Project HOPE: Aiding kids, remembering a missionary

Taellor, pictured here,
Taellor Stearns, pictured here with the kids, passed away last summer but will be remembered.

Just last summer, Project H.O.P.E. said goodbye to an energetic, 19-year-old missionary to Nicaragua who passed away. And, just as the non-profit has done throughout its history, it turned tragedy into a positive.

The Taellor House, named after Ozark High School graduate Taellor Stearns, will serve as an outreach to single mothers and their children, providing after-school care for children along with various programs for mothers.

In fact, it is one of the many ways in which the Springfield-based Project H.O.P.E. has turned its energy toward helping poverty-stricken Nicaragua.

Likewise, the Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr Pepper is proud to call Project H.O.P.E. one of its charities again this year. The tournament is part of the PGA Tour’s annual Web.com Tour stop in Springfield and has generated almost $12 million for children’s charities in its 25-year history – including a record $1 million-plus last year.

“My people are not poor because they don’t have things,” said Pastor Jerson Gonzales, the in-country director of Project H.O.P.E. “My people are poor because they don’t have education.”

Here’s your chance to assist Project H.O.P.E. again this year through the tournament:

SUPPORTING THE PCCC = SUPPORTING CHARITIES

Buy a $25 TLC Properties Charity Sweepstakes ticket and all the money goes to your favorite charity -- and you also could win this 2015 Ford Mustang.
Buy a $25 TLC Properties Charity Sweepstakes ticket and all the money goes to your favorite charity — and you also could win this 2015 Ford Mustang.
  • HELP PROJECT H.O.P.E: To assist the non-profit in any way, call 417-886-4674 or visit its website at www.pjhope.org.
  • FOR GOLF FANS, WIN PRIZES: The purchase of a $25 TLC Properties Charity Sweepstakes ticket serves as a four-day tournament pass, but that’s just a start. You’re also entered to win daily prizes during the tournament as well as grand prizes of $10,000 and a 2015 Ford Mustang.
  • TICKET REVENUE GOES WHERE: Contact the local charity of your choice such as Project H.O.P.E, simply because they receive revenue directly from those TLC Properties Charity Sweepstakes tickets marked with their names.
  • BUSINESS SPONSORSHIPS: Businesses can support the PCCC through various sponsorships, such as the daily newsletter, website or through several events such as a dozen Pro-Ams. Additionally, restaurants, clothing stores and entertainment stops and such are asked to donate a gift card with at least a $25 value in the name of your charity of choice to benefit them in the Golf Ball Charity Auction.
  • WHEN, WHERE: The tournament is Aug. 7-17 at Highland Springs Country Club, with the pros playing beginning Aug. 13. Contact the PCCC staff at 417-887-3400.

About Project H.O.P.E.

ProjectHope-girl

Project H.O.P.E. was established in 1998 after a group of friends felt called to help the poor in Nicaragua. Its humble beginning consisted of the founding directors and their wives traveling to Nicaragua and camping in the mountains while building houses and working with rural pastors.

Call it some effort by the founding directors of Kim Bradley, Roger Lea, Rick Bryant and Larry White.

Now, more than 800 people travel with Project H.O.P.E. each year. A full-functioning base camp, H.O.P.E. Central Nicaragua was built in 2006 as a place for short-term mission teams to stay and an office for in-country staff. Project H.O.P.E. will finish construction at H.O.P.E. Central Haiti in early 2016.

The non-profit has a range of missions, including for children. For instance, Project H.O.P.E:

  • In Nicaragua, has built several preschools in rural areas.
  • Provided scholarships for children to attend schools.
  • Partners with Convoy of Hope and facilitates a daily feeding station to those that live inside the city dump in Ciudad Sandino, Nicaragua.
  • Will soon work with an orphanage in Haiti to provide vocational skills to the older children in the orphanage.

And then there is Taellor’s House.

You see, many school-age children are unable to attend school because they are taking care of their younger siblings while their mother is at work. Taellor’s House will provide care for preschool children as well, allowing the older children to attend school.

Children will receive lunch (Monday-Friday), tutoring, biblical teaching, English classes, a school uniform and school supplies. Mothers will receive biblical parenting skills, vocational skills and help securing a job.

Taellor’s House will begin operation in 2016. Internship opportunities will also be available for girls over the age of 18 who are interested in long-term mission work.

“Taellor had a passion for children and was excited about the children’s center project,” says Ashley Hill, Community Relations for Project H.O.P.E. “It was only fitting that the center was named after her.”