We are looking to hire a person to run the organization in our office at Westmount Pharmacy. Heather Brammer has moved to a new position at Swish Maintenance. We wish her well! A description of the position is contained in the following attachment. Please contact Lorraine McCallum for more info – Lorraine@honduranchildren.co
As you read this, the children in Nuevo Paraiso are as excited as children in Canada about Christmas. But what is Christmas like for them?
It is a tradition in Honduras to have a new outfit including shoes to wear on Christmas Eve. The staff and Tia’s at Nuevo are busy organizing new clothes for all of the children in the village. We are very grateful to an anonymous Peterborough donor and to the organizers and supporters of the Tree of Dreams at St. Alphonsus Roman Catholic Church in Peterborough, Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church in Chateauguay and St. Martin of Tours in Ennismore whose gifts help to make Christmas a special celebration.
One of the most heart-warming traditions in the village is the “secret friend” gift exchange. Each child draws a name and then goes into the cafeteria and “buys” a gift with tickets. Each gift is worth a different ticket amount. They learn to give another child a gift that they have personally picked out with the other child’s likes and needs in mind. And they learn the joy of giving!
The children have dinner in their individual houses, and the menu varies in each house but everyone looks forward to the tamales that appear at Christmas time. Unlike tamales here in Canada, they are wrapped in plantain leaves rather than corn husks. Torrejas filled with dulce de leche are a special dessert for the holidays.
Feliz Navidad from all of the children, the Board and staff at Friends of Honduran Children. Merry Christmas to all!
In the short time since the Friends of Honduran Children gift catalogue was launched last year, you have given almost $6,000 with your purchases. Gifts have ranged from a laptop to vitamins and medicines for the children in the village. Many of you have chosen gifts that will help children in the village or at Reyes Irene continue to learn and prepare for their futures.
There are choices for every budget and area of interest – food, school supplies, furniture, and even teachers. You won’t need to wrap your gift or worry if they really like it. We can even make the process easy by sending a card or email to the recipient when you provide their contact information.
Click here to see the gift catalogue.
Thank you so much to the participants and supporters of the recent FoHC Adult Awareness Brigade. Your gifts made so much possible!
Brigade members painted at the elementary school in Nuevo Paraiso. A highlight was the mural painted in the lunchroom by OCAD student Heather Lapp with assistance provided by team members. The rest of the team’s painting was a bit more mundane.
Only Through Education
FoHC Board members on the brigade met with 15 of the full-time students who received scholarships from the FoHC Education Committee. Not only do these young people maintain an average of over 85 percent, they show their appreciation for their scholarships by tutoring fellow students. Two of the young women have started a fundraising program in their community to fund another scholarship.
We cannot thank Lynda Hodgins and Millbrook Cavan United Church enough for their support of scholarships for these students.
As Judy indicated, a visit to a remote school is a highlight of every brigade.
Not only were we able to deliver the planned school supplies, personal items and food for the students, a generous passenger seated beside Anne Morawetz on the flight to Honduras, handed her a $100 US bill when he learned about our work.
In the Village…
And of course, brigaders spent much time with the children in the village. From simply reading to the children at night, spending time making cupcakes or special events like our Halloween party or dinner out for the young men of Santiago Apostle, brigaders demonstrated their personal commitment to making lives better for these children.
Thank you to our corporate supporters. Giant Tiger (Lakefield Highway) donated umbrellas to provide coverage in rain and sun for the Tia’s (housemothers) in the children’s village. Giant Tiger (Lansdowne Street West) gave bags of shoes, t-shirts, shorts and baseball hats. (The hats were for children who walk a long way to get to their school in the mountains.) And thank you to Value Village (Peterborough) for much needed socks.
Interested in the Brigade Experience?
A brigade provides a fascinating opportunity to learn firsthand about the work of Friends of Honduran Children. If you are interested in participating in or organizing a brigade, please contact Allison Grierson at 705.749.1900 or firstname.lastname@example.org
By Ivin Roxana Medina Matute
Ivin arrived in Nuevo Paraiso in 2008. She is presently attending Fleming College thanks to generous sponsors and the support of the College. Thank you! We asked her to write about FoHC from her perspective.
Seeing innocent kids on the streets working, begging for money or food, eating junk from the garbage and young adolescents with babies without economic resources to raise their children instead of being at a school studying hard for a better future is a normal day in Honduras.
A good education, health care and the basic necessities are what all parents want for their kids. Sadly for many of the parents in Honduras this is just that, a wish. Honduras is a very poor country where, while the rich grow in abundance, the poor are sinking in misery, facing low and limited possibilities of growth. Honduran parents feel unable to bring up their children and achieve their dreams.
This is where Friends of Honduran Children appears and plays a great and important role, performing and fulfilling every single word of its mission “Changing Lives”. FoHC gives hope and faith to desperate parents who want to see their children achieve their goals in life and change their whole life story.
FoHC’s efforts are immensely helping to raise children and prepare them for the future, to make a difference in the society that will change and benefit the country. Because of FoHC, the dreams of parents, kids and country continue.
Ivin is enrolled in Tourism program at Fleming. One of the pleasures of being in the Peterborough area is the challenge of outdoor activities. Like most of us though, she hates the deer flies.
