Care Teams consist of several people who meet regularly with individuals or families that find themselves in crisis situations. Care team members provide resources and support by listening, praying, and sharing the load of carrying one another’s burdens.
A Story of Hope: Rogelio Valenzuela
Rogelio (“Roy”), an ex-gang member and former prisoner, was struggling with multiple challenges when we met him in 2006 in the neighborhood. He
was homeless, living out of his broken-down car, separated from his wife, and all the while trying to parent three young boys.
Roy’s immediate need was for a roof over his head. We tried to find a homeless shelter in the city that could house Roy and his young children, but the shelters were only taking in women at the time. We decided to place Roy and his children in a cheap motel. A group of men volunteered to transport the boys to and from school since no school bus was available. We then directed him to social service resources to help him find relief for some of the basic necessities his family needed.
Over the course of five years, a team of people walked with Roy as he struggled not only with the challenges of being a single parent, but also personally battling temptations with drugs and alcohol that periodically led to relapses and family chaos. A few years ago we helped him obtain an apartment in close proximity to the church. We connected him to a men’s group that provided ongoing support and prayer. A couple of guys offered him side jobs doing construction and labor work. Another person helped Roy obtain his driver’s license and purchase a vehicle.
Over the last couple of years, Roy has made remarkable changes in his life. He has reunited with his wife, been drug-free, stayed connected with his small group, and has been very involved with parenting and investing in his three junior high-age boys. Currently, he is coaching a baseball team in an under- resourced neighborhood and leading a book study on spiritual formation for a group of men. His dream is to someday go into ministry to help others like himself.