According to the International Community Foundation (ICF), Mexico is home to more than 700 orphanages. Around 30,000 of the 400,000 parentless children in Mexico inhabit these orphanages. About 100,000 of Mexico’s orphans are homeless, leaving many kids wandering the streets of Mexico. The lack of housing solutions for orphaned children and the abounding problems that orphanages in Mexico face have led to a crisis that requires urgent intervention.
Negative Coverage of Orphanages
The ICF says, “due to the lack of oversight and accountability for orphanages in Mexico,” there have been reports of poor care and abuse within some orphanages. Orphanages also suffer from a lack of funding, which renders these facilities unable to meet the basic needs of the children within their care. Additionally, because Mexico lacks an official national census of orphaned children, it is difficult to track the whereabouts of these children and monitor their living circumstances.
Unfortunately, due to the negative coverage surrounding orphanages across Mexico, gathering support and funding is even more difficult. However, the ICF says, “As a result of increased awareness domestically and abroad, the Mexican government is under pressure to step up their regulation of orphanages and orphanages have been encouraged to improve their operations.”
The Good News
Despite the negative coverage, there are several legitimate orphanages in Mexico that are committed to providing the best care for orphans so that they may lead prosperous lives as productive members of society. These orphanages require support in order to provide the best possible care to the children under their supervision. In order to identify legitimate orphanages in need of support, the ICF subjects orphanages to a screening and approval process to ensure that there will be no misuse of monetary support.
Casa Hogar de Cabo San Lucas is an example of a legitimate life-changing orphanage operating in Mexico. Casa Hogar houses children from 4 to 18 years old and strives to “educate and elevate.” Its ‘education’ goals include increasing the “academics, life skills, moral values, spiritual values and social values” of the children. While its ‘elevate’ goal is to help children live up to their highest potential and exceed societal expectations and norms.
Corazon de Vida (CDV)
The Corazon de Vida (CDV) is a U.S. nonprofit organization that hopes to work on a large scale to transform the lives of orphans in Baja, Mexico. By providing monthly funding and support to orphanages, the CDV looks to provide shelter, education, quality food and a sense of security to children plagued by homelessness. Currently, CDV works in more than 10 orphanages home to more than 500 youth.
The CDV also runs a program to provide older youth with access to university education. Its website explains the program’s accomplishments: “Our university program currently has 54 plus past orphanage residents in college or technical school and serving as role models to their younger siblings.” The work of the CDV goes beyond impacting one generation of kids to impacting the lives of many by creating positive role models and accomplishable goals for the youth to work toward.
The Importance of Supporting Orphanages
As the ICF says in its article on breaking the cycle of poverty in Mexico, improving education and providing homes for abandoned children is essential in decreasing poverty. By supporting orphanages, children have ample opportunity to gain the skills and knowledge to become self-sufficient, which can prevent a life of poverty in the future.
– Brooklynn Rich