Save the Date!
You are invited to attend this year’s AGM at Grace United Church Hall at 581 Howden Street, Peterborough on Saturday October 14, 2017 from 2:00 to 4:00.
Come out and learn how your support has made a difference in Honduras this past year. We hope to see you there!
Come out and support dedicated Grace Volunteers as they prepare for their 12th trip to Honduras!
Saturday, September 9
7AM to 1PM
581 Howden St, Peterborough
Members of the congregation and friends will travel to the Nuevo Paraiso Children’s Village in November to start construction of an office for the school nurse and principal to share. Part of our 5-year construction plan in the Village, the new office will release the existing office space to be used as a classroom.
Not only do these dedicated volunteers raise the brick walls on the site, they are tasked with raising the funds to provide the bricks and other materials that will be used in construction.
The Social Justice Committee of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish Committed to Making a Happy Christmas for the Children
In 2008, Catherine Hooper was walking on a beach in Cuba and struck up a conversation with a nurse from Ontario. She told Catherine about knitting vests for children in Honduras for an organization called World Accord. Recognizing that it would be an ideal project for members of her parish, Catherine expressed interest. Although she never saw the woman again, the knitting instructions were slipped under her door at the hotel. For the Social Justice Committee (SJC) of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish in Chateauguay, the adventure with Honduras began.
Later that year, a former member of the SJC was visiting her son in Peterborough who coincidentally lived down the street from FoHC co-founder, Dr. Jim McCallum. Another link to Honduras!
Catherine was inspired by an article in a newsletter about the Tree of Dreams started at St. Alphonsus Parish by FoHC co-founder Anne McCallum.
After a call to Allison Grierson, FoHC Office Manager, the SJC decided to share Christmas with the children of Nuevo Paraiso by putting up their own Tree of Dreams that Advent. From 2008 to 2016, the Parish has raised almost $15,000 and will be putting up their 10th tree this year.
Thank you OLPH Social Justice Committee Members! Members include from top left: Odette Pottie, Irene Gauthier, Catherine Hooper, Brenda Shanahan (MP for Chateauguay-Lacolle and former committee member), Margaret Campbell. Bottom left: Tess Agustin, Terry Ortiz, Sharon Murphy, and Angee Mercuri. Missing: Cecile Stewart and Erika Romwalter.
The work of the SJC is actively supported by the parish priest, Father Marceliano Serrato Herrera. He is originally from Columbia and knows of the needs of the poor in Central and South America.
Thank you to all of the members of the SJC and parishioners of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish for sharing with the children of Nuevo Paraiso.
If you are interested in your own Tree of Dreams please contact Allison Grierson at email@example.com.
Many Thanks to the Brigaders and the Volunteers and Donors Who Support their Work
Members of the February 2016 Grace Brigade on the ground in Honduras
Members of the congregation and friends will travel to the Nuevo Paraiso Children’s Village in November to start construction of an office for the school nurse and principal to share. Part of our 5-year construction plan in the Village, the new office will release the existing office space to be used as a classroom. With more children in our children’s village, the school is now at capacity and needs more classroom space.
Not only do these dedicated volunteers raise the brick walls on the site, they are tasked with raising the funds to provide the bricks and other materials that will be used in construction. Grace United’s Annual Fall Yard Sale will take place on Saturday, September 9th from 7 AM to 1 PM at 581 Howden Street, Peterborough.
This will be the 12th year that Grace United has undertaken a trip to Honduras through FoHC. For some members of the brigade it will be an opportunity to visit with the children that they sponsor in the children’s village.
Brigade member Debbie March met her sponsored child on her second brigade in 2007. Jose Luis and his sister Ana Paola were in transit to Nuevo Paraiso but the vehicle they were travelling in had broken down by the side of the road. In one of the many “coincidences” that seem to populate our stories, Debbie was in the vehicle that stopped to help. Not only does her brigade work contribute to the well-being of many children in Honduras, it allows her to keep tabs on Jose Luis as he grows up.
You can sponsor a child in Nuevo Paraiso without going on a brigade. For more information visit our website or call 705.745.1900.
Honduran Committee Faced with Difficult Task of Choosing Recipients
Thank you for your gifts to the Education Fund. Last year, your donations helped 17 full-time and 23 part-time students pursue better lives for themselves and their families.
Elementary school in Honduras ends at grade 6. The Nuevo Paraiso High School attracts students from outside the children’s village, but the surrounding area is poor and most families find it hard to provide their children with the luxury of a secondary school education. Each fall the committee members review so many letters from promising students that need your assistance.
Here are two examples of students that are able to go to school, thanks to the support of people like you.
I am Marisol and I am a student at the Nuevo Paraiso High School. I am 13 years old and I am in 8th grade and my average was 91%. I have to walk 2 hours to get to the bus to take it to school. This scholarship will help with that expense as well as with my registration.
My dream is to study agricultural engineering, but my family is poor and they don’t have enough money to help me.
My Dad only has temporary work and when he isn’t working it is hard for them to pay for me to get to school. The scholarship will help me realize my dreams and have a better future.