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A motorbike speeds by one of the murals near the Campamento town square.
Insight
Photo by Erik Tryggestad

Handyman has a heart for Honduras

Donnie Anderson has overseen the Christian Relief Fund's Campamento, Honduras, program for nearly a decade.

CAMPAMENTO, Honduras — I met Donnie Anderson at a garbage dump.

Sort of. I was in Honduras in 2012 covering an effort by missionaries to serve people, a lot of them children, who scratched out a living at a massive, mountaintop landfill.

Hondurans look for plastic bottles and other recyclables at a dump near Tegucigalpa in 2012.

Hondurans look for plastic bottles and other recyclables at a dump near Tegucigalpa in 2012.

I interviewed the poor, beautiful souls as they fished through chicken bones and glass in search of plastic bottles they could sell to a recycling business.

(Eat your heart out, Mike Rowe.)

Donnie Anderson

Donnie Anderson

Donnie, a self-described handyman and builder, was working on a mission project involving aquaponics. He had done about 10 trips to Honduras, and the missionaries had convinced him to “go down for a couple of years,” he told me.

Nine years later, he’s still in Honduras. Security concerns made the hydroponics project unworkable, but Bobby Moore invited him to move to Campamento, a quiet town in Honduras’ Olancho state, to oversee the ministry programs of Bread for a Hungry World. A few years later, that ministry merged with Christian Relief Fund.


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When I told Bobby I was going to be in Olancho covering another ministry, Predisan, he suggested I stop by and talk to Donnie for my piece on CRF’s 50th anniversary.

I got to meet Donnie’s wife, Dana. They met at a coffee bar where she worked. They married in 2013 and have an adorable 8-year-old son, D.J.

D.J. Anderson shows off one of his superhero masks at the Christian Relief Fund center in Campamento, Honduras.

D.J. Anderson shows off one of his superhero masks at the Christian Relief Fund center in Campamento, Honduras.

I also interviewed Cecilia Martinez, who has worked for the Campamento program for 10 years. These folks have found ways to serve hundreds of kids — and their families — despite the hardships of COVID-19.

Most inspiring was my visit with Iris Alicia Matute, principal of a school with 280 kids, all sponsored through CRF. She teared up as she talked about all the work that Christian teams from the U.S. have put into the school and the children’s lives.

Before we left, we took in some of the beautiful murals painted in Campamento’s town square.

It was a blessing seeing God at work. Thanks, Donnie. I’ll try to make it back in less than nine years.

Don’t go anywhere.

Donnie Anderson with wife Dana (in orange), son D.J., coworker Cecilia Martinez and a young friend in Campamento, Honduras.

Erik Tryggestad is president and CEO of The Christian Chronicle. Contact [email protected], and follow him on Twitter @eriktryggestad.

Filed under: Campamento Christian Relief Fund CRF Donnie Anderson Honduras Insight Opinion

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