Raising children, Supporting families, Transforming lives.
NPH stands for Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos which means ‘Our Little Brothers and Sisters’.
We help vulnerable children and families in 9 countries across Latin America and the Caribbean. We help children reach their full potential and break out of the cycle of poverty.
Poverty in this region
Life is very difficult for families who are struggling in Latin America, as they often don’t have access to healthy food, stable housing, quality education and job opportunities. There is little social welfare in these countries, which means children can easily fall through the gaps. Poverty can lead to families breaking down and children being abandoned, abused or orphaned.
“The livelihoods of almost half of the region’s families with children are hanging by a thread,” said Jean Gough, UNICEF Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean. “They live day to day in survival mode and can’t afford to make plans beyond the next two weeks.” (UNICEF article 2022)
Since 1954 NPH has supported over 20,000 children and families across 9 countries. We work in three areas – Prevention, Protection and Preparation
We strive to prevent families from breaking down by providing access to medical care, healthy food and education. We provide social services that Government departments cannot or will not provide to vulnerable children and families.
When a child is unable to live with their biological family, our social workers and the court system within the country investigates the case.
When it’s in the best interest of the child, we provide a loving family for life in one of our homes. We try to keep siblings together, as this helps the children maintain a sense of family, security and belonging. We also encourage contact with biological family members, as every child has a right to know their biological family and understand their story. If family reintegration becomes possible, we provide ongoing support through our OneFamily programme.
At NPH we prepare each child for an independent life, where they can be free from poverty. We provide education from preschool through to university (or vocational training). Many of our programmes prepare our young people for life beyond NPH, with a strong sense of identity, useful skills and values.
Before and After NPH
Edwin Vallecillo came to NPH Honduras with his siblings in 1994 when both of his parents passed away. Thanks to NPH’s support he is now a doctor. Inspired by the work that NPH does, Edwin continues to support his NPH family as the International Director of Medical Services. Edwin shares his story in this video.
Education and Development
We support children and young people throughout their educational journey. From preschool through to university or vocational training, NPH gives children the tools they need to succeed.
Education enables young people to become independent and break out of the cycle of poverty. Gender equality education is also important at NPH. Here is more information about our Powerful Girls programme.
Health and Wellbeing
St Damien Paediatric Hospital
In Haiti we run the only children’s hospital in the whole country. Every year we provide over 80,000 medical services to children, babies and pregnant women. Find out more here.
Our NPH homes and community centres are found in the countryside and we grow a lot of our own food. This reduces our environmental impact, keeps food costs low, and gives the children a healthy diet. It also teaches the children about healthy nutrition and sustainable food systems.
One in five of the children we care for have special medical needs, such as asthma, cerebral palsy, epilepsy or HIV. There are nearly 19.1 million children with disabilities in Latin America and the Caribbean (Unicef, 2021). There is a lot of stigma in Latin America against children with disabilities. Sadly they are often abused or excluded from society.
At NPH we work hard to give all our children and adolescents a good quality of life. For our children with chronic conditions, we provide lifelong, around-the-clock care. Without NPH, many of these children would not be able to survive and thrive on their own.
All of our programmes include a clinic to ensure that vulnerable children and families have access to quality, affordable healthcare. Dr. Dora Gomez is our on-site doctor at NPH Honduras. She actually grew up at our home and has come back to help her ‘younger brothers and sisters.’
Building and Strengthening Families
At NPH it’s important to prevent families from breaking down. That’s why we provide a range of community scholarships and services to children from low-income families. Over 3000 children are a part of our community scholarship programme. These children live with their families while receiving access to healthy meals, medical care and practical support such as uniforms and stationery. In all of the countries where we work (except Peru), we run our own schools, where community and internal students attend.
Our community outreach programmes provide over 100,000 services each year. At NPH Dominican Republic and Honduras we work in partnership with One World Surgery to provide affordable surgeries to low-income families.
Our OneFamily programme means that we can meet the best interests of the children living in our homes. Sometimes a family’s situation changes, or a family member is found who could be a good caregiver for the child. Our social workers and the courts investigate the family’s situation and talk with the child to find out whether it’s in their best interest to be reintegrated with their biological family.
In Latin America poverty is often a barrier to reintegration. Government agencies are often unwilling to provide ongoing support to children who are reintegrated with family. This puts a child at further risk of family disintegration or abandonment.
At NPH we believe that no child should be separated from their family due to poverty. That’s why NPH provides a monthly stipend to the family. which is used to cover the child’s education, nutrition and healthcare costs. This support continues for as long as the child is attending school. Our social workers are in regular phone contact with the families and the children. They also visit the children and their families to evaluate their progress and provide any extra support.
Our child sponsors receive quarterly Wellness Reports, including photos of the child with their family.
We are proud to be able to strengthen families in this way.