Over the years, we have discovered that there are two different groups of people who struggle with addiction. One group is composed of people who realize the impact of their addictions and they want to change. Often, these people have homes, jobs, and relationships or families.
The second group live in a world of hopelessness; their lives have been shattered and ripped away. Most often, they live and sleep on the streets submerged within the hunger and pain of their addiction. They are what society considers beggars, scums, the lost. In their world, they have become trapped in the conformity of the streets, they may live in a completely deteriorated state and go weeks without bathing. They wander the streets knowing where they can beg for coins or receive a free meal. They are consumed by the demands of their addictions. The world of the streets is the final stage of their lives and many die this way.
The ministry, which would become Fundación Quien Soy Yo, started in 2012 as a support group for people who were aware of their addictions and wanted to change. Built on God's principles beginning with, "love God above all else and love your neighbor as yourself", the support group used dialogue to help its members to understand themselves and their relationship to others within the Nicaraguan culture. The regular meetings took place at Tres Mundos, a community hall in the heart of downtown Granada. The love and acceptance that the support group promoted led many to transformed lives through the saving grace of Jesus Christ. They found strength to escape their addictions, returned to their old professions, joined churches, and restored or developed new relationships, even getting married. Many stayed in the support group as volunteers helping others and giving back what they had received from God.
By 2014, the support group, which still had no name experienced a shift from one people group to another. It was there that the Holy Spirit stepped in and gave a new twist to this ministry. It all started when we began leaving the doors open throughout our meetings and people from the streets began to wander in. It became clear that God wanted us to deal with a different clientele, he wanted us to help the lost, because they are His people too. We were challenged by the smell in the air, sometimes by the behaviors, but we knew we could not reject them nor deny them our support. Each night, when they were gone, we prayed to God, asking for guidance and wisdom in dealing with this situation.
Each week the Holy Spirit brought more of the homeless. Some arrived in bad condition. It was amazing though, to see those who had previously joined the group and had already been transformed by the Lord now eagerly volunteering, stepping up to help those who came from the streets with food.
This became the dream; the image God gave us for this ministry. At the beginning of 2015, we registered Quien Soy Yo Canada-Nicaragua as a charitable foundation. We have been granted legal status by the Nicaraguan government. The ministry for the homeless still takes place in a public space called Tres Mundos. Since then, we stay focused on the homeless with the help of volunteers that God prepared in the process of those previous years.