317 SE Trilein Drive, Ankeny IA 50021
SERVING OUR WORLD
APC has a special relationship with Corozal, El Salvador, and supports many international missions through the Presbyterian Church (USA) and its special offerings.
Read or watch the video below to learn more about our partnership with the El Salvador community. APC has gained so much from this partnership with our sister community in Corozal. Our eyes have been opened to how most of the world’s population lives.
20 YEARS OF TRUST AND FRIENDSHIP
APC has been able to provide medicine and latrines to the Corozal Community tp improve overall health.
APC has provided scholarships and school supplies to the Corozal Community. We also helped expand their school, adding 5 more grades.
El Salvador Partnership
Sitting in the shade of a huge tree on a very warm day in March 2003, our first delegation from APC met the families of El Corozal, El Salvador for the first time. Our delegation of 7 was invited to sit on an odd collection of chairs that were set out for us in the center of the crowd. Both the Salvadorans and the “Gringos” laughed as our pastor, Jim, pulled the handkerchief from his neck and wiped the dusty face of a smiling young boy hanging close by our group of friendly visitors.
Many things have changed over these 20 years. Electricity has finally been extended to their community, although not every home can afford to be connected. We now see cell phones, a few motorcycles and trucks, and even a TV or two that we did not see at all on our first visit. With financial support from APC, the two-room school has expanded to 4 rooms, and now teaches children through 9th grade instead of only 4th grade. A lovely church has been erected by the community members, and a community building now sits on a piece of land we helped Corozal obtain. We’ve supported dozens of students with scholarships to extend their education. Over the years APC mission funds have purchased fertilizer, water storage tanks, grain storage silos, latrines, medicines, school supplies, and emergency food baskets for the families.
Unfortunately, many things remain the same after 20 years. The homes in Corozal are simple; many have dirt floors and meager furnishings. Most cook over open fires indoors. The families continue to farm on steep mountain slopes subject to erosion and poor crop production. Extreme weather events put our friends in Corozal in a precarious situation, where they can lose their entire season of crops with one severe storm, as happened just recently. Access to healthcare continues to be challenging, and their daily physical labors are hard on their bodies. Attending high school in the town of Berlin is a big challenge, and we’ve had very few scholarship students from Corozal attend HS in the past few years.
Our Salvadoran brothers and sisters are blessed with hospitality, ingenuity, and problem-solving skills. They are full of God’s Spirit. We have Salvadoran friends with whom we have now had a 20-year relationship, even when we may not have met them in person. They still genuinely love each member of APC. We have learned that the most effective partnerships are not those that you drop in on for a few days, but those that create trust and friendship over time.