The Caleb Mission project has registered successive historic numbers year after year in the north-central region of the state of Espírito Santo, and in 2023, it was no different. More than 5,000 people signed up to be partial or full volunteers throughout the month of January. The number exceeded the expectations of the Adventist Church in the territory, which was 4,000 volunteers.
The actions range from donating blood in order to supply the state's blood centers to the maintenance and revitalization of public spaces. Officially, the project began on Sabbath, January 14, but several groups had already mobilized even before the program officially started.
"This number is the result of a youth committed to social and spiritual well-being. It is a work that has been built up over the past years, and that is why the young people respond so positively," explains Pastor Filipe Oliveira, one of the people responsible for the initiative in Espírito Santo.
The army of 5,100 volunteers is divided into more than 100 teams. In Serra, young people from the Nova Almeida neighborhood did a lot in a short time. They cleaned the grounds of a day care center, donated food baskets, distributed water during the Reis Magos race, and donated blood.
In Linhares, Caleb missionaries from Bebedouro go house to house to identify those interested in Bible studies and also see what can be done for the residents of the Rio Quartel neighborhood. There, they have even renovated the space that will be the stage for the evenings of lectures and Bible studies with guests. The group also plans to clean houses of residents affected by the floods caused by the heavy rains in the region.
In Nova Venécia, the first official Caleb Mission weekend is going to shake up the community. The point people in the São Cristovão neighborhood will provide haircuts, legal advice, dental consultation, and a solidarity clothesline. The regions of Boa Esperança and Pinheiros will promote a health fair for the community.
These actions are usually the first to occur in the Caleb Mission territories, explains Claudiane Faria, organizer of the efforts in Nova Venécia. "When we do these actions, we can understand what the real needs of the region are. We gain the trust of the community and take the opportunity to ask what they need to be done for them there."