Nicolleta - Italy
A Godmother and volunteer shares her testimony of being part of the NPH family.
May 4, 2018 - Haiti
I am Nicoletta, a 49-year-old graphic designer, married, and mother of a 16-year-old son and 12-year-old daughter. Travelling has always been my dream: not only as a tourist, but, usually rather to get in touch with local people in each country I have been to.
Two years ago, as the kids were getting older and my husband reduced his workload, I contacted Fondazione Francesca Rava NPH Italia Onlus Ė NPH Italy. I already knew they are very active in Italy and Latin America, and I checked to see if there was the opportunity to volunteer in one of their homes abroad: I joined on to a trip to NPH Haiti.
I was so enthusiastic about it that my 72-year-old mother decided to join me! We left with a group of amazing individuals to a country stricken by poverty, natural disasters, and lack of infrastructure.
At first sight, I was shocked. I had been in many poor countries around the world, but I could not believe what I was seeing in Haiti. It looked as if the earthquake had taken place the day before and not eight years ago, as poverty and devastation were evident throughout the city.
The NPH home in Haiti has been taking care of abandoned or at risk children for years, so as such, our task was to stay with the children of the NPH home and hospital, the St. Damien Pediatric Hospital, the only pediatric hospital on the island - both heavily supported through Italian donations. Seeing the work that NPH does in its home and hospital provided a relief to the staggering amount of need seen in one of the worldís poorest countries, knowing that the children are loved and taken care of in a home run by such amazing people.
This is how I got to know three magical children: Liline*, Anderson* and Timothe,* who I do not think I will forget any time soon.
Soon after coming back to Italy, my family and I began to sponsor these children as NPH Godparents, to help support them and the other children at NPH in working towards a bright future. My mother felt the same after her meeting with Timothe, who lives at the NPH Haiti home in Kenscoff. Timothe soon got close to her and never left her during their three days together.
At NPH Haiti, I have found a love for these children. But not only my godchildren: every time I go back, I really look forward to seeing all of them again!
Iíve been to Haiti four times in the last two years, and each time itís harder and harder to leave.
While in Italy, itís so great to receive drawings, letters, school grades, and even Christmas letters from the children that we sponsor! NPH Italy takes care of the mailing between godchildren and godparents: itís great to be always updated about how they are and how their life is going. Even if we do live on two different sides of the world, itís a great way to think about and love each other, as the tightest of families do.
My GRAZIE to Francesca Rava Foundation and to the great NPH for giving me the chance to live such an unforgettable experience!!
*Names changed for privacy purposes.