How it all began
Hello. My name is Mary Yates. I am a musician. In 2000, I went as a volunteer to Honduras and then started a fund-raising series of concerts to support two street childrens projects there: The Home of Love and Hope and Project Micah in Tegucigalpa. As people kindly gathered around me in support of the children, we called ourselves The Friends of El Hogar.
I have visited the Homes both by myself and with my husband Malcolm 5 times since 2000, and we know the children and staff personally. Sadly, we also know many children not lucky enough to live with these two Homes, or indeed any care project, and whose life on the streets is brutal and fraught with danger.
Since my first visit as a volunteer in 2000 with the United Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, I've felt compelled to do what I can to help them.
They give back much more than I could ever have imagined or could repay, and so, in their need, they are themselves a supreme encouragement. They are hard-working and faithful, aware of what could have been for them and eager to help other people, not only other street children, but also their sponsors and well-wishers.
Their prayer for us is that God might deepen our faith, strengthen, bless and prosper us, and defend us from all dangers. Such prayers are very touching coming as they do from young people who have next to nothing materially, but very generous hearts.
Once a child is abandoned to the streets, life usually goes permanently and tragically wrong, so much potential lost to utter insecurity - filth, rags, drugs, malnutrition, disease, ignorance, purposelessness, waste.
Rehabilitating children away from all that and into self-confident hope and skills for the future is very worthwhile, not only for them and their carers, mentor and teachers, but for Honduras as a whole.
The Home of Love and Hope and Project Micah are dependent on help like ours for the children's most basic needs of food, shelter and clothing, and equally for their future prospects through social care and education. Thank you for any support you give the children through The Friends of El Hogar. Your prayers and encouragement are invaluable. If you like music and support the concerts we will of course also be very grateful - and we believe you will enjoy them too!