Small steps – Professional training for single mothers in Honduras

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In May 2017 we visited Honduras for the first time. There we got to know the project "Pasos Pequeñitos" (in English "small steps") and decided to take action to keep this great project alive.

The day care center in the Honduran capital Tegucigalpa gives young single mothers the opportunity to finish their education. While their children are cared for in a safe and loving environment, the mothers can catch up on a high school education, get a professional training or attend university.

Honduras is one of the most violent countries in the world. Crime, poverty and insecurity are commonplace for many families. The prices for food and even for water are barely affordable for the majority of the population. Out of necessity, many families send their children to work to feed the family. It is therefore particularly difficult for young single mothers. The mothers of the day-care center "Pasos Pequeñitos" come from very poor, sometimes dangerous neighborhoods. We want to give them the opportunity to obtain an education, so they can take care of themselves and their children in the future. Support the project now:
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In the day-care center "Pasos Pequeñitos", 20 children between the ages of one and six are cared for on a daily basis by qualified Honduran day-care workers. From 7:30 am to 7 pm the children have the chance to play and learn in safety. They also get three freshly prepared meals during this time. In 2005, a former NPH volunteer (Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos) started this project. Today the financing of the day-care center is unclear and PEN PAPER PEACE wants to secure the continuation of the project. Since 2017, we have therefore been supporting "Pasos Pequeñitos" financially.

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Digyana, the coordinator of the Pasos Pequenitos project:

Digyana Hernández, the coordinator for Pasos Pequeñitos is ''hermana mayor''. She grew up in NPH Honduras and arrived on August 20, 1997 when shewas 9-years-old. Before living at NPH, she lived in a situation of extreme vulnerability and poverty.
She grew up in NPH Honduras and arrived on August 20, 1997 when she was 9 years old. Her parents had five daughters of which Digyana is the second. Of all of them, only four were part of NPH.
For her part, Digyana took advantage of all the opportunities NPH offered her. He studied his elementary school and learned the trade of cutting and sewing. Upon completion, she studied Administration-oriented Pedagogy and after that she studied a Master's Degree in Human Resources. She worked for World Vision and after that she rejoined the NPH family in the Montessori Program at the school located in the Ranch. She worked there for five years and now she has been integrated into the Pasos Pequeñitos Program for a year as the coordinator.

What gives you strength to do this work?
"Working to change the life of many families is just priceless. Getting to know their situation and get connected to be able to support them is a ''daily vitamin'' to do my job with love and dedication."

What moves you?
"The story behind each face of the mother or father."

What is important to you?
"Changing the life of the families, but mostly, of the kids."

Marcia, main educator of Pasos Pequenitos project:

Marcia started working with Pasos Pequeñitos in 2009. The Program, at that time, was not part of NPH, it was an independent program that survived with donations.
She began as the general assistant of the nursery since she is a commercial expert and has a diploma in computer science. Before, she was in charge of the processes related to the menu and early stimulation. At the moment, she continues to work for Pasos Pequeñitos as an educator. It has been 12 years working forthis Program, in which she is happy to work.

What gives you strength to do this work?
"Being able to see how the child is growing up with better possibilities."

What moves you?
"The stories of the single mothers, since my mom was a single mother. I know how difficult it is. Then, I try to support them as much as I can."

What is important to you?
"Because Pasos Pequeñitos goes beyond care. Now we have the Montessori area, where they can
learn more than the basics."

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