La Ola Casa Hogar was founded by Bob and Becky Plinke from Cookeville, TN. They felt a spiritual call to start a home for street children in Mexico. Both had a heart for foreign missions and had been involved in mission trips for several years. In 2009 Becky left her professional career as a nurse and moved to Mexico to look for a place to start a mission. She began working for Children of the Dump in Puerto Vallarta, but could not find the support there to start a home for children. She then went to Tepic, Nayarit and spent several months trying to found an orphanage there, but encountered much opposition from another orphange. One day she felt like she should leave Tepic. She left the very next day and moved to Ajijic, Jalisco. She had met a couple from Ajijic, Betty and Jim Parker. Through the efforts of Betty and Jim she was introduced to a local bank manager who knew of a property that could be used for an orphanage.
In January of 2010 La Ola was granted a 2 1/2 year lease on an abandoned house. The house had been donated to the city of Chapala to be used for a shelter for abused women or orphan children. The house had been abandoned for 2 years, during which time it had been vandalized. The doors, sinks, toilets, woodwork and even the electrical wiring had been stolen. There were cracks in the walls and the roof. The foundation had settled. The fence around the property was falling down. Becky moved into the house by herself with just a security guard. It was the coldest and wettest winter in recent history with rain pouring through the roof and wind blowing through the cracks in the walls. Under such adverse conditions she began restoring the property. On March 1, 2010 La Ola received the first children from the child welfare department. In July Bob retired from his profession as a medical doctor to join the effort.
Many local people and people from the United States and Canada came forward to help. Friends from all walks of life, including many professional people pitched in with their talents and support. It takes more than a couple of people to make this kind of project happen. Today with the grace of God and the help of many people in the local community and abroad, La Ola Casa Hogar has become a reality and is serving the needs of 16 abandoned, abused and orphaned children in Mexico. Over 40 children have been sheltered at La Ola since its inception.
In September of 2011 we were blessed to be able to move into our current facility in Jocotepec, Jalisco.
This post is also available in: Spanish