Today our education team experienced how the Honduran people care for those who need it the most. Our first visit of the day was to Intergar. This facility was started in 1998 by parents of children with Down Syndrome who wanted a place for their children to interact, learn, and grow to be the best they could be. The organization teaches, trains and provides therapies for over 200 children per week and has a waiting list of almost 400 children. We observed the activities provided for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers. We watched speech therapy being done as well as physical activities for teenagers. Everything is accomplished by a staff of eight and the active involvement of all parents. Our therapists got their hands on as many children as they could, sharing therapy ideas with both parents and staff.
The team then traveled to Senderos Orphanage. Our visit here focused on a group of special needs children who are housed in one large room. These nine boys had been moved from another government run orphanage that closed this year. Their caregivers stated that the care they had previously received had been subpar. They were determined to give the boys as much love as they could. Once again, our therapists and doctor jumped right in, showing the caregivers tips on positioning, encouraging communication, and overall positive interaction methods. We all left feeling overwhelmed at the task these caregivers have, but grateful for the opportunity to help and encourage them.
This week has been called an “education week.” There has been a great deal of knowledge shared with a wide variety of people. All team members are in agreement, though, that we are the ones who have learned the most. We have been taught the value of patience, flexibility, devotion, determination and the willingness to care for our fellowman. These are core traits found in the people of Honduras. We feel blessed to have been given this chance to give and receive. We all leave changed. ¡Gracias a Dios!