Guatemala: Friends of Children Everywhere

Casa Bernabe, Guatemala - Orphanage O2H has funded towards materials and equipment to an orphanage to be used by children with Special Needs.

£3,000 ($3,878) was granted to the Christian Education Centre of My Special Treasure in Chimaltenango, Guatemala.

In 2011 one of the Nicodemus Trust supported projects, My Special Treasure (restoration and care of abused girls), visited Chimaltenango rubbish dump with their girls. The girls began teaching children to read, write and do basic maths on the side of the rubbish dump!

In 2013 it became apparent that a formal school was necessary and the Education Centre started.

Over the following 2-3 years the number of children increased to 115 and the school was established in a property and formally registered and recognized by the Guatemalan Government who provide no financial support.

The Education Centre now has 20 staff and provides nursery, pre-school and primary education, spiritual support, psychological help, special needs, nutritional help and medical care to the children who attend the school and also to their families.

Lucia is one of our school children. Her life has changed beyond recognition since coming to the Education Centre.

Lucia lived next to Chimaltenango rubbish dump and worked with her mother foraging for anything they could find to sell to live. They had to pay the rubbish dump owner a fee to enter the dump to
forage! Lucia was unable to go to school as the minimal charge by Government schools was more than her Mum could afford and in any case Lucia was helping forage at the dump. The opportunity to
go to school has meant that Lucia’s life and prospects are now completely different. Her appearance and character dramatically changed in 1 year.

Emergency Aid For Guatemalan Children

Grant for £4,000 ($5,155)  A few weeks ago there was a fire in a Government Orphanage that was designed to house 400 children but had over 700 children and teens housed in it.

This orphanage consisted of orphaned children and former street children. This mix is not ideal as they are all on their own journeys and the mixture produced a harsh environment.

The number who died in the fire reached over 50 children. As a result, children ran away and in some cases ended up living in the streets.

Dealing with this has been extremely costly and unforeseen which has cost both projects significantly and will continue to do so.

The emergency aid went for added staff, transport, first aid supplies, general welfare needs, etc.