Lizeth started using alcohol and drugs when she was 14 years old. A friend on the streets who knew about Mosoj Yan brought her to the center. At Mosoj Yan, Lizeth learned about God’s love for her and accepted Christ. The lessons she has learned at the center have encouraged her to complete her education and go on to college.

Erica is 17 years old. She ran away from home and lived on the streets, where she made friends who stole, did drugs, and roamed the streets at all hours. Eventually, a friend invited her to attend Mosoj Yan. There she met people who listened to her and showed her respect. She returned home to live with her parents, began going to church, and returned to school. The support she receives at Mosoj Yan gives her encouragement to live a better life.

Neyla was 13 when she came to the shelter. After she was sexually abused by her father, a social worker brought Neyla to Mosoj Yan. At first, Neyla was shy and ashamed to talk about what had happened to her. But as she learned things such as cooking, baking, and computer skills, Neyla began to have hope. People at the shelter helped her understand God’s love for her. Now Neyla hopes to move forward into a brighter future.

Since 1991, Mosoj Yan has helped over 14,00 girls and women like Lizeth, Erica, and Neyla. Located in the central zone of the city of Cochabamba, Mosoj Yan focuses on children and adolescents in the peri-urban areas of the city, adolescents and young mothers living on the streets, and adolescent victims of sexual violence. Mosoj Yan means “new way,” and the ministry shows girls how to find a new path for their lives by following Christ. Mosoj Yan offers school support, technical training, nutritional assistance, and a Christian education. The ministry help girls and women make new choices for a new life.

Challenges

  • Bolivia is one of the most impoverished nations in South America, with over 60 percent of its residents living below the poverty line. The situation is worse in rural areas, where nearly three out of four Bolivians live in poverty.
  • Bolivian women have fewer opportunities for education than men, less access to healthcare, and have lower incomes. Even Bolivian women who can attain an education face steep discrimination. Low literacy levels make it difficult for indigenous women to learn Spanish, further limiting their opportunities for income. Lack of opportunity forces many women into prostitution. The average age of entry into prostitution is 16.
  • A study of 12 Latin American countries found that Bolivia had the highest rate of sexual violence against women of the nations surveyed. The report found that 53 percent of Bolivian women had experienced physical or sexual violence at the hands of a partner.

Opportunities

  • Mosoj Yan’s Restoration Shelter provides a safe haven for victims of violence and abuse. Girls and women at the shelter receive help to improve their physical, psychological, social, and spiritual health. Mosoj Yan helps residents gain the technical skills they need to support themselves and helps reintegrate them into society.
  • Mosoj Yan also works to prevent social problems through Friendship Clubs. These programs work with local churches and work to prevent problems such as addiction, bullying, and violence.

History

Margareth Anderson was an evangelical missionary from Scotland who lived and worked in Bolivia for many years. During her time in Bolivia, Margareth was moved by the plight of young girls and women working on the streets. At the time there were support systems and shelters in place for boys living on the streets, but girls lacked similar opportunities. Margareth proposed the creation of a center that would serve girls and women living in these precarious conditions.

Mosoj Yan became an Oakseed partner in 1999. Oakseed helps the ministry with school support, food supplies, and technical training, as well as addiction, bullying, and violence prevention.

Prayer Needs

  • Pray that the girls and teens who come to Mosoj Yan will change their hearts and follow Christ.
  • Pray for the workers to have patience, wisdom, and love as they share Christ with the girls at the shelter.
  • Pray that the young people who participate in Friendship Clubs will have the courage and strength to make good choices and stay free from addiction and violence.


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