I am from Wooster, Ohio. I was raised in a Christian family all my life and I repented and accepted Christ as my Savior when I was 5 years old. Shortly after, I began to feel called to be a missionary as an adult. I first heard about Handfuls of Hope in the spring of 2016 while living and working in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. They were seeking teachers to serve in their summer school program. After speaking with Donald Coords, I fell in love with the mission and vision of Handfuls of Hope and since I was not working in Santo Domingo the next school year, I happily agreed to begin working as a missionary for them.
My position at Handfuls of Hope is the Sponsorship Program Coordinator and also assisting the director and coordinators in the school. My favorite Bible verses are James 1:2-4 and 2 Corinthians 4:7-12. I enjoy working with Handfuls of Hope because I get to see the Lord working through me each day to better the lives of the children and adults of this community. This community has become my home and I love being able to live and serve with my wonderful brothers and sisters in Christ of my church in Catalina. I am passionate about reaching the people of Catalina and beyond with the Gospel of Christ and also with quality education. In the future I would like to become fluent in Spanish and receive more education to better serve in this ministry. My hobbies are singing and listening to Christian music, reading, and spending time with my friends and the children of my neighborhood.
I am from La Romana, Dominican Republic. I became a Christian when I was 16 years old. At the young age of 5, I met a wonderful man named Don Coords who came into my life, ministering to my family and me. Seventeen years later I learned about Handfuls of Hope and began serving alongside their summer mission trips. I began interning with Handfuls of Hope in May, 2016. I work as the security guard for the school, translating and assisting with groups, and whatever else they need me to do. My favorite Bible verse is Philippians 4:13. I love working with our Isaiah 58 ministry. While living in Catalina I enjoy being part of the church community in Catalina. I am part of the Pastor’s seminary class and I hope to use the knowledge learned in this to better serve the Lord. I am passionate about serving God through music. My hobbies are listening and singing to Christian music, playing guitar, and exercising.
Juan Yan Alcantara, (a.k.a Jose)
I am from Catalina, Dominican Republic. I accepted Christ as my Savior March 27, 2006. I first heard about Handfuls of Hope the same year I became a Christian through my church in Catalina. I began helping them every year with the groups and later as a translator. I began interning with Handfuls of Hope during the summer of 2016. My current position is Maintenance for the school and other buildings of Handfuls of Hope. My favorite passage of Scripture is Romans 6:18. I love working for Handfuls of Hope and to be able to meet and serve with my brothers in Christ from the United States. I am passionate about helping the people of my community and I would like to be a dentist to be able to assist in the medical needs of my people. I enjoy playing volleyball, basketball, and baseball in my free time with my friends here in Catalina.
Edwin Julio Yuden
I am from La Romana, Dominican Republic. I grew up in the church and always attended. When I was 16 years old, my mother told me that I could not only attend church but I needed to accept Christ. It was then that I made the decision to accept Christ as my Savior. The Lord has done so many things for me since I was young until now. He has brought me through many hard times, allowed me to complete my schooling, but most importantly allowed me to be saved through Him. I have known Donald Coords since I was 2 years old and he has been ministering to my family since then. Throughout the years my family and I have worked with many different groups that have come with Handfuls of Hope. In May 2016, my brother Erik began working full-time with this organization and in the spring of 2017 I was happy to accept the opportunity to work with Handfuls as well. My position is the head of finances for the school and missionary house. I love working with Handfuls of Hope because of the help they give to people in need. My favorite Bible verse is John 3:16. My passions are sharing Jesus Christ and sports such as baseball and basketball. In the future I want to continue learning more about the Lord.
Onel Venant (a.k.a. James)
I was born in Puerto Principe, Haiti and lived there until I was 17 years old. I was forced to move to the Dominican Republic after Haiti experienced the earthquake in 2010, because my mother wanted me to be safe and have a better life. One year later, my dear mother passed away. In this time I was feeling very lost and alone and I began to feel the need to accept Christ as my Savior. In June 19, 2011, I went to the church in Catalina and accepted Christ as my Savior. I first heard of Handfuls of Hope through my church in Catalina. I began helping with the different groups that came in whatever way I could. I loved the work of Handfuls of Hope in this community and had a great desire to help them with the wonderful work they are doing for the Lord. In the spring of 2017, Donald Coords asked me to consider working as a missionary with Handfuls of Hope and I was thrilled to accept. My current position with Handfuls of Hope is working with our Isaiah 58 ministry and also assisting with the missions groups. I am excited to be used in these ministries to help bring more souls to the Lord. This is my first time working in a ministry and I can already see how important the work is that we are doing for the Lord and I would like to continue that work. My favorite part about working with Handfuls of Hope is the love and joy it gives me. I love everything about living in Catalina. The people here are so loving and it is a very peaceful community to live in. My favorite Bible verse is Psalms 91:1. I am passionate about studying and learning, especially studying the Bible and learning new languages, working for the Lord, music, and football. In the future, I would like to continue preaching the Word of God, helping my dear family, and one day visit the United States.