For the Love of Mateo

A registered 501(C)3 Non Profit organization to help benefit orphanages, schools, after- school programs, and many outreach projects throughout Guatemala.

Email: valerieedwards@suddenlink.net

Phone: 913-206-4322

Legal Non Profit #: 46-0576571

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See. Feel. Be the Difference Yourself.

FTLOM has several different outreach projects which we support throughout Guatemala. Each mission trip is led by a dedicated mission leader who plans the agenda of projects and activities for each week-long trip while working in tandem with Valerie Edwards and Claudia Flores, the in-country assistant.  Our dedicated team of volunteers are the heart who deliver our missions of love to children and families of need.

Upcoming "Missions of Love".

DECEMBER 3-9, 2019

$700USD

$350 deposit & $350 final payment options also available at checkout

JUNE 21-27, 2020

$700USD

$350 deposit & $350 final payment options also available at checkout

DECEMBER 7-12, 2020

$700USD

$350 deposit & $350 final payment options also available at checkout

MARCH 22-28, 2020

Led by Anita Cape

$700USD

$350 deposit & $350 final payment options also available at checkout

JUNE 27-JULY 3, 2020

$700USD

$350 deposit & $350 final payment options also available at checkout

JUNE 7-12, 2020

Led by Amy Mosser

$700USD

$350 deposit & $350 final payment options also available at checkout

AUGUST 19-25, 2020

$700USD

$350 deposit & $350 final payment options also available at checkout

Planning and scheduling of mission trips begins six months in advance. Limited spots are available for logistical reasons but also to ensure you receive the best experience possible. 

To secure your spot, your 50% deposit ($350 USD) is due six months in advance, with the remainder due three months before departure. 

 

Have questions? Read the FAQs or get in touch!

 
 

Let's Make A Change.

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"My fiancé and I have been sponsoring children, now a total of three beautiful souls, through For the Love of Mateo for several years. I first had the privilege of traveling to Guatemala to the orphanage FTLOM supports in June of 2014 and that is when my heart was forever changed."

 

E. Bonkowski & J. Ruby 

Meet the Mission Leaders.

I led my first mission trip to Guatemala in June 2012, applied for non-profit status in October 2012, and received approval in May 2013. 

My vision in establishing this charity began after I became the adoptive mother of a beautiful boy named Mateo. My husband and I dedicated over three and a half years as part of the adoption process to bring him home and, throughout that experience, we realized an even bigger need to help the orphanage that took such amazing care of and provided so much love for Mateo - our new son.

As For the Love of Mateo has expanded, we have added other projects throughout Guatemala to benefit children, teens and families in Gautamela. 

I invite you to learn more about our outreach projects, our wonderfully dedicated mission leaders, and invite you to experience this life-changing opportunity yourself!

Founder & President

VALERIE EDWARDS

My name is Mel and I am one of the mission trip leaders that serves the beautiful country of Guatemala. My passion for missions began in my teens and I always knew that I wanted to pursue some sort of mission work when I was older. I have served on many mission trips through my teen years. 
 

I met Valerie 8 years ago and she shared her adoption journey with me and her love for Guatemala. Through her I was able to serve on my first mission trip to Guatemala and I instantly fell in love with the people and the culture.

Not only is the country one of the most beautiful I have ever seen, the people there are some of the most giving and most loving people.  My husband and I were only able to have one daughter. We started sponsoring a little girl through For the Love of Mateo and through meeting her our love for Guatemala only grew. I am now able to travel to Guatemala along with many of my family members and can love on so many of those beautiful children!!!

Mission Leader

MELANIE BARTELS

Hello and welcome! I am Anita Cape and am from Bartonville, Illinois. My husband Chris are blessed with three beautiful children - Nathan, Noah, and Nara.

I learned of For The Love of Mateo through my very good friend, Haylie Johnson. My husband and I adopted our son Noah from Guatemala January 16th, 2004 and he was only 10 1/2 months old when we brought him home! We had always wanted to take Noah back to his native Guatemala to see his country and to help there where we could. We had no idea how meeting Valerie Edwards and getting involved with FTLOM was going to change our lives!!

