Dear Mission Members, Members, Sponsors and Supporters of CCAMRE,

As in the past, this year I left my home for Guatemala to make preparations for the arrival of the Mission Members.  This year I left on February 14th and the mission members arrived February 23rd.

This year I stayed behind after the mission, as I had my family join me in Guatemala.   This was an opportunity for my grandchildren, 6 and 8 years old, to see what their Nonna (Grandmother) is doing when she goes to Guatemala for her mission work.   They were able to witness the need of the families in the village of Volcancito, play with the other children and learn the different cultures.  This was truly a wonderful experience for my whole family. Consequently after 41 days away from my home I was ready and glad to be back.

Each year I like to share with you some details of our humanitarian missions to Guatemala.  I am very happy to say that we had a truly great and gratifying mission with the team of 14 volunteers, including 5 new members, all working hard and sharing their love, experiences and skills with the Mayan Chorti people.

One of the highlights of the mission was the inauguration of the Water Project in Volcancito, a significant event which took place on Thursday, February 28th.  It was a wonderful celebration as members of the CCAMRE mission, Rotary Clubs of Gualan Guatemala and St. Catharines Ontario, the Mayor and members of the municipality of La Union, and the whole community of Volcancito celebrated this grand achievement.  I would like to express our appreciation to Sandra Holloway who is a member of the Rotary Club of St. Catharines as she was instrumental in CCAMRE’s Water Project for Volcancito.   The community of Volcancito Abajo now has access to clean drinking water.

As usual, new challenges arose such as transportation to the mountains, logistics, government regulations, dust and heat.  However, these difficulties did not diminish the rewarding work done by the mission members.

The medical and dental teams were led by Sandra Holloway, Board Member.  The dental team was led by Dr. Russell Grover and included Jennifer Woodworth, Jessica Cowie, Rayan Nunes and Heidi Marie Jones who worked in conjunction with our Guatemalan dental team: Dr. Evette Amarillis, Dr. Rogelio Garcia and Dr. Javier Florian (EPS) a student of the University of San Carlos of Guatemala, who is doing his dental internship for 8 months in the “Dr. Grover Dental Clinic” in La Union.  The medical team, led by Dr. Yohana Ayala from the Health Center in La Union, along with Sandra Holloway and Yasmin Moore, RPN, attended many patients in one week. This was a truly great accomplishment as the communities in the mountains are in desperate need of health and dental care.

As part of the Senior’s Program, these elderly folk were seen by the Doctor and Dentists.  Also CCAMRE provided vitamins, ointments and various other medications to the seniors who are in particular need of help.  As well, Yasmin Moore instructed them in exercises which will help to alleviate their chronic pain.  This program is very close to our hearts as the seniors are very vulnerable people.

Ruslana Vorotyntseva was in charge of the Sponsor a Child Program with the support of Blanca Aurora Baldizon (USA) and Rayna Morales (Guatemala).  They interviewed the sponsored children and their families.

Our newest mission members, John Bot and George Brian Coutts, were in charge of evaluating the Stove Program.  They went up and down the mountains and visited every single stove in Volcancito and Pena Blanca.  I witnessed their tired and sweaty faces, however they never forgot to smile as they visited the families.

Heidi Marie Jones, a book writer, worked with the children creating pictures for a book that she will publish in the future. This book will be sold as a fundraiser once it is published.  She supported the dental team and helped with the Sponsor A Child program, as well.

Cecilia Bardsley, Scholarship Director, worked tireless hours visiting the high schools, universities and colleges which CCAMRE Scholarship recipients are attending.  She also interviewed teachers, students and parents in Volcancito, Pena Blanca and Timushan.  This was possible with the support of our translator Gabby Baldizon (USA), and the help of Lorena Salguero, a retired teacher from Guatemala who has been supporting this valuable program.

All the mission members’ efforts were crucial to the success of the humanitarian mission to Guatemala 2019.  These people donated their time, commitment, love and resources. I thank the Lord for the safe return of everyone to their homes and loved ones in Canada.

May the Lord reward you all.

Kindest regards,


Hilda Rossi

President and Founder