Latest update

Cases of COVID-19 in Honduras are declining. An average of 541 new cases were reported daily in the week before 6th April. As of 5th April, Honduras had administered enough doses to fully vaccinate 0.3% of its 9.2 million people. Honduras is facing an enormous increase in hunger and poverty from the dual effects of the pandemic and 2020 hurricanes. The number of households without enough food has increased by more than 50% during the pandemic, according to the World Food Program.

Flooding from the hurricanes left thousands of people homeless and destroyed both staple food crops and cash crops, including coffee farms. The poverty rate has increased from 65% to 75%. Businesses in the country are currently operating at 50% capacity while recreation sites such as bars, gyms and theatres are closed. A curfew is in place from 9pm to 5am.

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COVID-19 in Honduras

How is Compassion currently operating in Honduras?

  • Are Compassion centres open?

    At this point, all Compassion child development centres in Honduras are closed in order to abide by local guidelines.

    Local staff have delivered almost 286,000 food packs, 197,000 hygiene kits and have also been able to facilitate medical support for nearly 4000 people.

    All who are delivering food have undergone training by the local government on safety measures. Church workers are keeping in touch with families via phone calls and are conducting live video classes for the children where possible.

  • Are children receiving letters?

    Letters are currently being delivered in Honduras, although delivery to and from your child may take a bit longer than normal. We encourage you to continue writing your child, as all children need words of hope and encouragement now more than ever before. Thank you for your ministry!

  • Are gifts being delivered?

    Gifts continue to be distributed in Honduras, although they are currently delayed. Staff members have been given the option to disburse monetary gifts to an appropriate, verified caregiver, if necessary. This applies to family gifts and child gifts (including birthday and final gifts). Families may spend the gift on whatever they consider most important to meet family needs. The caregiver will decide the best use of the money, recognising that sometimes purchasing food or paying rent is in the best interest of a child.

How you can pray

Thank you for praying for children and families in Honduras who have been impacted by COVID-19—and the local staff and churches who continue to serve them in difficult circumstances.

Please join us in praying for the following:

  • Pray for wisdom for the doctors as they treat Benjamin’s vision loss. Pray for healing and complete restoration of his eyesight.
  • Pray that God would be with baby Matias and his family as they process his diagnosis of hydrocephaly.
  • Pray for encouragement and strength for Carlos and Argelia’s grandmother as she continues to receive chemotherapy.
  • Pray that God would heal Jacob’s mother and she would be able to continue to love and care for Jacob.
  • Pray that God would continue to protect and keep the children, families and staff safe and healthy.
  • Safety and protection of the Compassion staff as they provide relief supplies to the children and families who need it most.
Keeping connected in Honduras

Keeping connected in Honduras

They might not be able to physically meet on the playground, but God’s love continues to unite sponsored children across Honduras in powerful ways! When Honduras was placed on lockdown to prevent the spread of COVID-19, local churches were determined to continue bringing hope to isolated families.   Read more open_in_new

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Please note: Due to the current pandemic, most child development centres in Honduras are temporarily closed. Our local church partners continue to meet the urgent needs of the children through home-based care.

A snapshot of Compassion's Child Sponsorship Program in Honduras

Compassion’s program is contextualised across countries and communities, as well as age groups.

  • Children aged 1 to 3 receive home-based care.
  • Children aged 3 to 14 visit the Compassion centre for six hours each week spread over two or three days after school.
  • Students aged 15 and older attend for four hours a week over two days.
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Compassion Program Activities in Honduras

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Compassion assisted children in Honduras typically attend program activities at their local child development centre after school. Here is an example of what a typical program day looks like for children in Honduras.

Devotional time - Children are taught to pray.

Spiritual lessons - Children sing songs and learn Bible stories.

Break and snack time - Children can play in a safe environment and develop friendships.

Social-emotional lessons - Children learn conflict resolution skills and how to develop healthy self-esteem and a godly character. Children often come from challenging home environments and are taught social and personal skills.

Lunch and social time - The majority of children do not have adequate nutrition in their homes and schools do not provide meals. Compassion centres at the local church aim to provide children with extra nutrition each time they attend the centre. Children experiencing malnutrition often receive extra food rations. Snacks usually consist of fruit, cereal and milk. Meals often comprise meat, cereals, vegetables and fruit.

Health lessons - Children learn practical health and hygiene tips.

Letter writing and career planning - Older children work with local staff to identify their strengths and interests and set goals for their future.

In addition, children are invited to participate in sporting tournaments, retreats, camps and educational visits. Older students are offered a variety of vocational skills workshops, such as welding, beauty, sports, baking, music, and computing. Parents and caregivers are offered parenting classes.

The greatest needs impacting children living in poverty in Honduras

65

mothers die from pregnancy related causes per 100,000 births

Located in the corridor from South America to Mexico and the United States, Honduras is a transit country for everything from illicit drugs to human trafficking and mass migration.

Honduras’s history since Spanish colonisation in the 16th century is marked by military coups and counter-coups.

Racked by violence and corruption, gang rule and inequality, it is one of the most unstable countries in a volatile region, with recent widespread drought creating further hardship for locals and leading to ever-increasing numbers travelling across borders—most headed north for Mexico and the United States.

Almost half the population lives in poverty, and around 17 per cent of Hondurans live in extreme poverty (less than US$1.90 per day). Honduras has the second-highest extreme poverty rate in Latin America and the Caribbean, after Haiti. The country is also afflicted by one of the worst rates of inequality in the world, with a stark division between rich and poor.

Remittances (money sent home by expatriates) make up a significant part of the nation’s economy and many families are dependent on this source of income. Small-scale farming, the backbone of the nation’s agricultural economy, is collapsing; many rural communities are no longer able to sustain themselves due to drought and changing rainfall patterns.

In 2017, President Juan Orlando Hernandez was the first president in Honduras’s history to run for re-election, after the Supreme Court lifted a constitutional ban on presidents serving more than one term. He won, in a result that was widely questioned by international observers and met with protests across the country. More than 20 people were killed in subsequent riots.

Meanwhile, Honduran children living in poverty face many challenges, with malnutrition and insecurity foremost among them. They are particularly vulnerable to the threat posed by gang activity, with many boys coerced into joining and girls threatened with rape and forced labour. As meeting their basic needs becomes more difficult, some see gang life as the only alternative to starving or risking their lives on the road to the United States border.

Yet local churches across the country are working hard to nurture and protect these vulnerable children, to ensure they have the safety and space to grow and develop and experience a hope more powerful than poverty.

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