How it all began

Back in 2005, a vacation planned for the Dominican Republic turned into a spiritual journey that has continued throughout the years to help the children in a small community in Higuey.

Kevin & Denise Macnab are well travelled, having visited several Caribbean islands before they came to the Dominican Republic, but it was here that they fell in love with the people of the island. The genuine friendliness, humility, sense of humour and acts of service touched their hearts.

In 2011, while on a return trip to the Dominican Republic, they met Pastor Gabriel D’Alusma, who was their beach server at their resort. When speaking of their children, he surprised them by saying that he had 54 children! In truth, he had 4 children of his own but had made it his personal mission to care for the children in his community, providing them with spiritual guidance, care and education. He showed himself to be a godly man, full of love for the people of his country. A strong bond was formed.... neither knew where it was to lead them. Over the next several years their relationship grew, with additional visits and gifts of clothing and basic needs for the children. However this did not seem to be enough.

On one such visit, the Pastor, now fondly called “Mi Hermano - Gabi” invited them to his home in Higuey to meet the children. The visit was overwhelming – the children were so excited to see them, and full of love for them as Gabi had told them about his friends from Canada that God had sent to help provide for them.

Their hearts melted when they saw his tiny family house within which he had dedicated an entire floor to give a space for these children. Their first observation? No flushing toilets. Immediately they made arrangements to have a toilet installed. Anything to help this incredible man who was trying to do so much on his meagre salary.

Denise and Pastor Gabriel D'Alusma
Denise and Pastor Gabriel D'Alusma

Subsequent visits have brought other gifts such as school supplies and tablets to further educational goals so that the children could hope for a future in the tourism industry. Teaching English and math has been a priority to meet this goal. Finally, a small building adjacent to his house named the GOKEDE salon built using Canadian dollars to help establish a more formal school program. Tablets and educational supplies were provided to help in this endeavour.