Our Homes: NPH Guatemala
Guatemala COVID-19 Updates
(Excerpts from NPH Guatemala National Director, Jose Orlando Ramos, on the challenges facing NPH Guatemala during the COVID-19 crisis, the needs of the home and why he is so proud of his staff.)
COVID-19 has had a huge impact on the way of life in Guatemala. At NPH Guatemala, we strive to ensure our children, staff and communities are safe.
The crisis has had a considerable psychological impact on the children and adolescents. Although they understand what is happening, they want to return to their normal routine. To help, we have implemented various measures to support the children’s emotional stability:
Staff in priority areas, such as caregivers, cooks, maintenance, transportation, security, psychologists and recreation personnel, are equipped with protective clothing and training from a medical staff to understand more about the virus. We also have our university students supporting us unconditionally in all areas.
The greatest basic need for the home is acquiring food, but this is proving to be difficult throughout the country.
42,042 square miles – about the size of Tennessee
16,581,273 (July 2018 est.)
Spanish 60%, Amerindian languages 40% (there are more than 20 officially recognized Amerindian languages)
Devastation of 35 years of civil war; more than half the population lives below the poverty line
Discover NPH Guatemala
NPH’s fifth home for orphaned, abandoned and at-risk children was established in rented facilities in 1996. The family moved to their new home, named Casa San Andres, which is situated 4,900 feet above sea level in Guatemala’s highlands, in August 2003.
NPH Guatemala Facts
November 11, 1996
Children/youth fully supported:
Total services provided:
2,208 (Includes children and youth fully supported, community children, youths and adults who receive support by either attending our onsite schools, receive scholarships, receive in-kind donations and or medical/social services.)
In Parramos, 16 miles from Antigua and an hour northwest of Guatemala City, the capital
25 acres of land; school (grades K-9); vocational workshops; computer room; clinic; chapel; sports fields/courts; solar water heaters in 90% of home, and power in two houses; farm and greenhouse; fully independent water system, including a purification mechanism, a tower, a well, and a sewage treatment plant
Did you know?
- The school year in Guatemala is January – October.
- The school curriculum includes Spanish, social studies, natural sciences, English, arts and crafts, music and sports.
- There are five nationally certified vocational workshops: Baking, Cooking, Carpentry, Metalwork, and Sewing.
- Children of all ages help cultivate the vegetables on the farm.
- Two special projects – Family Bakery and The Smile Shop – were launched in 2015. The bakery offers fresh pastries made on site and coffee to help local fundraising. It is staffed by students who gain professional experience and business management skills. The Smile Shop is an integrated learning store for children and young adults with physical and cognitive disabilities. Participants make and sell healthy snacks, attend to clients, and manage resources, learning skills for independence.
- The NPH OneFamily program was launched in 2017 to reintegrate and support youth from the NPH home who are now able to live with their biological families. The program currently supports 38 children.
- After volcanic eruptions in 2018, NPH Guatemala delivered 1,350 servings of food and five weeks’ worth of medicine to victims’ shelters and led workshops for women as well as activities for children.