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Introduction to Back2Back Monterrey

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Monterrey, often referred to as the Sultan of the North, is the capital of the Mexican state Nuevo Leon. It is the largest city in the state and the third largest metropolitan area in Mexico. One of the most important production and trade centers in the country, Monterrey is home to approximately 4.5 million people. It is a sprawling business and industrial center in the midst of the Sierra Madre Mountains. A large separation lies between the wealthy and underprivileged in Monterrey with only a small percentage of its population considered “middle class.” The combination of high unemployment rates and a national minimum wage of less than $5 a day contribute to the cycle of generational poverty. In 1997, Todd and Beth Guckenberger, Back2Back Co-Executive Directors, stepped out in faith and moved their lives to Monterrey, Mexico to love on the orphaned child and partner with local children’s homes. Eight days following their move, the first mission team arrived. What began as a hopeful prayer for 50 visiting guests turned into an outpouring of 350 mission guests arriving in Mexico to serve over the course of their first year. In 1998, the initial property in Monterrey was purchased. Partnerships with children’s homes began to flourish and Back2Back began to share the love of Jesus with each child they encountered while meeting physical needs. Partnerships with several local children’s homes allow Back2Back’s largest staff team, partnered with qualified and called social workers, psychologists, tutors, and a growing local volunteer movement, to consistently provide holistic care. Meeting spiritual, physical, educational, emotional, and social needs is the goal for every child served in Monterrey As deeper connection was established, it was discovered the children leaving the children’s homes at 15 were walking into situations putting them at risk of repeating the orphan cycle. This insight, and the desire and call to do more, led Back2Back staff to found the Hope Program in 2001. The Hope Program began with offering four boys and two girls the opportunity to pursue their educational goals while living in a family-style setting under the care of loving, married couples called to serve. Hope Program students are mentored, supported through scholarships and tutoring, and are continually encouraged to work toward their dreams. The growing Hope Program continues to see students graduate with degrees in nursing, law, culinary arts, graphic design, education, and more. Many Hope Program students return post-graduation to work in their communities and serve children in the very places they once lived. Back2Back Monterrey offers Transitions Programming for students following college graduation. With the desire to equip each young man and woman as they pursue employment, the Transition Program helps provide housing and mentoring services to assist new graduates from full-time student to full-time employee. In 2012, Back2Back came alongside the children’s services in the state of Nuevo Leon, Mexico, and over the course of a year, we saw drafted into law a provision for legalized foster care. Back2Back works alongside local churches in order to meet and partner with Christian families to foster children in need of loving families. Nuevo Leon licensed Back2Back to train, place, and monitor those foster care families and today we currently have more than 30 children placed in families in Monterrey. As Back2Back Monterrey continues to grow, each child served comes to understand they are seen and known, uniquely individual, and wholly loved by the staff caring for them and a God who is writing their story. Back2Back, through collaboration with other like-minded partners, Mexican nationals caring for their own, and committed sponsors and mission guests, is committed to providing deep, holistic care for orphaned and vulnerable children in Monterrey. Offering care for today and hope for tomorrow, we never lose sight of the vision each child will become dependent on Jesus – a devoted follower of Christ; interdependent in their community – a good citizen and neighbor, and an independent adult – able to care for themselves and their family. Back2Back will be faithful to the children and families of Monterrey as they build the future of their beautiful and vibrant country.

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Duration: 5 minutes and 1 second
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Language: English
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Posted by: jholden on Nov 10, 2017

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