People worshipping together at CityServe Costa Rica.
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — On Saturday, March 25, CityServe International officially launched CityServe Costa Rica in Carrillo Canton. In partnership with the Mission in Action Foundation, CityServe Costa Rica has hit the ground running with a robust plan to resource a network of local churches to help impoverished communities. CityServe Costa Rica opened with 8 containers of goods-in-kind from the U.S. worth over $1 million, and 36 church PODs (Point of Distribution), with plans to onboard an additional 200 PODs throughout Costa Rica over the next year and a half.

To celebrate this launch, a special grand opening was held at the Community Center in Carrillo Canton with church and community leaders and a special video message from Karl Hargestam, Vice President of CityServe Affiliates. Immediately following the celebration, new POD leaders traveled to the HUB to pick up their first load of goods-in-kind consisting of clothing and household necessities.

“Mission in Action Foundation works hand-in-hand with churches, organizations and volunteers,” said Arnold Preston, Executive Director of CityServe Costa Rica. “With the launch of CityServe Costa Rica, we can expand our work to train and empower local churches to help people in need. We believe in putting our faith, hope and love in action because love is more than just words.”

A CityServe HUB is a church or faith-based organization with the capacity and space to receive truckloads of GIK, including food. A HUB facilitates the local church PODs under its purview to serve the community in the “Last Mile of Need.”

CityServe Costa Rica volunteers.

CityServe International was given birth out of the idea that local churches provide the best way to reach communities in need with unwavering compassion. They train, equip, and mobilize local churches to live out the Gospel of Jesus Christ in their respective communities. CityServe networks are now in 15 states and in more than 5 countries. CityServe Costa Rica will be the organization’s first presence in Central America.

“We were blessed to find a strategic partner that already has built so much trust throughout Costa Rica, and we were equally blessed to be connected with dozens of churches throughout the country who are eager to shower this nation with help and hope,” said CityServe co-founder Dave Donaldson. “I know that no matter what challenges we encounter in each neighborhood we serve, the love of Jesus will be evident, no hurting individual will be left behind, and miracles will abound. This is an exciting moment for all of us at CityServe.”

Thanks to the support of local churches in the US, CityServe has already helped coordinate emergency relief in nations facing turmoil or natural disasters over the years, in places like Turkey, Syria, and Ukraine. In Eastern Europe, they have assembled a vast network of more than 6,000 churches that help transport mothers and children out of conflict zones, provide generators in towns without electricity, in addition to providing emergency medical supplies, food, and water.