Lightshine was initially founded by Paul Eklund in 2001. At the time he had a practice in international law which took him to Europe. In the 1990’s he facilitated adoptions of orphans in Romania, also arranging for medical supplies, vitamins, and other necessities for abandoned children. In 2003/2004 Paul began to visit Latin America, opening up opportunities to see the needs of our neighbors to the south…
In August 2004 we began a work with orphans in Nicaragua, partnering with a marvelous organization “AGROS”. See: https://www.agros.org/Learn-About-Us. In May 2005, Paul sold his home in Seattle, arranging to take a sabbatical from his law practice to teach orphaned kids near Managua how to read (in Spanish). Through Peruvian friends he met in Nicaragua, Paul set out for the ‘Land of the Incas’, with hopes of helping homeless children via adoptions and/or aid.
In 2006 we started helping abandoned children in Peru. Initially Lightshine worked with the government of Peru, arranging aid for children in Ancash and Lima. We provided for practical needs, sending shoes and books; providing food. It was the beginning of a learning curve (discovering how to effectively help abandoned children in a foreign, institutional setting).
In 2007, our board decided to choose ONE home for development: Torre Fuerte in Arequipa, high in the Andes. From late 2006 to Dec 2012 we gradually became the primary source of funding & ‘teams’ to help develop Torre Fuerte from a small outreach to a full-service operation (home to as many as 45 abandoned girls). Since 2013 - 2015 others have partnered with Torre Fuerte, providing for its operational needs and sustainability. Presently, in Peru, Lightshine focuses primarily on health care: providing clean drinking water. (See "WATER")
In 2013 we added a new ministry to save children’s lives- Partnering with Seattle University, we are bringing low cost, effective portable water filtration to remote villages. Presently we are targeting the Colinas (upper hills), where families have no sanitation, no power, and unsafe water.
In April 2014 Paul returned from Peru with samples of water, taken from remote villages. All were laden with parasites; some had measureable amounts of heavy metals (especially mercury). By June 2014 we had arranged for clean water for families in the 1st village! By the end of 2015 we had accomplished three more 'LIVING WATER' projects near Lima: the first was a Rotary project (Omak-Okanogan WA club/ Sunrise Lima club). The next two were in the Manchay area, southeast of Lima. Realizing that most of the recipients are young single mothers, we also promote literacy and spiritual life by distributing Children's Bibles.
Going forward in 2016 we are targeting selected water projects (Colinas) in Manchay, Peru: assisting Seattle University to facilitate 'fish farms' in arid areas of Peru; & partnering with DOXA in Mexico to replicate our success in Peru, but with orphans & the homeless in Mexico.
Please invest with us… saving a life and creating a future!
Donations are tax-deductible. Lightshine is a tax-exempt, charitable organization, as authorized by Section 501 (c)(3) of the IRS. GRACIAS!