighty such containers (1000 tons) of supplies. We pack them in Derby each March and they arrive in Honduras around Easter week. They usually reach the people about the first week of May.
The ministry started in a very small way in response to the Lords direction. As such it has developed and is still directed and funded at the Lords direction. It is an independent work which is not aligned with any one specific church, denomination or other large parent organisation. Until the recent advent of CH Trust the work had been totally administered by myself with the assistance of some like-minded friends. This largely remains the case with CH Trust except that we have to be more formally constituted to meet the Charity Commission requirements. Our funding comes from a variety of different sources, in different amounts each year as the Lord blesses.
The direction of our ministry started to change a little in 1998 following the devastating legacy of Hurricane Mitch. Up to this time the ministry had confined itself to the one orphanage. In order to help relieve the effects of Mitch the attributes and shipping expertise of the ministry were marshalled and focussed to deliver relief aid to Honduras. The resulting new contacts and a widening of our horizon have led the ministry to engage the problems of Honduras on a broader front. The primary objective of our work now is to help advance the prospects of the less privileged children in Honduras through the provision of Christian love, improved nutrition and improved education.
As the work has grown the need to become a registered charity has become increasingly apparent. We registered in 1999 under the new and broader based Children of Honduras Trust. Previously we were known as the `Valley of Angels Orphanage.´
Typically, the containers we send are filled with school furniture, children's clothes and shoes, medicines, dried milk and other food items etc. These are collected throughout the year by people and churches around the country and brought to our base in Derby by any means possible. Many of the items are second hand but still of a quality worth sending. The cost of sending the four containers, plus bought out contents each March comes to about £28,000. This is raised from individual and church donations across many denominations.