In June 2014, I traveled with youth groups from Holy Spirit Episcopal Church and St. Mark's Episcopal Church, both in Houston, to the beautiful country of Costa Rica.

There, these wonderful young people worked with Hogar Escuela (literally "Home School"), on the outskirts of San José, the nation's capital.  This school is really special:  it is designed to support to mothers of a nearby neighbourhood, one that suffers from severe poverty.  The school provides a safe, supportive, loving place for children, ages 6 months to 12 years old, who receive hot meals and the equivalent of a private school education, while their mothers work or receive an education of their own -- all at no cost to their families.  It's really stunning, the work that Hogar Escuela is doing:  despite the fact that many of the stories of these children are incredibly difficult, there's no denying that these kids are absolutely thriving in school -- engaged, developing strong relationships with each other, not to mention their smiling with beautiful, bright faces.

These are some of my favourite images from this trip.  I can't wait to get back to visit again (and you can read more of my impressions here).