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Welcome Future Leaders!

The NPH International Seattle Institute welcomes the class of 2016 – 2017.

About the Program

Founded in 1954 by Father William B. Wasson, NPH strives to provide a permanent family and home for orphaned, abandoned and other at-risk children who live in conditions of extreme poverty. One of his dreams was that NPH children grow up to care for subsequent generations of children in need. To cultivate future leaders, the NPH International Seattle Institute was founded in September 2011. The Institute is designed to build upon the foundation emerging leaders have already received at their NPH homes and through various Family Services workshops.

Participants increase their knowledge and abilities in the areas of SERVICE, LEADERSHIP AND COMMUNICATION. They live with host families in Seattle, Washington, while they study English and attend leadership courses, spiritual retreats and various community events. They speak at a variety of NPH USA fundraisers and perform other service-work. When they return to their home countries, they will be better prepared to share their gifts and talents with the NPH family and the local community.

Program Components:

Leadership Development

Leadership is taught and discussed through weekly meetings, retreats, panels, small groups, host family and mentor conversations, and involvement at NPH USA Northwest, Seattle University, local schools, non-profits and churches.  Throughout the year, the participants have ample opportunities to put their skills into practice.


The students study English at a local community college and put it into practice by living with host families, who also offer their support and guidance throughout the year.


Each participant is matched with a mentor. These Friends for the Journey are social workers, counselors, pastoral ministers and several are former NPH volunteers. The students meet with their mentors two times each month and establish a confidential and safe relationship to continue exploring their unique gifts, with the goal of being better able to love and serve others. If you are interested in becoming a mentor or have ideas for community involvement, please email

Cultural Immersion

The students live with and become part of their host family.  They attend church, family events, etc….with their family here.  The diversity of the Northwest lends itself well to learning about many facets/perspectives of life in the US and creates opportunities for new understanding.

Service and Practical Experience

As a group and individually, the students engage in a variety of volunteer opportunities and service projects, as well as job-shadowing experiences.

Class of 2016 – 2017


Samuel, Haiti

Jocelyn Samuel has his electro-mechanical degree. He eventually wants to study law to work for children in poverty. During his time in Seattle, he hopes to work on improving his communication skills within a team and speaking in public. Samuel is deeply motivated by faith, expressing that it has been his foundation during challenging times. Samuel says, “I want to expand my knowledge of what it means to be a leader and what it takes to be a great leader. I think I will learn to know myself better and in turn, I will learn how to lead others well.”


Saravia, Honduras

Saravia Elvir is currently in the process of obtaining her degree in Nutrition. Her future plans include becoming a chef, and eventually returning to the NPH Honduras home. She has participated in prior NPH Leadership conferences and spent last summer in Pennsylvania working at a YMCA camp. Saravia looks forward to learning more about teamwork and having opportunities to practice what she is learning. She says, “My main motivation for participating in the program is to grow as a person, learn more about NPH, and to be a strong representative of Honduras.”


David, Guatemala

David Garcia is in his first year of studying Clinical Psychology. In the last few years, David has taken on the responsibilities of working with young adults supporting NPH Guatemala. He recognizes the unique talent within individuals and is excited to learn more about how to support people. David recognizes the vastness of leadership, stating that, “there are endless amounts of definitions of leadership. Many can claim to be leaders, but few know the importance of quality leadership and take advantage of it…It begins with recognizing my own self-worth.”


Mariela, Mexico

Mariela Figueroa is a practicing Orthodontist in Mexico. She is excited to continue developing her own leadership skills while also learning about new ones. Mariela finds different cultures fascinating, and she is especially looking forward to being in the United States to meet new people. Mariela says that much of her own strength comes from living in NPH Mexico. “It (NPH) provides love and safety. It emphasizes the importance of education and teaches the values of sharing, working hard, and educating youth for the future so that they can contribute to the workforce and break the cycle of poverty.”


Roxana, El Salvador

Roxana Escobar is in the process of becoming a licensed psychologist. She is eager to learn more about leadership and take advantage of this opportunity for her own personal growth. After graduating from the program, Roxana plans to return to teach English in the NPH El Salvador home. When asked about what NPH means to her, Roxana replied, “It is my family and my home… It is the place where you can achieve your dreams and share them with others. It is the family where you can celebrate your triumphs and failures with your youngest to oldest brothers and sisters.”


Jimmy, Nicaragua

Jimmy García just finished his first year studying Political Science and International Relations in college. He loves to interact with people from different cultures in order to learn how to better understand the world. Jimmy is excited to be an ambassador of NPH while in Seattle through learning about active leadership. When asked about important qualities of a leader, Jimmy responded that humility is the most important. “We cannot ever forget where we come from in order to always remember where we are going. A leader is empathetic, democratic, enthusiastic, innovative, creative and patient.”

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Related Information:
The Seattle Institute Program
The Seattle Institute Blog
The Seattle Institute: Celebrating Five Years
Leadership Institute Program Video
Youth Development Video

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