Donnie Anderson – Board Member
Donnie Anderson is as unique a person as one can meet. After completing high school, he did a term in the Navy training as a Nuclear Engineer. He received his BS in Biology, minors in Chemistry, Physics, and Physical Sciences, with honors, from TWU in Fort Worth, TX in 1998, following up with graduate work in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at UNTHSC. Working his way through college doing trim carpentry, his business became quite successful and he abandoned the idea of medical school and got into construction.
Donnie grew up attending church regularly but at some point in his twenties, felt that that was more to be had and wanted to follow Christ with his entire person. That was in 2002 when he met two of his now mentors while working at their house and they persistently invited him to church. He reluctantly went and was immediately transformed by the love and welcoming environment of the people. He was then introduced to the youth minister who took him under his wing and instilled in him a love of mission work, they have since been on more than 50 such trips together. In 2011, he traveled to Honduras 6 times and was enthralled by the hearts of the people and the beauty of the life that is lived at a slower pace than that he was accustomed to.
While installing a water filter at a school by the city dump in Tegucigalpa, he was approached by a missionary that asked him if he would be interested in moving to Honduras and help with construction of an aquaponics farm in the area. After considering the idea he signed on to a 2-year commitment and moved to Honduras in January of 2012. Five years later, he still lives in Honduras and is currently helping in a program that empowers 500 families in a faith based program that uses the hallmarks of education, nutrition, citizenship, and Christian values to help break the cycle of poverty in the area. Donnie’s main job is maintenance, building homes and buildings, and leading of mission groups in the field.
Donnie’s path crossed with HTW founders Michael and Phil on their first mission trip in 2014. While working at program in Campamento he was told there was a medical mission going on at the church his program is affiliated with and decided to go see if there was anything he might be able to do to help. He walked in and Michael and Phil walked over to introduce themselves. They asked, “How can we help you?” and Donnie’s response was, “Well I don’t know. God told me to walk in here. What’s going on?”
After they mentioned they wanted to help the poor receive prosthetics a light bulb came on. A woman he knew named Mari Luz had been walking on her clubbed feet for over 30 years and now was in dire need of help due to an infection. Donnie asked if he could take them to see her to potentially help. They both immediately jumped in the truck and drove off into the hills, and thus began the friendship between the 2 groups.
Phil explained to Donnie his plans and hopes for the future of Hope to Walk and Donnie was more than happy to help anyway he could. Mari later received a double amputation and world class treatment and two prosthetics from Hope to Walk. Not only is she able to walk again but she was saved from the infection that had been going on for a year that did not respond to treatment. She now walks to town and church with her daughters and is once again an active part of the community.
Donnie currently lives in Campamento, Honduras with his wife, Dana, and his 2-year- old son DJ. Donnie graciously accepted the invitation to be a part of the Hope to Walk Board as one of their men in the field in Honduras and couldn’t be more excited about the future of both ministries. Donnie enjoys golfing, fishing, exploring, and spending time with his family and friends in those activities.