Corazon de Niña
Orphanages are common in Mexico and Puerto Vallarta is no exception. “Changing the course of history – One child at a time” is the philosophy of Fundación Corazon de Niña, which translates as Heart of the Child. Corazon de Niña has two homes in Puerto Vallarta. They stand adjacent to each other; one sheltering girls, the other housing the male population. These are at-risk children and two-thirds are female. On average there are around forty children living in this nurturing, loving environment, mas o menos. Puerto Vallarta takes a pride in supporting this non-profit institute. Ages run from newborn to twenty-three years. Without the aid of local businesses, keeping things going would be a lot tougher.
The goals of Corazon de Niña are simple. Security, love, values and knowledge. These are the foundations of a well balanced person who can grow up to be a responsible adult. Attention is focused on the comforts of a normal home: clean clothes after a shower; hair that is stylishly brushed and combed, with ribbons and braids for girls; toothpaste, soap and shampoo, things most of us don’t think about on a daily basis. A safe place to sleep with clean sheets and blankets; nourishing food served at a table where one can share thoughts and ideas, like a family does; friendship. An uncomplicated pedestal of unconditional love is the strength of this loving home in Puerto Vallarta. Days at Corazon de Niña function without punishment; no voices raised in anger; without accusations or judgment. Counselors work to teach by their personal example and children are encouraged to seek spirituality. Gentleness and understanding with communication are the cornerstones of lessons. Children are taught with powerful values that aim to guide them to be confident, generous and supportive as they mature and grow. With education, it’s their belief that children can break the bonds of poverty that have affected generations. The encouragement to further learning by enrolling in post-secondary education is a prime objective. Most of these children go on to lead successful adult lives.
Children often arrive at Corazon de Niña in deplorable condition. It is not unusual for them to be ill, stricken with parasites, lice and scabies. Many are victims of horrible abuse and in need of therapy, dental and medical attention, and a safe place where they can live without dread waking up in the morning. It’s a joy to see the growth and development of these children, learn some of their stories and how they’ve progressed.
To learn more about Fundación Corazon de Niña and see how you can help, visit their website http://fundacioncorazon.mx.
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