An older sister is simply happy knowing her younger siblings are safe, sound and well taken care of. June 22, 2016 - Mexico
Marisabel* is shy and it is hard for her to open up. Marisabel is the oldest of the siblings who are now at Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos™. The other youngsters are thirteen, twelve and ten years old.
Marisabel, right, with NPH México's Family Service Coordinator Vera Hornung at the home in Miacatlan.
Family members took turns looking after the children, due to the fact their parents were no longer able to care for them, but then a child-protection agency stepped in. They separated the siblings by age and placed them into different care facilities.
Without her sisters and brother she felt “solita y feo,” Marisabel says in Spanish. This means lonely, hurt and awful.
After five years alone at the care facility, Marisabel ran away to find her siblings. She was caught and returned, but the facility then helped to reunite the siblings. They were then all placed together into an orphanage with a school.
Marisabel liked it there. They stayed for three years until a new owner changed the format and closed the orphanage. The siblings had to move again, and this time they came to NPH. This was hard on Marisabel. She and her siblings were overwhelmed by the sprawling country home in Miacatlan and the hundreds of children who lived there. The prior home had only 60 children.
It is one year later (the siblings arrived April 2015) and Marisabel feels better. “Seguir adelante,” she says. This is a Spanish phrase meaning to push ahead, keep going. She appreciates and values having the opportunity to go to school and study.
“I'm now here and concentrating on my future,” she tells Vera in Spanish. Her dream is to study gastronomy at university. She wants to be a chef.
Marisabel is truly happy the siblings are all back together again. “Feliz,” she replies when asked how she feels knowing her siblings are safe and taken care of. “They study, are well cared for and are given the attention they need,” she says. Marisabel feels peaceful because her family can stay at NPH until they finish their education. She feels secure knowing they can stay at NPH if they choose to, regardless if they go to university or a trade school.
“Ella está en calma,” says NPH's psychologist Carlos Jesus Ayala Herrera. He says Marisabel is calm now.
“NPH has a commitment to its children,” says Vera. It offers the children “pertenencia,” the feeling of belonging. NPH's childcare policy is based on its mission and values. NPH nurtures orphaned and vulnerable children in a loving, stable, secure family environment. It keeps brothers and sisters together and provides education, healthcare and spiritual formation.
At NPH they can feel safe and secure in all aspects of life and enjoy the safety but not be overprotected. Children find a permanent home in the NPH family. NPH takes in orphaned, abandoned and other at-risk children who might not survive without NPH and the expectation is that all children will become permanent members of the NPH family. Because of this promise, Marisabel can find peace and security. She and her siblings can stay together worry free.
The siblings are very close, and Marisabel has unconditional love for them. Last January, her aunt, their father's sister, came for a visit, and since has become closer with the siblings. Their aunt has also come to visit the children on Visitor's Day. This is an event held three times a year at NPH, and is where family comes to visit the pequeños.
Marisabel hopes for peace for her family, that everyone is well, and that they can stay together.
*Name changed for privacy purposes.
Oksana Lypowecky Communication Officer
You may be only one person in the world, but you may be all the world to one child.
—Fr. William Wasson