Baskets of Love

Campaign Created by: Baskets of Love

The funds from this campaign will be received by Ester Rocha.

Goal: USD $6,000
Raised: USD $ 1,460

Imagine you are an immigrant that finds yourself living in one of the 2,600 slums of Brazil called a favela. Your makeshift home is surrounded by disease, poor sanitation, poverty, crime, gangs, and drugs. You have no idea where your next meal is going to come from. Worse still, you have small children with hungry tummies, but you just served your last little bit of rice for breakfast. You are stuck. Then imagine that while your children are out playing, they are befriended by a kind woman who asks to meet you. This woman quietly tells you she has food she wants to give you for free and it is such a large quantity of food that you will need help to carry it all. How could this possibly be? She gives you a ticket and tells you to meet her the next morning. The very next day your arms are filled with rice, beans, corn meal, salt, sugar, oil, pasta, peas, coffee, flour, even toiletries and laundry detergent- enough food that to last your family a full month- and on top of all these things, you were also given the word of God that tells you about the Giver of all good gifts.

This is exactly the story of one of one individual which was reached by Ester Rocha and the Baskets of Love ministry in June of this year. Ester seeks to reach the slums of Brazil with much needed food and the gospel of Jesus Christ for struggling families stuck in poverty. For 25 years she has been traveling annually to reach some of the 6% of Brazil's population that lives in a favela. In June 2022, through funds she saved and received as gifts, Ester was able to reach 480 people- 120 families- with enormous gifts of food that would last each family for one month. She was also able to distribute Bibles with each "basket of love". In March 2023, Ester was able to reach 100 families with your help!

Ester is planning a trip for August 2023. Her goal is to reach the same number of families with food to nourish their bodies and hope to sustain their souls. The funds raised through this campaign will go directly toward the amount of food Ester is able to purchase. She works with different contacts in Brazil and negotiates the best possible price for food in bulk. With the rise of global inflation, getting large quantities of food at reasonable prices has become a challenge. Any gifts earned through this campaign will enable her to buy more food to reach more families.

James 2:15-17 states if a fellow man or woman has no clothes to wear and nothing to eat, and they are told, “Good luck to you- I hope you’ll keep warm and find enough to eat”, and yet they are given nothing to meet their physical needs, there is no benefit. Please join Ester in reaching the most destitute of Brazil with food to meet their physical needs and the Living Water that they may never thirst again.

UPDATES

Update #9
March 3, 2024
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A new trip has been booked! WOOHOOO!! 🥳🙌🏻
Baskets of Love is headed back to Brazil May 30- June 26

Our goal is to raise enough funds to put together 100 Baskets of Love for the families in the favelas of Brazil. Ester works very hard networking with vendors to get the best possible prices. That being said, for what it costs an average family to eat out for the night, she can give families in need pantry staples, hygiene items, and a Bible! Can you imagine? $60 per basket is enough to feed a family of four for a month. Isn't that amazing? Please consider donating today and sharing this page with your friends. Baskets of Love is also on Facebook and you can also subscribe for new video updates on YouTube.

Please join us in prayer for the following:

  • Safety. This is always a major concern when traveling in the slums.
  • Family. Ester and her son will be traveling to Brazil this time while the remainder of her family stays home. The family remaining behind must function with only half the usual staff, so to speak, and that is an enormous job as well. Since Baskets of Love is definitely a family ministry, please keep the entire family in prayer. If you are in the area and would like to bring a meal to the family staying behind, please contact Ester at HERE.
  • Spiritual Attack. Trying to share the love of the Lord Jesus Christ does not go unnoticed by the enemy. Let's pray that our mighty God will protect the Rocha family and the entire team against discouragement, doubt, and despair.
  • The Team. Please pray for safety, strength, wisdom, patience, and unity for all those involved in making these trips possible, whether it is new volunteers traveling from the States or the family, volunteers, and church body that already live in Brazil.
  • The Families. We are praying that the Lord will prepare the hearts of the people in the favelas to not only receive this enormous physical blessing, but to receive the good news of the hope there is in the gospel of Jesus Christ! We know there is life-changing knowledge of our Lord and Savior. Pray that these families will see that power at work in the Baskets of Love team and to be restless until they find out where that power comes from.

Finally, we are praying for you! May God bless you and your family for being part of the Baskets of Love team!


Update #8
February 29, 2024
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New video! 
Check out the header to see the video from the trip at the end of summer 2023.

Update #7
October 11, 2023
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Ester returned from her late-summer trip with a glowing report! She and her team were able to distribute baskets to 107 families. That is equivalent to 38,520 meals! This was truly a work of the Lord as she had such a short window between trips. Yet God provided all of the necessary funds to reach these dear families with the gospel and food/hygiene items to meet their needs.

I am reminded of this verse in James:

James 2:15-16 If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,” but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit?

Baskets of Love seeks to embody the very heart of this verse- to spread the gospel while providing the things which are needed by these destitute families.

The new goal is to make the trip to Brazil twice a year! Ester is hoping to return to Brazil in February AND June 2024 so please consider donating today! It would definitely be ideal if we could have enough funds ahead of time for both trips. May God richly bless you for your prayer and support of this ministry to those in need.


Update #6
July 10, 2023
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The new trip has been booked!
Ester and her daughter will be traveling from
August 8 through September 3!

We ask for your prayers as this is a really short window of time to prepare for the trip. Nothing is too big for God! 

