About UsMore Information About El Jordán

El Jordán

Where did the name El Jordán come from?

Our place is called "Centro de Apoyo y Orientación: El Jordán."

The Centro de Apoyo y Orientación part will not necessarily be used all the time but at least on paper to describe what type of place it is. It basically means a place of help and direction.

The El Jordan (The Jordan) part comes from the first chapters of the book of Joshua where after years of slavery in Egypt and the 40 years of wandering in the desert because of disobedience, the Israelites are allowed to enter the promised land. It reminds us of their legacy of God's covenant - and that promise turning into a reality.


The Reality In Santa Cruz

The problems faced by the kids who live on the streets in Santa Cruz are very real. Many kids are stuck in a trap of drug addictions and delinquency which few have chosen to be in.

The majority of the children on the streets come from broken families. Many have suffered the death or abandonment of a parent, most often the father. Many have run from abuse, exploitation or just a lack of family love. Often at a very young age kids are burdened with heavy responsibilities such as earning money, helping raise younger siblings and helping to run the home. The liberty offered on the street seems like a bright alternative to the responsibilities and expectations of the home. Many never have a chance to feel love and security or have a chance to enjoy a normal childhood, parental guidance and regular schooling.

Many start using drugs as young as 8 years old. It becomes a way of life. The drugs commonly used are glue, marijuana, cocaine paste, cocaine, pharmaceutical drugs and alcohol. Among children the inhalants are the most popular. Drugs serve a definite purpose - to numb cold, fear and loneliness.

Any effective solution must look at other important problems in society that affect the lives of the street kids such as nutrition, health, housing and family relationships. Training, education and increased public awareness and involvement are important.

For a closer look at El Jordan and it's ministry with the street kids in Santa Cruz, please take the time to view this video.

Some of the Services Offered

El Jordán

A Safe Place to Find a Better Life

There are many services which the center offers in order to help the kids find a better life. An effective way to help the kids is to teach them practical skills with which they can make a living or help them find job opportunities in the future. El Jordán offers classes in typing, sewing, computers, baking, leatherworking, macramé and English, equipping many with a means by which to earn a bit of money.

As many of those taking the classes have children of their own, childcare services are provided. For many of these smallest ones this is their opportunity to receive a bath, a good meal and some much needed love and attention.



El Jordán

School Supplies, a Library, Tutoring and Quiet Safe Place to Study

The center provides a safe place where those who decide to go to school can come and do their homework and make use of the small library or get some assistance. Donations to the centre make it possible to help with various school supplies that could not be afforded otherwise.

For many the required school uniforms, fees and required materials make going to school all but impossible. Assistance from the center help make it possible.



El Jordán

Workshops - a Separate Facility to Train the Boys

Special donations have made it possible to set up a facility where boys can learn skills like welding, carpentry and leatherworking. Volunteers come to teach the boys who learn these skills while making things they can then sell to earn a bit of money.

There is also exercise equipment as well as a mini-synthetic soccer field which is used by the boys but also rented out to help cover some of the costs of the facility. More recently a vegetable garden has been put in where the boys can learn how to cultivate vegetables which they can use for food.



El Jordán

A Special Christmas Meal Served to Over 2500 On the Streets

Each Christmas a host of volunteers works together to help serve a special meal to over 2500 kids on the street, something we call Christmas on the Streets.

Preparations start weeks in advance and culminate with many working 24 or more hours straight through the night on December 23 in order to make sure all the food is ready for delivery the following day. In addition to the meal, each child receives a small gift bag.


Our Main Facility

El Jordan's main facility is where the administrative office is located. It incorporates a large gathering area and kitchen, both a medical and a dental consulting rooms, library, various classrooms, childcare facilities, classrooms as well as a number of living quarters for volunteers and guests.

The Boys' Workshops

El Jordán's second facility is a place where boys can learn skills like welding, carpentry and leatherworking. A synthetic court provides a place to play soccer and enjoy other safe, fun activities. A vacant adjacent lot was converted into a vegetable garden to provide food while teaching the boys how to grow vegetables.

Partner Organizations

El Jordán works very closely with orphanages and rehabilitation centers in Bolivia. Kids that arrive at El Jordán often need a place to live or help with addictions. Donations arriving at El Jordán, such as clothing and hygiene products, are distributed as needed to these organizations.