01 Nov The Dorie’s Promise Redemptive Story: Caring for Children in Orphanages
Two decades of work in Guatemala has taught us the complexity of orphan care and family preservation. Seeing the immediate and real needs of young women and children in 2000 brought us to Guatemala, but understanding the many social realities of orphan care kept us here and expanded our work. Through our continued work and presence, we foster opportunities for the redemption of precious lives throughout Guatemala.
The Dorie’s Promise Redemptive Story is three-fold: Preserve families on the brink of crisis. Care for orphaned and abandoned children residing in orphanages. Transform the lives of children living at Dorie’s Promise.
This is the third post in our Dorie’s Promise Redemptive Story series:
Caring for Children in Orphanages.
Each week our teams visit children in orphanages scattered throughout Guatemala City. Ranging in size and caring for children with a wide range of needs, these homes are managed by the Guatemalan government.
Finding accurate numbers of children in care through the Guatemalan family court system is difficult. Even without exact figures, we know that thousands of children find themselves in either public or private orphanages. Similar to the family court and foster care systems in America, children in danger are placed in these homes for their safety until a time when permanent arrangements can be made.
Government orphanages have faced intense scrutiny in recent years, reaching a fevered pitch following the deadly fire at the Virgen de la Ascunsion orphanage in 2017. Following that fire, children from that orphanage were moved to various other homes throughout Guatemala, including Dorie’s Promise.
Working with government orphanages for the past decade, we understand the difficulties they face. Many times facing great needs, they struggle to maintain ideal staffing levels while providing care for an increasing population. Our role allowed us to come alongside a few orphanages and provide supplemental support to their staff and children.
Our teams continue to visit children in government orphanages each week. The regular visits allow our staff to establish relationships at the orphanages, furthering our understanding of their needs.
During any given visit, you’ll find team members playing games with children. You’ll hear laughter and even catch a glimpse of staff members shyly laughing as they look on. Children have the opportunity to share their stories as they wish, helping everyone understand better how poverty influences every aspect of life. Through games, gifts, prayer, and support, we help these children and staffs remember how much we care about all of Guatemala’s hurting children.
Together, we’re working to care for children who have experienced a crisis in their families and need people who will care for and defend them during periods of uncertainty.