“But you are a tower of refuge to the poor, O Lord,
a tower of refuge to the needy in distress.”
Isaiah 25:4

During 2023, with our now family settled in Nicaragua, Novō is increasingly focused on building relationships that will see Novō’s impact extend beyond Bolivia.

Addiction is a global epidemic that destroys the lives of millions. Not just the lives of those addicted but their children, parents, and communities. As such, Novō’s vision is to empower God’s people in developing nations to create transformational communities that bring freedom to individuals, peace to families, and hope to communities gripped by addiction.

Rather than start new works under the ownership of Novō, we want to come alongside those called to launch (or develop) recovery communities as a ‘big brother’ to mentor and train, sharing experience and expertise, make financial grants, and develop a dynamic sense of fellowship and prayer support among those who become Novō Communities. At the heart of what we can offer is a holistic recovery programme that leads people on a step-by-step journey into long-term recovery from addiction.


Here in Nicaragua, I’m excited to share that we have signed a partnership agreement with Quien Soy Yo?, a ministry led by Rommel and Ana Julia, to support their plans to establish a recovery community in Diriamba.

For the past decade, Quien Soy Yo? has been serving the homeless and addicted on the streets of the colonial city of Granada and engaging in a prison ministry, again reaching many whose struggles are rooted in addiction. While these are excellent ministries, Rommel and Ana Julia’s long-term vision is for a place where those they serve can build new lives free from addiction.

Rommel writes:

A Christ-Centered Rehabilitation Center is a long-term solution, which would offer real hope in aiding men and women suffering from the strong bondages of addictions, especially those living on the streets.

Our story and our mission have been shaped by a young man named Jonathan. Jonathan was one of the first street people to enter our group. He was joyful, excited, and enthusiastic, growing with us and helping us with others in the group. Jonathan had grown up on the streets without a home or family. 

Unfortunately, Jonathan was always drawn back to the streets. One week, we were worried because Jonathan hadn’t come to our meeting. We searched for him only to discover he had broken a leg in a fight. Being homeless, he did not seek treatment. His leg became infected and had to be amputated. He was deeply depressed by the loss of his leg and died in the hospital several days later. 

We believe that had we been able to remove Jonathan from the city and the influence of his street life and addictions, he would perhaps be alive today. Jonathan has become the image of those we seek to help, and his death has been the clear message that a Christian treatment center is a vision from God and should be the focus of our long-term plans.

A key step in developing our partnership with Quien Soy Yo? was a 10-day visit that Rommel and I made to Bolivia in March. This allowed Rommel to see the Novō programme up close, experience the culture of the community, and build relationship with the team in Bolivia.

As Novō, we’re excited to be able to support Rommel and Quien Soy Yo? team as they continue working towards the creation of a place of refuge, restoration, and equipping for the men and women they love, week by week, on the streets (and in the prisons) of Nicaragua. An early priority is creating a small business (potentially raising pigs) that can generate income to support the rehabilitation centre.


At the end of August, Bruno (Recovery Worker) and I had the opportunity to visit the Renacer en Cristo rehabilitation centre in Salinas, Ecuador, led by Victor and Patricia.  The connection came through Familia Kairos, Bruno’s church in Bolivia, which has planted a new congregation in Salinas.

The visit highlighted the challenges and opportunities of supporting those working on the margins among the poorest communities in the developing world.

Bruno and I were well looked after as we stayed in the rehab itself. Senior residents diligently walked us between their two buildings in the neighbourhood to keep us safe (evidently, with good reason, as someone was robbed while we were there).

There was lots to celebrate. Victor and Patricia’s heart for the addicted, a solid legal registration, and a wholehearted Christian approach. It was also good to see the commitment and hands-on support of the Familia Kairos church (our point of contact) and to meet with their pastor, Andres, a humble, Spirit-filled guy from Bolivia.

There were also significant challenges. The facilities are very basic, with a lack of outdoor space and overcrowded bedrooms. Victor & Patricia & family live in a single room in the heart of the property. More fundamentally, financial demands mean the centre currently receives many who are obligated to be there by the police or families. This is normal in Ecuador (and across the developing world), but it’s not an ideal basis for effective work and creates safety concerns.

Over the coming months, we’ll continue exploring whether there is the potential for a partnership that fully aligns with Novō’s values. We need real wisdom to know how best to proceed. Please pray that God will guide us all (Victor, Patricia, Familia Kairos church, and Novō).


Back in October 2022, we were visited at the Quinta by Nanine, a South African, who was researching effective responses to addiction for RealDeal, an NGO based in Stellenbosch, with a view to the immense addiction problem in the townships of the Western Cape. She left inspired by Novō’s work and keen to explore how Novō could help them as they seek to respond to the needs faced by her community. Since then, we’ve been in ongoing communication, exploring various possibilities to deploy Novō’s programme among adults and young people in both residential and community settings.


Also in Nicaragua (this time in Matagalpa, to the north), we’re beginning to work with Manahaim, a rehab overseen by Rick & Mary (missionaries with Christian Veterinary Mission) and William (a Nicaraguan lawyer with a big heart for the addicted). Manahaim is partly sustained by a small farm, which operates alongside the rehab and is at a significant turning point in its history after some difficult years.

Over the coming months, we’ll be conducting an in-depth evaluation of the project to offer ongoing support to enable the new leadership to create an effective, sustainable, and hope-filled recovery community.


Our long-term goal is to create a community of communities whose heart and approach are a model of compassionate addiction care. As we continue taking steps toward this goal, we’re praying for breakthroughs in two specific areas:

Our ability to grow Novō’s ministry depends on our financial capacity. Our prayer is for a significant increase in the regular income that enables us to make financial commitments and one-off donations that will allow us to tackle key projects and build reserves.

Each month, we trust God for GBP 5,750 / USD 7,000 / CAD 9,500 (in addition to regular giving) to meet our budget for 2023. And, of course, we long to be able to do much more!

As we look outwards, Novō’s community in Bolivia will operate as both a recovery community and a context for equipping recovery workers from elsewhere in the developing world. Owning Novo’s home in Bolivia would give us a secure base for this work and significantly reduce our monthly spending.

Please pray with us!

If you can give to Novo Communities, please click on the DONATE button or contact me (andy@novocommunities.org). Likewise, if you’d like to learn more about what it would take for us to purchase the Quinta, please be in touch.

Above all, thank you for your heart for those gripped by addiction and your support for Novō Communities.

Yours in Christ,



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