Diamonds in the Rough – August 2018

In All Things God Is There

In March, representatives of Joshua 1:Nine were welcomed into a few of the boys’ homes to meet their family, learn about their lives outside of the baseball field as well as create deeper relationships. One of the families who welcomed us was Rafael’s family (known as Mello by his friends – pronounced may-o). Mello is 17 years old and lives with his mom, twin sister Angelina, aunt, niece and nephew. He is a pitcher on the team and likes to cheer for the Yankees. He loves to study history.

While with his family Mello’s mom made it very clear she has concerns about the safety of her children because the family does not have access to a latrine at their house. Instead they are required to go down the street to a friend’s house. Multiple times she asked for help and it became very clear her fear around this safety issue was extreme.

These are the types of projects J1Nine is looking for. We never want to to go into the community and force a project on anyone. The only good projects are the ones where the community actually has an expressed need and this was a project we could get our arms around. With that in mind we started putting together a group to go down in the fall to build the family a latrine.

The need for this project became even more profound when Head Coach Chico informed us Mello’s Uncle, who is the only person providing financial support to the family, was recently killed while on vacation in another part of the island. This family is now in crisis mode. There is no money for food and no support for the kids as they start a new school year this week. The latrine project is coming at a time when one concern can be alleviated from the mind of Mello’s mother and the safety of the family can be increased.



Mello’s house is on the right. There is a small yard to the right of it where we will be building the latrine in November.

We have an ask for all of you reading this. The trip to build Mello’s family’s latrine is happening November 9-17 and we are praying for some additional hands to make it a success. If you have ever thought about traveling to the Dominican Republic (or you haven’t but God is telling you in this moment you need to go) please contact us by clicking the box below. We have six people committed to helping this family but we have a need for an additional three or more people to make the project a success. It will be a week of hard work but also a lot of fun. We’ll help Mello’s family but also play with the kids, spend time enjoying the Caribbean and you will fall in love with the island and it’s people. It might be your first trip but it won’t be your last.

If you have even the smallest amount of interest please don’t hesitate to reach out for more information. We are praying you will listen to the nudge that is in your heart right now. Fuerte y Veliente, Strength and Courage; that is what we are praying for from you.