Luiz and Starla Azevedo
In 1968, Luiz and Starla met in Brasilia, through his sister Abigail Mesquita who one day came to the church in Brasilia, which at the time was just a wooden building. She joined the church saying she had belonged to the Pentecostal Christian Church in Recife. Later it was found out that Luiz´s father accepted Christ through Virgil Smith, who traveled for a year selling the Bible and visiting homes in the backwoods of Pernambuco.
Starla Joy & Luiz Carlos have spent most of their years in Brazil working on a voluntary basis in Christian social action activities in Brasilia. She was “set apart as missionary” by the Church in Brasilia. Still as a volunteer, Starla Joy helped organize and plan the Integrated Life Project. When an executive secretary was needed, she accepted the responsibility, and then when the need of a new president arose, she was elected for the task. The project now functions under its own national leadership and continues to care for children and elderly.
The Association For The Restoration of Mankind – ARH (Kids Place) was founded in 1991, by Abigail Mesquita, who left Brasilia, going back to the city where she was born, to do this. The Association has the main purpose of assisting needy children and teens, and street children, giving them education, meals, extracurricular activities, recreation, and medical, dental assistance and psychological and spiritual counseling and teaching. One year before Abigail’s death, in 1993, Abigail invited Starla and Luiz to come and help her at Kids Place in Recife. Therefore, Starla Joy united forces with Nubia Carla (Abigail´s daughter) to continue the work. The family sold their house in Brasilia and rented a house in Recife. They have suffered loss in the transfer, in extra medical expenses, wind and other damages to their house.
Starla Joy was elected as director and later as president of the Association for the Restoration of Mankind, working with street children. In this later position, neither she, nor Luiz, could receive salary from the Association so the Brazil Christian Mission began to help them as they sought for living and service link support. They have made some trips to USA but link support has been inadequate. The work with 150 children has called for more funds than projected. Transportation is still a real problem. Recife outreach seeks new prayer partners, new living, and service link support.
Today, Kids Place provides 100's of children with daily support it is also beginning to construct a new building, which will be able to hold 450 children and teens. Starla is available when needed, but now Kids Place is under new leadership.
Empowering the poor and rehabilitating the needy, are the basic objectives, which are accomplished through Christian education, professional training, technical schools, educational projects, extra activities, recreation, agriculture which witness the Love of God, the Grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the direction and orientation of the Holy Spirit.
- Starla Joy Sanders de Azevedo;
Born: March 15, 1951;
- Luiz Carlos Pinto de Azevedo;
Born: August 23, 1950;
Married: November 21, 1971
- Ages of their children:
Kyula (1972) – 39
Kalinka (1974) – 37 in November
Kaliula (1976) – 35 in October
Kevan (1977) – 34 on September 30
Education and non-Ministerial experience
Starla has BA in Theology & Bible - Christian College Brasilia;
and 4 years of study in Psychology - CEUB;
English Teacher - Adults, Youth and Children, 1970-2011
Secretary to Ambassador of Korea, 1972-1975
Nurse´s Aide, Grinnell, Iowa, 1976-1977
English/Portuguese Translator, 1970-2011
Real Estate Manager and Broker;
Social Studies Teacher;
Executive Secretary for the Planning and Implementing the Integrated Life Project in Brasilia.
President of the Integrated Life Project in Brasília, 1989-1991
Vice-President of Kids Place in Recife, 1994-2003
President of Kids Place in Recife, 2004-2005
Luiz's experience includes :
2006-2011 – We have been struggling to start our headquarters in the surrounding “favelas” (slums) in the area of Jaboatão. While the possibility hasn´t shown up to have a permanent location, we have been working from our home, assisting individuals and couples in their special needs. We work with the person, helping him/her with the acquisition of documents, giving scholarships to take courses to get enough qualification to find jobs and a place to stay until they can get reorganized, meals when needed (we have served around 300 meals a month). Some individuals come for medication and clothing, etc. Wherever there´s a need, we try to help. Not forgetting that the main help is in counseling and spreading the gospel.