Joy in Transition

How the joy of one girl can help an entire home.
December 15, 2017 - Honduras

Lisseth choosing between her colored pencils

“We always put a tree up to share, and we are all in our homes together,” Lisseth* explains as she draws her picture of Christmas with her NPH family.

Lisseth, an energetic 9-year-old, is always quick to smile and share her positivity with the other kids.

Her high positivity and seemingly endless joy in simple things rub off as smiles on the other children’s faces.

At the end of 2014, the Honduran child protective services branch was shut down by the Honduran government before opening a new program. As a result, the government asked NPH to take in around 60 new children. Lisseth and her 7-year-old sister Liz* were among this group that entered NPH Honduras between November and December 2014.

While a time of difficult transition and confusion for many of the children, and while NPH caregivers and the other children tried to help ease the transition and welcome the new little ones to the family, Lisseth’s positivity provided joy for many of the new children still adjusting.

She remembers that first Christmas fondly. “It was a lot of new things, a lot of new people, but I was with my sister, and we had presents under our tree,” she recounted.

Lisseth now has spent three Christmases here at Rancho Santa Fe. A lot of things have changed for her since that first Christmas here.

Reflecting on these changes, Lisseth explains “I have a lot of friends here, and the tías [caregivers] are always around to help out.”

Each year NPH Honduras puts on many fun activities during Christmas Eve and Christmas day. Staff or volunteers dress up as Santa to entertain the children. Caregivers help ensure there are presents under the tree for each child.

“I think that is one of the things that brings me the most joy.” She comments on the activities she remembers from the past three years.

When asked about the people in her drawing, Lisseth explained, “There are always visitors and volunteers coming back around during the Christmas season. Sometimes they have yellow hair like her, and next to her is me.”

When asked about the stars in her drawing, her answer was a little more straightforward. “There is usually a star on the Christmas tree. And the others...I just like stars...that’s all!”

*Name changed to protect privacy.

Riley Sexton   
Communication Officer

You may be only one person in the world, but you may be all the world to one child.
—Fr. William Wasson




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