A DARK PAST… A BRIGHTER FUTURE
The three children are originally from Nebaj, department of Quiché. They used to live with their mother, who was a single mother because she had problems and many disagreements and he decided to abandon them. The mother began to work making tortillas trying to bring the necessary to feed her children and to survive day by day.
The mother, most of the time, was going out with her friends, having fun and going to parties every night. She wasn’t taking care of her children as she should and worst wasn’t giving a good example to them; she was even bringing estrangers to her house and doing indecent acts without caring that the children where there and could see and listen to everything she was doing.
Despite their young ages the mother left them locked in the house during the day; without enough food or water, because she was all day out working at the tortillas place. The house where they were living was made of metal sheets and the heat in that place was unbearable. For the winter season when it rained, the house was almost all the time flooded.
Some neighbors noticed this fact and decided to contact the father of the family to whom they knew him; the father, upon learning of this, went to the local authorities to save his children from the bad treatment they were under the mother’s care. The authorities arrived at the house where the children were locked, crying and dirty and with obvious signs of physical maltreatment and malnutrition. The custody was given temporarily to the father and was withdrawn from the mother.
Despite his lack of economical resources, the father found a temporary place to live in Antigua Guatemala, where he took his children to live and protect them.
While doing home visits, the Social Workers of Asociación Nuestros Ahijados de Guatemala found the children and asked them about their family. They talked about what had happened to them and how they ended up living with their father. Immediately were referred to the offices and they started to receive support from the Project.
The father had no knowledge of laws and didn’t know how to handle the total custody of his children. He didn’t have idea of how to support them with education, since he never had the opportunity to study. Asociación Nuestros Ahijados provided them with Legal, Medical, Psychological and Education assistance.
The authorities conditioned the father by telling him that he could obtain a full custody of the children if he provides them with a better home and education. If he doesn’t give that to the children, they will be taken away and send them to a foster home.
Currently, the children are studying at the Scheel Center, and one of them, the smallest, is studying at the Dreamer Center. They are receiving food, clothes, shoes and the most important thing, they are receiving education. They also will be receiving a house building to improve their living conditions. Now these children can aspire to a much better life and can overcome from both physical and emotional problems, receiving and integrated support from Asociación Nuestros Ahijados.