Updated: Nov 29, 2018
Cesar Garcia - director and founder of Time of Rescue (above)
The last week has been a tough one for Time of Rescue and many of the youth they attend to and work with on the streets of Guatemala City. As well as carrying out visits to street living youth Time of Rescue is on call 24 hours a day responding to emergency calls.
“They all have my number and they call me in any time of emergency – whether a birth is about to take place, a person needs taking to the hospital, someone has disappeared, a fight breaks out or if the police are chasing and beating them. Day and night, Time of Rescue responds to this level of activity.” – Cesar Garcia, director and founder of Time of Rescue.
With the type of work Time of Rescue carries out, on a frequent and ongoing basis different situations come to the fore. Throughout the last week the frequency and intensity of the work brought a real demand to the services and resources of Time of Rescue.
Cesar & new baby from Street living couple (above)
Time of Rescue attended to the birth of two babies from two street living girls. The work surrounding both these cases involved transporting the girls to the hospital, buying medication and finding places where the mothers and babies would go after the births. All of this as well as supporting the girls through this time of worry and anxiety – comforting and praying for them.
Cesar & Helens Baby (Left) - Sandy & Helen (Right)
Sadly one of the mothers returned to the streets with her less than a week old daughter last night to get hold of and consume drugs to feed her addiction. Time of Rescue found them that evening on the streets and took them both to the children’s courts. An option was presented for mother and baby to go to a home together. Sadly the mother with lack of self-belief and a striving to go back to the streets and continue consuming drugs returned to the streets. By herself the baby has gone to the home. A sad outcome of such events.
Sandy and with some of the Time of Rescue volunteers.
You may have heard about Sandy in a previous blog post click here...
Sandy is an incredible young lady of 24 years-old who has spent almost every year of her life living on the streets of Guatemala City. In the last six to nine months Sandy has made huge strides in her progression to leaving the street lifestyle. This has been incredible to see. Sandy, still living on the streets, had cut out taking drugs and cut down on glue-sniffing to a minimum.
Sandy performing a clowning drama in an abandoned house some street youth live in.
For the past months she has been volunteering with Time of Rescue visiting other groups of street living youth in Guatemala City giving devotionals, clowning dramas (see video above) demonstrating and communicating her faith and passionately giving talks encouraging youth to leave the street lifestyle, to stop taking drugs, stop stealing, to reconcile with families, while empathizing with them highlighting her own personal challenges and journey she is on heading towards leaving the streets.
Sandy is a leader with huge potential that she is already filling. Sadly Sandy was captured by the police this week outside a drop-in centre for street living youth. Sandy has been wanted for crimes she has committed in the past for the last year and a half. Sandy has been sentenced to six years in a women’s prison. It is incredibly difficult, knowing Sandy as she is now with a loving heart full of dreams and desires for a positive future not just for herself but to help others leave the streets, that she now faces six years in prison.
Throughout the process of Sandy being taken to a police station and locked away, the court case and sentence given the following day and being transported to the prison the next, Time of Rescue were with Sandy supporting her every step of the way through this extremely worrying and fearful time.
“It breaks my heart. Frustration, sadness and pain fills me to see this happening to Sandy. It is difficult to find words to express how I feel.” – Cesar Garcia, director and founder of Time of Rescue.
Through knowing Sandy for many years, through her dark days and seeing the strides of change in her over the last year, Cesar finds it testing to come to terms with Sandy’s present circumstances. Sandy needs a huge amount of prayer and support.
“Please don’t forget me. Please pray for me and come visit me.” - Sandy
Williams Funeral (above)
To finish off such a week, one of the boys living on the streets that Time of Rescue works with tragically took his own life. William was a young person who had left childcare and returned to the streets. Living such a lifestyle took its toll and sadly the result was William taking his life into his own hands. While Cesar was at the morgue sorting out the paperwork for William’s burial, he had two little boys with him that he had just found and rescued from the streets. These two boys have gone to the home where the baby, mentioned earlier on in this blog, has gone.
“As well as working with Guatemala City’s children courts on the cases presented to them, Time of Rescue attends to two groups of street youth. Each group consists of about 30/35 drug addicts. Cases such as those that have happened this week we attend to on an ongoing basis, responding immediately to calls for help. The intensity of our work brings demands to the resources with which we work. We have one full-time worker (myself) and one part-time. We work with one minibus and buy medication each month to treat and prevent diseases, cuts and bruises.” – Cesar
Cesar Garcia and Carlos - Time of Rescue
It has been an extremely strenuous week for Time of Rescue. Cesar asks for support and prayer – for those they work with and for the safety of themselves. Such situations and emergencies as illustrated in this blog are ongoing and more resources to contribute to and increase the work are needed.
The Nicodemus Trust is committed to supporting Time of Rescue. If you are interested in supporting in any way and would like more information about the work of Time of Rescue please do get in touch – firstname.lastname@example.org