Dominican orphans bond with church group at cookout

Posted at 10:31 PM, Aug 11, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-11 23:31:59-04

Two weeks into their month-long trip to Omaha, 13 orphans from the Dominican Republic are enjoying their first visit to the U.S.

"I've always wanted to come to the United States. When I found out we were coming, I was so happy,” says Estefany Maria Rodriguez Martinez, an orphan from the Mercy Network, an orphanage in the D.R. “It’s been a lot of fun here.”

Each child was partnered with a host family but the group gets together a couple of times a week for group activities. On Friday, a cookout was held at the private home of a host family.

“Most churches are involved in giving to missions and most churches are involved in going on mission trips – I don’t know of many churches that bring the missions to them. So we’re very fortunate we get to do that with these kids,” said Pastor Lou Sloger.

The kids told 3 News Now reporter Maya Saenz, their favorite part of their trip has been the food – they enjoy the hamburgers and pizza the most.

“I really like to eat here. The food is really good. I have to take advantage of that,” says 13-year-old Wesley Alejo.

The kids will leave Omaha for the D.R. on August 31. Until then, the kids will have more group outings and some will take out-of-state trips with their host families.


Grace Baptist Church starts a GoFundMe page to help raise $100 thousand dollars to get the orphanage a 15-passenger vehicle.