Here's what you can start praying for:

  • God's provision for all that is needed to reach as many families as possible with the Good News, food, and daily necessities.
  • Safety for Ester and anyone going to the favelas with her.
  • Logistics of travel, working with suppliers, assembling the "baskets", and connecting with the families that God wants to be reached.

We thank God for you! It is so encouraging to see God call others to help support and participate in the work He is doing in Brazil.

New trip slated for August 2023!
June 19, 2023
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We are so excited to announce that a new trip is being planned for 2023! Because flights appear to be more affordable this summer, we are hoping to book tickets for August!! Please join us in prayer that God will once more provide the funds needed to bless the families in the favelas of Brazil.

Each basket costs approximately $60. Our goal is to take 100 baskets of love to those families.

We will continue to fundraise using this same page so past donors can continue to be updated.

Many thanks for your continued love and support. Check out our new header with a brand-new video of the March 2023 trip! 

2023 March Trip Summary
June 4, 2023
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It has been a while since our last update but with summer approaching and schedules lightening, it is time we publish an update from Ester's trip in March!

Ester was able to visit Brazil from March 8th to the 29th. Praise be to God! She was able to reach her target of 300 total bags of supplies that included three full bags of food, 3 liters of milk, fresh tomatoes, and Bibles to reach 100 families. These supplies will provide a family of four with meals for one month- that is 36,000 meals! Incredibly, she received the last of the needed donations en route to Brazil which enabled her to reach the full number of families with baskets of love.

Trip highlights:

  • First stop: Sao Paulo. Ester's cousin Paulo Romeiro is the pastor of a church there. He was able to take her to a Bible district where she was able to acquire Bibles for a very reasonable price.
  • Next stop: Piracicaba. Negotiations for and purchase of food and supplies.
  • Hitting a snag. Nearly half of the purchased bags that contained the hygienic products had to be returned. The laundry softener leaked and damaged other contents including toilet paper, soap, and toothpaste.
  • Local support. Saving money on fresh food, Ester's sister Luana orchestrated a donation of tomatoes from a local farmer.
  • Milk on sale. Local supermarkets were scoured to find the best price on milk- and it was on sale!
  • Four days in the favelas. Two days were spent selecting families and two more in food distribution in nine different favelas.
  • Blessing the body of Christ. Ester was also able to coordinate with another local pastor to donate baskets to those in need in his community.
  • Family help. Most of the volunteers assisting in this effort were Ester's own family members along with Pastor David Campos who has helped for the last 10 years.

Praise the Lord for all He was able to accomplish during this trip!

Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever. 1 Chron. 16:34

Another trip this year is in the early planning stages so please join us in prayer for the following:

  1. Finding volunteers is difficult. It is hard to move forward with the distribution of food when there is uncertainty about (how) many people will be available to help. Please pray that the Lord will even now be putting it on the hearts of believers in Brazil to help Ester spread the love of the Lord Jesus Christ.
  2. This last trip exposed a substantial increase in the number of families plagued by drug addiction. One side effect of crack use is letting the house fall into disrepair and not caring for trash accumulation inside. The children are the ones that suffer the worst consequences of addiction and are faced with poverty, malnourishment, abandonment, lack of hygiene, and physical and mental abuse. Please pray for freedom from addiction and that the enemy would not be able to gain ground in this area.
  3. The provision of financial support in a fairly short amount of time. Pray that the Lord will guide and direct Ester to reach the number of families He wants her to reach.

Thank you for partnering with us on this journey! We couldn't do it without your support.

 

Exciting news!!
January 9, 2023
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Ester was able to book her flights for her trip! Hip Hip HOORAY!!

She is scheduled to fly out March 8 and return on March 29.

Please join us in praying for the following:

  • that God will supply the remainder of the funds she is hoping to raise. This will allow her to provide more food and resources in each of the "baskets" she builds. Please pray that God will supply every need according to His great grace and mercy.
  • for health leading up to the trip and that all the travel arrangements will go smoothly.
  • for each individual who will be receiving a "basket of love" from the Lord. Pray that their hearts will be open to the gospel message. Pray that God will bring the exact people that need to receive one across Ester's path.
  • for safety when entering the slums and delivering assistance that can only reach a limited number of people.
  • for protection from people who are in the slums perpetuating evil.
  • for the church that Ester is partnering with. Pray that God will supply the resources they need to continue discipleship with any of the basket recipients that may seek further spiritual guidance.

Thank you so much for partnering with us to make this possible!

Fall Update
October 24, 2022
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God has not yet opened doors for Ester to travel to Brazil in the originally expected time frame. Naturally one does not want to get ahead of God's provision and timing! Several factors have come up that have made it clear that the original plan of traveling in late October/early November is not what God has for now. We are now praying that He will fling wide the doors of opportunity and support so that Baskets of Love can take to the field in the spring of 2023. We are so grateful for God's unmistakable guidance. Please continue to pray for His will to be done as His timing is perfect; for His provision do the work He has for those in poverty; and for His guidance to cover each and every aspect of planning this trip. Feel free to share this link with friends and family via email or social media. Thank you!

New video!
August 18, 2022
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Hi there! We were able to post a new video! You'll now find arrows next to the header video that will allow you to see the footage from the June 2022 trip. Thanks to Koryn Morton for putting the video together.

Please prayerfully consider sharing this project with your friends by passing on the link via email, Facebook, or Twitter. Thank you!

PRAYER REQUESTS

  • Please pray for God's timing for the next trip. The initial plan is to travel in October, but at present air travel tickets are too high.