Our Global Mission to Tasajera continues to meet via Zoom, conference calls, and through the CIS (our El Salvadoran partner in solidarity) website (https://www.cis-elsalvador.org). Everyone is encouraged to visit the website and read the yearly report, which shows the spectrum of services CIS provides throughout the country of El Salvador. For those of you in the congregation interested in learning Spanish, the CIS Language School continues to be recognized as one of the most comprehensive, individually focused programs online. Instruction is available for both children and adults, and family learning is encouraged.
This past year has been difficult for Salvadorans not only because of the pandemic but also because of major storms and hurricanes. The islanders of Tasajera want to thank you, again, for the food relief money which the church sent last year.
Our church has two accounts for Global Mission. The first is our restricted account (El Salvador Scholarships), which is only used for student scholarships. We send $10,000 a year to CIS for Tasajera student scholarships, which is funded by all of you during our global special offering during World Communion Sunday in October each year. You, as a congregation, remain committed and generous. Thank you!
The second account (Global Ministries) comes from our church budget. This year, $2,000 has been allocated and can be used for emergency food and supplies. We have been asked twice for assistance in recent times; once after a flood and once for lost revenue due to pandemic restrictions. We also sent money to pay for additional services after severe weather disrupted the clean water campaign and blew down the antennae used for internet access.
Happily, all of our island students have been able to stay enrolled online. They now take down the antennae each night to protect it from harsh weather. We also used money to pay transportation costs due to the increased need for CIS staff to travel to the island. Use of money from the budget is reviewed by the Social Justice and Witness Committee, the Church Board and the Budget Committee. We thank these committees for allocating monies to support full educational access.
We continue to think about our next trip to El Salvador and are in the process of discussing with Leslie Schuld, Executive Director of CIS, how the yearly conference will be organized. If it is online, we remain hopeful our church youth will be able to participate. In a recent conversation, Leslie did mention there is no COVID on the island and the United Nations was planning on providing vaccines to the residents very soon. At present, the Salvadoran government has been assisting in providing food packages. She also mentioned that our scholarship students are continually making a difference in both La Colorada and Tasajera, the two communities on the island. Elsie, our first teacher from the island, and Carmen Elayna, chair of the Tasajera Education and Scholarship Committee, continue to motivate students to further their education, whether it be technical school or university.
Please contact Beth Pfeiffer or Brent Arnold if you are interested in attending our Global Mission to Tasajera meetings or if you would like more information about the youth summer conference and/or future family home stay Global Mission trips to Tasajera.
The Tasajera Committee