Steve and Kirsten Nelson will head to Nazreth, Ethiopia teaming with Arukah Global on a mission trip to empower those struggling with poverty

By Charity Maness (Calaveras Enterprise) |

Steve and Kirsten Nelson of Copperopolis (California) will embark on a journey of a lifetime in October to Nazreth, Ethiopia. Their mission is to empower those struggling with the devastating effects of poverty including women and children who are, and were, the victims of human trafficking.

The couple is part of an 11-person team from Arukah Global, a Silicon Valley faith-based organization that travels to Nazreth yearly to build long-term relationships through “Physical, emotional, spiritual, educational and occupational support.”

“This will be my first trip,” said Steve Nelson.

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Nelson is the owner of Calaveras Tactical and a San Jose Fire Department captain.

“Quite frankly, it has been on my heart a lot. Most of my life I’ve felt like I was a consumer. For the longest time I wanted to find ways to give back.”

Leaving America in mid-October, the couple will travel with nine other Arukah Global volunteers on the more than 20-hour flight. They will land in Addis Ababa, the capitol of Ethiopia. The group will then travel an additional two hours to Nazreth on Ethiopia’s first toll road, completed in 2014.

Nelson learned about Arukah Global through his wife, who has traveled to many countries on mission trips. Yet after a mission trip to Ethiopia two years ago, “her heart found the place where she wanted to be most; no other country had called to her like Ethiopia,” said Nelson.

Please visit Arukah Global’s website to learn more about their work in Nazreth, Ethiopia

More than 30 percent of Ethiopia’s population lives in poverty and approximately 33 percent of the population is infected with the HIV/AIDS virus, according to Nelson.

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