Our TeamWe invite you to join us as we grow and fill the world with love and grace
PASTOR AUGUSTO CHAVEZ
Augusto Chavez is the glue of this ministry. He has 18 years experience in Haiti as leader and missionary having built numerous churches and schools. He preaches at churches and in the streets as well as ministering to the children while they are at school. Augusto is the financial administrator, constantly crunching numbers doing his part to make your dollars stretch for the multitudes. Augusto takes care of the student enrollment as well as hiring the teachers. He manages the team of 60 teachers and volunteers and oversees all construction projects as God gives him the visions. Augusto carries the weight of the world on his shoulders but does so with much love and grace!
My name is Victor Augusto. I was born in Sullana, the province of Piura in Peru to the parents of Pablo Agustín y Juana More. I have 5 siblings. I lived in Lima, Peru until the age of 28. I had a profound encounter with Jesus Christ on January 31, 1989. I made the decision to love and serve Him forever and always give Him the best of me.
With God’s help, I have traveled to several countries studying, as a missionary and preaching God’s word. In the year 2000, I had the opportunity to visit Haiti for the first time as I was returning from a term as missionary in Cuba. It was then and there that seeing the misery, hunger and need had a great impact on my life. I saw neglected and abandoned children. That was when Ministerio Amor y Gracia was formed. I bought bread for the children which they devoured. We decided to open our first school in the city of Ounaminthe, Haiti with 30 children. I rented space to teach the children. During the day I taught and in the evenings I left to preach and look for resources to feed the children. We continue growing and adding more children to the ministry where we teach them Bible and give them secular education, food, water and much more. In 2005, I purchased land of more than 1,000 squared meters in Ounaminthe. By God’s grace and with the help of friends and organizations and working personally, we have been able to get to where we are today. I have been the principal leader of Ministerio Amor y Gracia since the year 2000.
In 2008, we had approximately 200 children. It was at this time I had the opportunity to meet a young and beautiful servant of God, Dedra Key. She made consistent missionary trips to help and support the ministry. Thanks be to God, in October, 2013, Dedra and I married. By the grace of God and with the help of friends, family, churches, spiritual and other work, we currently have more than 785 children in our ministry within 6 schools. Together with my wife, we are at the forefront of the ministry leading a team of 60 teachers and volunteers.
I want to thank God first and foremost as without Him, none of this would have been possible; I thank my wife for her unconditional love and support, giving herself completely without reserve; to everyone who helps us directly or indirectly. We ask that you continue to help us to make this world a better place, not with words but with action. We invite you to join us as we grow and fill the world with love and grace.
DEDRA KEY DE CHAVEZ
Dedra Key de Chavez works in the details. She oversees the sponsored children program, ensuring their benefits are delivered as well as sending updates and correspondences to sponsors. Dedra coordinates the diet for the children and oversees the moringa project which is incorporated into the meals. She also nurses children and neighbors back to health and takes them to the local clinic when their needs are greater than she can handle. Dedra teaches Bible stories at the schools and other classes in the community. She is in charge of clothing and other donations we receive. Dedra has overseen the building of new homes for two families in need. She works alongside her husband, Augusto, in all areas and things God lays on their hearts.
My name is Dedra Key De Chavez. I was born and raised in a Christian family in north Georgia. I accepted Christ in 1989, yet it wasn’t until 2002 that I fell in love with Christ and developed a personal relationship with him. With this fire in my heart for the Lord, I became active in my church.
In December 2007, I had the opportunity to go on a mission trip to Haiti. My father had previously been, therefore, I had seen pictures and heard stories of the need and poverty. I expected to go and share the gospel, bless others, and change their little piece of the world. Truth be told, I was the one that was blessed. My life was forever changed by people and a community that gripped my heart. Photos and stories that I had seen did not accurately portray what I experienced, smelled, saw, and felt. These people were not living. They were existing at best. I returned to the states with a different perspective on life and the desire to help Haiti. I often returned to Haiti with groups of missionaries working with Pastor Augusto Chavez.
In January 2010, when the tragic earthquake hit Haiti, I returned once again. This is the time God truly began calling me to work in Haiti and to a purpose greater than myself. In February 2013, I made a very difficult decision out of obedience to this calling to leave my family and all I had known. I began a journey with Jesus to serve Him and those who held my heart in Haiti. God chose to bless me through my obedience with a love I’ve never known in the human form. He allowed my path to cross with Victor Augusto’s through missions and after years of friendship, our hearts connected and love bloomed where I never thought it could. In October, 2013, Victor Augusto and I joined our hearts and lives in matrimony. I am blessed beyond measure to be Augusto’s help-meet and know he is my chosen one.
Today, we are blessed to serve with our team of teachers and volunteers with over 785 children in six schools. We give thanks to God first and foremost and are grateful for the support from friends, family and family in Christ whose support makes serving full time on the mission field possible. I never imagined working in a fourth world country or being married to a Peruvian, living so far from my family. Yet, I’ve learned that we must submit to God’s plans not our own or others’ plans for our lives. Living in the center of God’s will, I have found true joy.
Proverbs 19:21 Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.
Our team of 51 teachers are the heart of our ministry. They work hard daily teaching from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m. Our teachers are our greatest asset and vital to our children’s education and hope for a brighter future. They provide half hour of Bible in the morning followed by secular education. Each of our teachers go beyond the call of duty any time it is asked of them when we have special activities or missionary groups. Two of our teachers were among the first students to attend our schools. They have come full circle! Average Haitian salary is $40.00 per month. Our teachers earn between $75.00 – $100.00 per month. For their role in educating our children and the next generation, we feel this is inadequate. However, they accept and teach with love and grace abounding.
Our team of 17 volunteers are the core of behind the scenes. This team consists of women and men who work in many areas of the ministry. Three of them work relentlessly cooking for our 785 children and often street kids. Two men are our runners you might say. They drive Augusto and Dedra everywhere on their motos as well as deliver food/water from the main school to the five satellite schools. They often run to make purchases for construction needs and make food runs when we have missionary groups. If we need to take children to the clinic, they are our guys! We love having young Iviola on our team. She works with the moringa garden and loves to shadow Dedra assisting in all that she can. The remainder of our volunteers work serving food, washing dishes, helping with sponsored children activities, construction, lifting, fetching water, keeping our schools clean and our missionaries/founders safe. When we have missionaries they work dusk til beyond dark and always with a servant spirit. This crew is extraordinary and like our teachers, have jewels in their eternal crowns! All of our teachers and volunteers are paid and understand their offering depends on donations we receive and what we have to offer. We are blessed to have them on team Jesus and as the backbone of Love and Grace Ministry, Inc.