We’re currently based in Leeds, but South America has never been far from our hearts. Andy is a dual citizen of the UK and Argentina and Katiane is from Brazil, where she worked as a lawyer.
We first got to know each other and were married in Florianopolis, Brazil. Over the last couple of years we have felt God calling us back there to work alongside local churches in helping prisoners and ex-offenders find life-changing hope in Jesus. Andy has a heart for mobilising circles of support to help offenders resettle in the community upon release. Kati will be focussing on the needs of young girls who are susceptible to abuse and exploitation.
Andy has more than a dozen years of experience in managing church-based and government programmes for people in need. In Leeds, he presently works with a local charity that provides practical support such as employment and housing for people who are socially excluded due to crime, addiction and other barriers. He’s worked with several international projects in Buenos Aires, Colombo, Hong Kong and Sao Paolo. Kati has volunteered with orphanages and helped mentor teenage girls who are facing serious challenges in their lives.
Drugs and gang violence are prevalent and growing social issues in Brazil. Poverty and the lack of rehabilitation and education programmes perpetuate gang culture. Minors are easy targets for gang recruitment as many young people lack spiritual understanding and moral values for living in the world. With the support provided by Church Mission Society we will be working together with local churches and NGOs, using our skills and experiences to help children and adults, practically, socially and spiritually – demonstrating through Christ that they can have life, and have it to the full.