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We are a community of dreamers, doers, justice-seekers, advocates, helpers, and teachers with a deep-rooted love for Jesus Christ.

Together, we are committed to caring for the widow and the orphan in our midst. Six years of living from one crisis to the next inside the walls of a Guatemalan orphanage taught us a lot of things but this one thing stuck: orphan care is terribly complicated. No matter how hard we worked to improve our facilities, better our food and quality of care, or create a family environment, it felt like we were running in circles. We were putting band-aids on an issue that needs open heart surgery. In our transition towards family-based care, we are no longer focused on short-term fixes but rather long-term transformative solutions.

At Story International, we are committed to embracing the complexity of the task at hand and fighting for the only thing that will ultimately end the orphan crisis: family.

We strive to preserve and strengthen families and communities in an effort to prevent family separation at all costs. While safe and loving family-care is the goal, we also recognize short-term residential care as part of the continuum of care so long as it is small-scale, transitional, and temporary. We provide respite residential care while we simultaneously work to reunify biological and extended families. We are in the process of expanding our services to foster and adoptive families as well. By supporting families and engaging the local church to be part of the solution, we’re writing better stories: stories of the transformative power of the Gospel. Stories of togetherness, restoration, triumph, grace, and new beginnings. Jesus stories.

 

 
 
 

Our Mission.

Story International seeks to empower and equip Guatemala’s most vulnerable through the love and knowledge of Jesus Christ.

 

our vision.

We serve the vulnerable of Guatemala so that we may one day see the restoration of family structures and the cycles of generational poverty broken. We strive to see fewer kids institutionalized and more kids cared for in the context of family.  We seek to empower communities and engage the local church as a new generation of Guatemalans rises up to lead their communities with unwavering faith in Jesus Christ.

 

 

 
 

Values.

We are for Jesus.

We are for family.

We are for dignity.

We are for education.

We are for Guatemala.

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Programs

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businesses

fuego cafe and roastery

Founded in 2016, Fuego Café is a for-profit 3rd wave coffee shop established to create sustainable funding for Story International. A mission team from Roberts Wesleyan College launched Fuego not only to subsidize some of the operating costs of Story International but also to create entrepreneurial employment opportunities for teenagers and young adults from the Huehue community.  We are staffed primarily by young adults who have aged out of our other programs and are transitioning into independent living. The staff learn barista skills as well as more business-specific skills such as budgeting and customer service.

Fuego has some less-tangible goals as well. We are committed to creating a safe & positive space for people to share, create, study, and be. We strive to foster creativity & community in a city where peace and quiet (and a good cup of coffee) can be hard to find. Our space is often used by local churches for small-group meetings, date nights, game nights, etc. We also seek to serve coffee exclusively from local farmers in the hopes that both employees and the community are excited by and proud of their local industry.

The roasting side of our business model is another for-profit initiative. The Roastery was founded in 2016 in conjunction with Fuego Café with the goal of roasting local, Huehuetenango beans in a strategic and artful way to produce specialty coffee of the highest quality. Not only is our coffee freshly roasted and served at Fuego, it is also sold wholesale to vendors across Huehuetenango and the United States. All of our coffee is grown right here in the mountains of Huehuetenango and roasted in house at Fuego. Coffee roasting is a highly specialized skill that we are privileged to be able to teach to the young adults in our programs, providing yet another skills training and employment opportunity.  

 

Fuego Huehue serves as a replica and sister shop of Fuego Coffee Roasters in Rochester New York, founded in 2013.

Follow us on Facebook at Fuego Huehue or on Instagram @fuegohuehue

 

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Our Team.

office staff

 
Alycia Pinizzotto Executive Director

Alycia Pinizzotto
Executive Director

Melanie Chandler Director of Development

Melanie Chandler
Director of Development

Dilma Palacios Administrator

Dilma Palacios
Administrator

Youscella Hernandez Head of Social Work

Youscella Hernandez
Head of Social Work

Karen Hernandez Head of Psychology

Karen Hernandez
Head of Psychology

Levi Bareither Advocacy + Development Coordinator

Levi Bareither
Advocacy + Development Coordinator

Greg Pinizzotto Director of Ministry + Discipleship

Greg Pinizzotto
Director of Ministry + Discipleship

Emily Massi Communications Director

Emily Massi
Communications Director

Fernanda Castillo Social Worker, Family Services

Fernanda Castillo
Social Worker, Family Services

Yesenia Morales Daycare

Yesenia Morales
Daycare

Zoila Toledo Psychologist, Family Services

Zoila Toledo
Psychologist, Family Services

Nicole Puglisi Youth Ministry Coordinator

Nicole Puglisi
Youth Ministry Coordinator

Boris Gutierrez Community Outreach

Boris Gutierrez
Community Outreach

Malincy Hernandez Secretary

Malincy Hernandez
Secretary

Rosa Rios Community Outreach

Rosa Rios
Community Outreach

Gustavo Martinez Support Staff

Gustavo Martinez
Support Staff

 
 
 

school staff

Esvin Gutierrez Director

Esvin Gutierrez
Director

Nicole Puglisi 3rd + 4th English

Nicole Puglisi
3rd + 4th English

Jonathan Villatoro P.E. + Music + Plastic Arts

Jonathan Villatoro
P.E. + Music + Plastic Arts

Olga Garcia Psychologist

Olga Garcia
Psychologist

Amanda Vicente 1st + 2nd

Amanda Vicente
1st + 2nd

Yulie Hernandez Secretary

Yulie Hernandez
Secretary

Adam Diehm 5th + 6th English

Adam Diehm
5th + 6th English

Jessica Mejia Preschool + Kindergarten

Jessica Mejia
Preschool + Kindergarten

Mary Castro Support Staff

Mary Castro
Support Staff

Vianey Perez 3rd + 5th

Vianey Perez
3rd + 5th

Jonathan Leon Preschool + Kindergarten English

Jonathan Leon
Preschool + Kindergarten English

 
 
 

Refuge 91 Staff

Rony Merida Program Director

Rony Merida
Program Director

Agusto Gutierrez Caretaker

Agusto Gutierrez
Caretaker

Marta Morales Social Worker

Marta Morales
Social Worker

Joselino Guevara Caretaker

Joselino Guevara
Caretaker

Obdulia Herrera Caretaker

Obdulia Herrera
Caretaker

Norma Garcia Caretaker

Norma Garcia
Caretaker

Dilsa Hernandez Caretaker

Dilsa Hernandez
Caretaker

Helen Mendez Caretaker

Helen Mendez
Caretaker

 

Fuego Coffee House Staff

 

board members

our partners.