Around The World

But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? - 1 John 3:17

Uganda:  Kuza Program    

KUZA is a dynamic leadership program in Uganda that serves an overlooked population:  high school and university young men and women. Through educational scholarships, practical job skills and character-building retreats, we equip the next generation of leaders with everything they need to change the course of their lives, and impact their families and communities through the love of Christ. As a volunteer run organization, there are many ways to be involved and make a difference in the lives of these young people. Whether it’s through direct student sponsorship, getting involved with KUZA Beads, or organizing/attending one of our annual events, there is a place for you in the KUZA family!

Visit http://www.kuzaprogram.org for more information or contact Sara Reamy at 503.245.3167 or sara@kuzaprogram.org

mexico:  tesoco and la purisima

In 2004, Riversgate Church took its first trip to Mexico, establishing a relationship with La Purisima, a mountainous-jungle community of 1000 villagers in central Mexico.  Over the next six years, we sent teams that ultimately (a) constructed a permanent church, (b) added community center and school improvements, (c) constructed a lit soccer field, (d) helped re-roof a number of family homes, (e) hosted soccer tournaments and VBS programs for students, (f) hosted a number of women's ministry and health clinic events for the entire village, and (g) purchased an industrial oven for pastry baking which helps fund both the church and community needs.  

With the gang violence escalating, we were forced to stop traveling to the village in 2010.  We began exploring other villages that we might embrace, ultimately finding Tesoco, a slightly larger village located in the central Yucatan Peninsula.  We took our first trip to Tesoco in 2011, busing 50 church members from La Purisima down to join us in sharing Christ's love with this new village.  It has been an amazing thing to see our brothers and sisters in La Purisima have a chance to see different parts of their country and share Christ in ways that we would never be able to do!  At the same time, it has been a continued blessing for us to pour into this new village in many of the same ways we were able to invest in La Purisima. 

Goals for 2015:

La Purisima is in desperate need of a deep water well to provide reliable water to the village.  Currently, two shallow wells and a larger rain catch basin provide the water for the village.  During the mid-late summer months, however, these dry up, causing the villagers to have to buy very expensive water from the neighboring cities.  The result is that many villagers purchase sugar-filled drinks that are cheaper substitutes for water.  In turn, this leads to many cases of early onset diabetes. 

Our goal for this year is to raise $18,000 to provide a deep water well in La Purisima that will relieve this shortage and also allow the village to sell excess water, the proceeds from which will go for health clinic needs and community center activities.  The villagers of La Purisima, who live on an average of $800/year are contributing $2,000 toward the project.  To date, we have received $10,000 towards this goal!  If you would like to help, you can make a tax-free donation, just specify Mexico Well in the message notes! 

2015 trips

We sent a small team of leaders to visit Tesoco from April 23-29, 2015.  Their purpose was to meet with church members, community leaders and school staff to reconnect and determine projects that we might pursue with a larger team later in the year.  Right now we are envisioning a potential trip in early 2016 to serve the community and church in whatever ways we are able to discern from this leader's trip!  

more information

If you are interested in learning more about our friends in Mexico or how you may be able to help, please contact shari.rainka@gmail.com or eric.arnold.home@gmail.com.