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Aug 27, 2019

Tackling ADHD With Love

The door to Denis’s classroom is completely covered with colorful phrases, drawings, and clippings. Among the phrases written by hand, one stands out: "We learn from mistakes and celebrate the success of others." Carelia, the teacher and creator of the murals, smiles and proudly explains: “Students must be encouraged, especially those who have learning disabilities.” Such has been the case for Denis, a 7-year-old boy from a family with limited resources who was diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

In 2018, Yerlin, Denis’s mother, went to the Fabretto Education Center in Esteli, Nicaragua, to seek help for her son. “At school, Denis suffered from abuse. The students were afraid of him, and the teachers constantly scolded him because they did not understand ADHD,” recalls the mother. But thanks to the professional support received at Fabretto, in a short time, Denis began to show significant progress and to smile as he had rarely done before.

At Fabretto, Denis received psychological therapy and his teacher, Carelia, has played a critical role in preparing him to become a part of a regular classroom. The teacher has received training in play-based educational methodologies for primary education students, similar to Montessori. Through playful activities, children have managed to transform from mere recipients of information to protagonists of their own learning. “Less than a year ago, Denis did not know how to read or write. Today, he is an outstanding student and loves to visit the center’s library frequently,” explains the elementary school teacher.

Carelia has taught the rest of the students to serve as support for Denis. Through social reinforcements such as hugs, praises, or any other manifestation of affection, they manifest to him how well he has acted. “Children with hyperactivity have to be treated with patience; here [at Fabretto] we are convinced that the best solution to any problem is love.”

Denis’s mother, sister, and grandmother have also learned the value of affection in the child’s recovery and development. “Before, my daughter and I cried because we did not understand what was happening to Denis. We did not know how to deal with him, and that’s why we scolded him all the time. But Fabretto’s staff has instilled in us the patience and techniques we need to help him with his studies at home,” says his grandmother, Rosa.

Denis has shown not only great progress in his social, emotional, and educational skills but also a significant change in his nutritional state. “Before in his most critical moments, he could not eat, but now, he remains at the table and finishes his entire meal calmly,” says his mother, Yerlin.

Thanks to the joint work between the family and the school, today, Denis can identify the critical moments of hyperactivity on his own and then put into practice self-control techniques. “When Denis is very restless, he performs breathing exercises on his own and asks for permission to leave the classroom to walk for a bit,” explains his teacher, Carelia.

At Fabretto, we are convinced that through quality personalized education, and by working hand in hand with all the members of the community, we can create environments where children like Denis can truly thrive. Thanks to people like you, we can continue to support children like Denis.


Jun 3, 2019

Meet the Faces of Resilience


For many in Nicaragua, 2018 was about resilience. In the midst of a socio-economic crisis, members of La Familia Fabretto – parents, teachers, students – made exceptional sacrifices to continue making progress toward advancing education in the most underserved communities, even during the most difficult phase of armed conflict.

To review 2018 is to honor the Nicaraguan people and their ability to keep moving forward amidst adversity. I have seen teachers like Francis risk it all just to keep the doors of our centers open and provide a safe space for children to play, learn, and dream; determined mothers like Neydis who, despite living in poverty, are keeping the faith and hope of a better future for their children; young women like Katherine who are making a steady income through farming in the midst of an economic crisis.

Having witnessed their beautiful resilience, I have no doubt Nicaragua will bloom like a spring flower and thrive. This is the country that inspired our founder, Padre Fabretto, to leave everything behind for its people.

Today we honor their resilient stories and recognize your outstanding generosity entrusted to Fabretto. Thank you for believing in Nicaragua.



Kevin Marinacci




Read our 2018 Annual Report

Mar 6, 2019

A trained teacher marks the difference

Teacher training in Esteli.
Teacher training in Esteli.

The Salomón Ibarra center, located in Estelí, is one of the thirty educational centers that has concluded the first cycle of an innovative education project called CHISPA. The initiative consists of creating an innovative and dynamic learning environment in mathematics to replace traditional teaching methods and paradigms in each of the primary schools.

CHISPA serves students from first to third grade of primary school. Each year, over 350 students in Esteli participate in this innovative teaching model. “Participating in the CHISPA project has strengthened teachers’ knowledge and techniques, through time management, problem-based learning, the flipped model, and the use of playful tools such as educational treasure hunts, math cards, math bingo, coding the alphabet, graphic organizers, dominoes, sudoku, among others,” explains Geneli Quiroz, Director of the Salomón Ibarra center.

Teachers learned methodologies such as active and contextual learning, learning through play, and the use of technology as an educational tool for the development of critical mathematical thinking, and problem-solving.

Thank you for your continued support. Thanks to you, we can bring education to underserved children in Nicaragua.

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