NPH OneFamily Reunion in Honduras
Participants of the NPH OneFamily program return to Rancho Santa Fe for a reunion with their NPH family.
Reported by Arielle Augustin
Communications Officer, NPH Honduras
February 11, 2019
My favorite memories are like this one right here,” says Manuel* of his friend Luis* with a chuckle. The 13- and 11-year old are loving their reunion.
After arriving by bus from his home town four hours from NPH Honduras’ main home, he and Luis are picking up right back where they left off, play-fighting and chasing each other around the adolescent boys’ home, Buen Pastor. Manuel is a part of the NPH OneFamily program, and now lives back with his mother. They still receive support from NPH’s social workers and psychologists, and have the opportunity to come back to NPH to catch up with old friends.
“It feels good to be back…really good,” says Manuel.
He admits that being back at NPH reminds him of the weekday chores he used to do in his home, like sweeping, mopping, and cutting grass. But at the same time, he remembers the people he grew to love – especially his favorite caregiver, Francisco or “Uncle Pancho” – and all the cool things that he used to do, like “running, playing with friends, going swimming at the water reservoir, setting off fireworks during Christmas and New Year’s, and participating in the yearly Olympic games.”
Thankfully, he’s not the only one who gets to reminisce on the “good old times.” Through efforts made by the NPH OneFamily program, children who are reintegrated with their families can return to NPH with their caregivers once a year for a reunion with their fellow NPH brothers and sisters.
During those three days, they watch movies by the pond, play relay games at the school, eat meals together, and, best of all, spend time catching up with each other.
Although most of the activities are geared towards the children and youth, their caregivers get to have fun too.
“It’s a spectacular experience; it’s already my second time!” says Manuel’s mom.
Being at the reunion not only allows her son to reconnect with his old friends, but also gives her the opportunity to get to know the places and the people with which he grew up.
“NPH is a beautiful place for the environment and the care that they give to our children. On my part, I can’t complain.”
During the two years since he’s come back home, she’s had the opportunity to see him grow into a kind and responsible young man who’s proven himself to be “an excellent son, an excellent companion, and an excellent student.”
She credits much of his personal success, as well as their success as a family, to NPH for the economic, social, and psychological support that the NPH OneFamily program provides for them.
“NPH has been a great help to me and my son. I am entirely grateful.”
By keeping families like Manuel and his mom together, the NPH OneFamily program is achieving its goal of allowing children to live in a safe and loving environment with their biological families while simultaneously remaining a part of the broader NPH Family.
*Names changed for privacy purposes.
Photo above: Manuel (right) and one of his best friends, Luis. Photos below: A special mass is offered to welcome the NPH OneFamily participants; girls participating in a potato sack race during the reunion; Manuel and his mother enjoy their visit at NPH.