Service benefits children and communities around South America

Donations, service projects and efforts follows the teachings of Jesus Christ

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints recently made donations of food, clothing, supplies and funding in several countries in South America. Members of the Church and their friends also joined in service projects and other efforts in their communities.

Read some examples below from Argentina, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Uruguay.

Food and blood donations in Argentina

Volunteers unload large pallets and boxes of food items in Bahía Blanca, Argentina.
Volunteers and members of the Church help unload food donations for those in need after a strong storm in Bahía Blanca, Argentina, in December 2023. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

A news release dated Jan. 2, from the Church’s Argentina Newsroom explained that the Church donated food for people affected by a strong December storm in Buenos Aires.

The storm caused deaths, injuries and substantial material damages. The donations from the Church allowed more than 400 people to receive food.

Bahía Blanca Argentina Stake President Juan C. Moura recognized the work of the large number of volunteers and Church members who helped in loading and unloading food.

In December 2023, members of the Church donated blood to help the Churruca Visca Hospital in Buenos Aires. The blood drive was held at the Banfield 1st Ward meetinghouse of the Buenos Aires Argentina Banfield Stake.

Drinking water in Bolivia

Six men wearing floral wreaths remove a colorful blanket from a new water tap in Chua Cocani, Bolivia.
Men remove a blanket from a new water tap to unveil a drinking water system built by the Church and Choice Humanitarian in Chua Cocani, Bolivia, on Jan. 25, 2024. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The Church worked with Choice Humanitarian to deliver a water system to the Compi community in Chua Cocani, Bolivia, with an official opening on Jan. 25. The effort included digging trenches and installing pipes and other equipment to bring the water to the community.

The water system will allow around 250 residents to have access to safe water for cooking and drinking. A water committee in the community will be in charge of taking care of the system. The president of the water committee thanked the Church in the Aymara language for making the project a reality.

Meanwhile in Bolivia, nearly 200 members of the La Paz Bolivia Alto San Pedro Stake took part in Light the World service activities in December 2023 to bless their communities. They invited children to an activity with games, songs, stories and treats — more than 300 children from different areas benefited, reported the Church’s Bolivia Newsroom.

Also in December, the Potosí Bolivia Stake organized a fair where they donated blood and shared resources from the Church about self-reliance, family history, food storage and more.

“Light the World is a blessing to us as it allows us to share the gospel, not only by word but also by example. We are very happy to see the impact that this activity had on our friends,” said Potosí Stake President Alex Arce Apaza.

Service and donations bless children in Colombia

Members of the Church wearing yellow Helping Hands vests celebrate with a large group of children in Cartagena, Colombia.
Members of the Cartagena Colombia Stake donate toys to children in need in Cartagena, Colombia, Dec. 6, 2023. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Members of the Cartagena Colombia Stake collected more than 140 toys for children in need in December 2023. Primary children included letters and drawings with the donations for three community organizations around the city of Cartagena.

Stake Primary President Johana González Torrenegra shared her feelings in a news release from the Church’s Colombia Newsroom: “It was a unique and invaluable experience, where we were able to brighten the hearts of many children and be able to share that love that Jesus Christ has with them.”

Church members from the Maicao and Riohacha Branches — part of the Colombia Barranquilla Mission — of the Church made and collected gifts for children in the hospital. The effort included volunteers from the Primary, Young Women and Relief Society organizations. Many volunteers went with the donations to the hospital to deliver the gifts.

Members of the Barranquilla Colombia Paraíso Stake served at hospitals in their area as well in December.

Helping children with cancer in Ecuador

People wearing yellow Helping Hands vests stand by large bags of plastic soda caps and lids in Ecuador.
Members of the Durán Ecuador South Stake show some of the plastic soda caps and lids they collected as part of a fundraiser to help children with cancer in the country in December 2023. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The Durán Ecuador South Stake joined the Ser Feliz Foundation to collect soda lids for recycling. The money made by the effort went toward helping children with cancer in the country, explained a Church news release from Ecuador.

The stake and ward Primary presidencies worked together with the bishops and stake presidency on the initiative. Each Sunday, members of each ward brought the lids they collected that week to Church.

“The acceptance of the membership was incredible. ... a large amount was collected and donated to the foundation,” said Stake President Sandro M. Navarro.

Donation to food bank and child care center in Peru

Church leaders and Peru leaders sit at a red table with a Peru flag and a banner behind them of the Church’s name as a donation is made to the Peru Food Bank.
Elder Jorge F. Zeballos, General Authority Seventy and president of the South America Northwest Area, seated second from right at the table, speaks at an event marking a donation from the Church to the Peru Food Bank on Jan. 26, 2024. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

At the end of January, the Church made a large donation to the Peru Food Bank. Elder Jorge F. Zeballos, General Authority Seventy and president of the South America Northwest Area, and César Hooker, area manager for the Church’s Welfare and Self-Reliance Services, presented the donation.

The money will help buy nutritional foods and provide training and necessary equipment at the food bank’s soup kitchens around Peru, explained Peru Newsroom.

On Jan. 22, the Church was recognized at a ribbon cutting for a new kitchen area at the Pérez Aranibar child care center in Lima. Welfare and Self-Reliance Services managers and missionaries attended. The center welcomes children who are infants through 18-year-olds. The Church and other benefactors equipped the center’s kitchen with new equipment.

Soup kitchen equipment in Uruguay

Four Church and government officials look at a new plaque thanking the Church at a soup kitchen in La Paz, Uruguay.
Local Church leaders receive a plaque from La Paz and Canelones government representatives thanking the Church for its donation to a soup kitchen in La Paz, Canelones, Uruguay, in January 2024. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

A news release on Jan. 10 said the Church donated new equipment for a soup kitchen in the city of La Paz in Canelones, Uruguay.

The stove, microwave, freezer and refrigerator will help the soup kitchen serve 450 people a day.

Montevideo Uruguay North Stake President Martin Orlando joined city and government officials at the ceremony. President Orlando told the authorities that the Church is always willing to collaborate in initiatives that support those most in need, following the teachings of Jesus Christ. 

Service for those in need in Venezuela

Severl adults and children smile at a plaza in Caracas, Venezuela, during a service project.
Members of the Caracas Venezuela Los Teques Stake prepare to share food and gifts as part of a larger service project around areas of Caracas, Venezuela, on Dec. 24, 2023. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Members of the Caracas Venezuela Los Teques Stake and their friends gave food, clothing, shoes and toys to people in need in several areas around Caracas, Venezuela, in December, reported the Church’s Venezuela Newsroom.

They also served children and their guardians at a children’s home in the city of San Diego. Besides giving food and gifts, the Latter-day Saints cleaned and spent time with the residents to share the love of the Savior with them.

Related Stories
Chile wildfires: Members and neighbors affected; full-time missionaries safe
Photo gallery: See how the Church and its members are helping people across Latin America
Recent Church wheelchair donation commemorates 16 years of partnership in Argentina
Church donates humanitarian aid to help children and families in Peru, Argentina
Subscribe for free and get daily or weekly updates straight to your inbox
The three things you need to know everyday
Highlights from the last week to keep you informed