A few weeks ago, Kate and I had a chance to spend some time with Eloy, one of the graduates of Scripture Union’s Girasoles program. He is actually now working full time as one of the caregivers for the other boys for the home in Kusi where he grew up, but he was spending some time in Lima on vacation.
We had to opportunity to do something that was a first for all of us – go glo-bowling in Lima. We had a great time, and I even broke 100 points in a game for the first time ever (pretty sad, I know). We even started our third game with all strikes and we were pretty proud to be the only people in the entire bowling alley who were not using the bumpers! In the end, we came out tied. Kate, Eloy, and myself each won one game.
Afterwards we grabbed some dinner and continued to have a great night. As we were talking with Eloy, I realized that his job with Scripture Union is the first time that he has had a steady employment with a monthly paycheck. We took the opportunity to talk to him about finances. Peru’s economy has been growing steadily for the past number of years, and that is a good thing; but at the same time that means that more and more people have access to credit for the first time, and I have seen a number of people run in to trouble trying to purchase things and taking out loans that they can’t afford. Kate and I are not financial planners by any means, but we did share some simple advice about trying to save some money each month instead of spending it all and about not taking loans or credit to buy things like a TV or a new pair of shoes. Interest rates can easily surpass 100%. Eloy was very interested in sitting down and thinking through some of this, and he mentioned that he had never really thought about the importance of saving and planning.
It was a blessing to spend the evening with him, and it was a privilege to be at least a small help. Please continue to keep Eloy and all of the other older boys in your prayers as they begin to move on from our program and look towards their future. Pray that God would guide their steps, and pray specifically that they would learn to be good stewards of the resources that God blesses them with.