Tesoro Club fills a need in the East Coachella Valley for an avenue to share the Gospel to hundreds of migrant farm worker families.
The Coachella Valley is famous for its’ mild winters that attracts visitors from around the world. The area has over one hundred and fifty golf courses and resorts which services hundreds of thousands of visitors annually. While the western side of the valley is made of mostly resort or bedroom communities that support the vacation industry, the Eastern Coachella Valley is one of the premier farming areas in the nation.
This desert valley is irrigated by both a natural aquifer and a canal from the Colorado River which provides water for both the golfing and the farming industry. The produce from the Coachella Valley is shipped to markets all over North America and the area is well known for its dates, grapes and winter vegetables. The population of the East Valley communities of Coachella, Oasis, Thermal, North Shore and Mecca are primarily Hispanic farmworkers. In surrounding areas are many trailer parks populated by farmworkers that are located mostly on Indian reservations. These trailer parks are often overcrowded and the living standards are well below the poverty level.
In the summer of 2005 two East side Hispanic churches and a vegetable growing company teamed up to host a vacation Bible school for the children of local farm workers at the company’s packing facility. That first year 44 children attended this weeklong event and the Tesoro Club was born. In Spanish, the word "Tesoro" means treasure and the idea behind the Tesoro Club was to minister to the underprivileged children in the area. Since that first year the club has grown into a full time outreach ministry that administers several programs for the benefit of children from the Eastern Coachella Valley.
The Tesoro Club has four main programs that are available to any child between the ages of 4 and 18. Both the summer vacation Bible school (VBS) program and the summer mountain camp program average two hundred kids each year each. The VBS program is run by Tesoro staff and assisted by local volunteers from churches throughout the valley as well as a few from outside the area. The summer camp program provides a week long mountain camping experience for kids age 9-17. All the kids attend via scholarships. During the school year the Tesoro club manages a weekly soccer program for middle school age and high school aged kids on Monday nights that averages 120 youth per night and a biweekly Bible club program on Saturday mornings that averages 80 to 100 children per week.
Currently the club is supported by Belk Farms LLC, several small local Hispanic churches and through the generous donations of those who support the vision and mission of Tesoro Club.