We went on our first mission trip in June of 2016 and Noah was 12 and Nara was 9. Our oldest son was unable to join us. We all fell in love again with the country and people, and the incredible mission work that FTLOM does.  It truly has become a permanent part of our lives!  We've been on four more mission trips since then with Valerie.  In April 2018, Haylie and I joined together to co-lead our first trip and both of our families joined as well (even my parents).

We have our second trip set for April 2019 and plan on continuing every April for as long as God provides.

 

Noah always says, “you can tell people all you want about the mission work, people, and country, but until you experience it, you will never fully understand the emotion”.

God Bless, 

Anita

Mission Leader

ANITA CAPE

I am a mother of four children who have all had the chance to come to Guatemala.  I know my entire family of six have left a little piece of our hearts behind since our first trip with FTLOM. Taking my then teenagers to meet the beautiful people of Guatemala gave them more life perspective then I ever could have imagined.  We were all able to see first hand what really matters in life and find a purpose beyond ourselves.   

I chose to begin leading mission trips because I was familiar with Guatemala and all of the great work FTLOM was doing - together they were going to be apart of my life forever.  I wanted to be able to help others see and feel the same things I have. Plus, I was looking to give back and spend as much time as my busy life would allow working with the families and children we had connected with.   

This "mission of love" has given my life more purpose, more love, more faith and more passion. I look forward to supporting FTLOM for years to come.

Mission Leader

HELENA DeBRUYN

My name is Haylie Johnson and I am from Bartonville, IL. I met Valerie Edwards through my cousin about 10 years ago. I learned about ‘For the Love of Mateo’, when Valerie was in town visiting a few years ago. When I heard what this organization and mission trip was about, I knew it was something that I wanted to be a part of.

 

I went on the next mission trip Valerie led in June 2015 and I fell in love with Guatemala, the mission, the people, and the culture. I expected to go to Guatemala, take donations, give back, help those in need, and come home. While I did all those things, the trip was so much more than I could have
imagined. The trip was incredibly rewarding and taught me so many things. I honestly left Guatemala with more than I came with. When I got home from my first trip, my heart was so full, and I knew that I wanted to go back. Over my next few trips, I posted pictures and I shared my experiences with my
friends and family. Eventually, Anita Cape and I decided that we would like to co-lead a trip together because so many of our friends and family were interested in the mission. Thankfully, with the blessing and help of Valerie and Claudia, we were able to make it happen in April of 2018.

 

The experience is something that is hard to describe, but trust me when I tell you, it is so worth it! I am forever grateful for the opportunity that For the Love of Mateo has given me.

 

 

With love, Haylie.

Mission Leader

HAYLIE JOHNSON

I traveled to Guatemala through FTLOM for the first time in December 2015.

 

I was called for service never truly understanding the timing or the purpose. That trip changed my life indefinitely. My heart truly feels at home when I travel to Guatemala. This upcoming December 2019 will be my 9th time visiting the country.

 

Traveling to this country through this mission allows you the opportunity to service many outreach programs. It truly makes your heart sing by helping babies, school children, seniors, from building beds and so much more! I truly feel it was God's calling for me to visit Guatemala four years ago and, every time I return, my life is changed in yet another way and always for the better.

 

This will be my second time leading a mission team in Guatemala through FTLOM. Sharing my passion of the programs which help those in need truly brings so much joy to me. As a mission team, we bring change to those we are privileged to serve on each trip and I look forward to sharing this journey with many others over the years to come . 

Mission Leader

JEAN ANN KENNING

I believe in giving back, raising the bar and living life to the fullest.

Making the decision seven years ago to follow my tug and serve in Guatemala is by far the greatest decision I have ever made.

 

For the last seven years, my daughter Amy and I have traveled to Guatemala to serve and love the beautiful people of this country. The incredible faith and extreme gratitude of every soul we have touched is amazing. It has been such a pleasure watching the glorious unfolding of the team’s work year after year in Guatemala.

 

It truly is an amazing ripple affect and has allowed myself, my friends and my family to step into our greatness.

Mission Leader

AMY & LAUREN MOSSER

 
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