Christmas in Nicaragua
Posted by Lauren Rochholz on Monday, February 4, 2013 at 4:04 PM PST
Kimberly Friedrich-Feeley recounts PWOB's December trip to Nicaragua
After a brief hiatus, PWOB returned to Nicaragua in December of 2012. While PWOB’s third trip to Nicaragua, it was the first with its new community partner, Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos (NPH). Led by PWOB member and Seattle University faculty Audrey Hudgins, the team of seven students and one staff member spent 10 days working alongside the young men and women of NPH Nicaragua, Casa Padre Wasson.
Casa Padre Wasson, one of many NPH homes for youth in Latin America and the Carribean, serves approximately 250 children and adolescents, or pequeños, from across Nicaragua. Nestled on a lush property near Jinotepe, Casa Padre Wasson is a haven for the youth that call it home. It took very little time for the PWOB team to recognize the strength and importance of the family that NPH Nicaragua has formed for its pequeños. To some it is the family they needed, to others, the family they’ve never had, one which the team was pleased to join—if only for 10 days.
From day one, the team got to work on its primary project: constructing a much-needed post and wire fence around a pasture for the compound’s herd of cattle. With help from a crew of machete-wielding pequeños, the perimeter was cleared and marked for digging. Armed with shovels and macanas, the PWOB crew worked side-by-side with the pequeños digging holes, tamping and placing posts, and stringing barbed wire. Many hands made for light work and the patient pequeños proved to be invaluable teachers for our unskilled group, helping make the project a huge success.
Rest times were equally satisfying. When not working, the team spent time eating, playing, and socializing with the pequeños. Whether playing soccer, giggling, singing songs, or catching a quiet moment to chat, it was these personalized experiences which formed lasting memories for each member of the group.
After a rewarding first trip, we hope to continue partnering with NPH Nicaragua and look forward to future projects at Casa Padre Wasson. To learn more about Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos International, please visit http://www.nph.org/.