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Westfalia Orphanage Christmas Drive 2014

2014 November 18

5th annual sonrisasenperu.org Christmas party

On Saturday, December 20 we’re hosting our 5th annual Sonrisasenperu Christmas party for 100+ kids of Westfalia Orphanage in Peru. But, as always, we need some help to make it happen.

The kids come from broken, abusive homes, abandonment or their families gave them up because they simply don’t have the money to take care of them. These kids don’t have electronics games, bikes, or televisions. They don’t go to the cinema on a Saturday night or enjoy trips away with family. There are 4 or 5 children per room and there are 12-15 children per ‘house’. They live in an orphanage compound in the mountains of Cieneguilla on the edge of Lima and will be spending Christmas alone, without family. So we want to brighten up their Christmas and help them to experience a happy, loving time.


What’s happening?

We are organising 2 gifts for each of the 100+ children. We’ll also be providing a traditional turkey lunch, snacks, drinks, and dessert. We’re going to have lots of games, competitions, and prizes. There will also be a live show for the kids which includes singing, dancing and of course, Santa handing out the gifts! Oh yeah, and we’ll be providing lots of fun!

… BUT we really need your help!


How can I help?

Donations have helped us provide many things for the orphanage over the years, including a permanent, industrial water filter which cleans river and well-water when the kids were drinking dangerously polluted water which didn’t meet World Health Organisation standards. Your donations helped to renovate one of the childrens’ 24 year old houses to meet new government requirements. You helped fund a new industrial stove to replace a gas-leaking, 22 year old stove as well as a load of new pots and pans. You’ve helped provide all kinds of classes over the years. You’ve helped replace broken windows and provided shoes, clothes, blankets and literally tonnes of food and essential supplies to the orphanage. But we need your help once again.

If you can help out please send us a donation. We need to make sure 100+ children get at least one present, a memorable turkey lunch, snacks, drinks, and games. The orphanage’s food stocks are always low over the Christmas break so we also want to buy food provisions such as rice, beans, potatoes, meat, eggs and milk. If you’ve never donated and been a bit hesitant…now is your chance.

If you’re here in Lima, Peru and want to donate a gift or food, please send us an email (‘Contact Us’ at the top of the page). You can also see the 2013 Sonrisasenperu Christmas party here!

Please post this on your facebook page to help spread the word! Thanks for helping make a difference :)

New water pump – Thank You!!

2014 June 6
by scott

First use of the new water pump! Our new water pump means we can clean water tanks at the orphanage by safely pumping out the water.

It’s also an essential part of our 2014 Clean Water Project. The first job being cleaning the 6 metre-deep well which has been a little contaminated recently. We needed to clean the well using chlorine and then safely empty the well to a location away from agriculture and the children. This was only possible with the new pump!


Our new project will separate this well water from the river water thereby stopping contamination from the dirty river source. This will bring the orphanage water within World Health Organisation safety levels! Thanks to those who donated to make this vital purchase possible!! :)

Sad news – Project Alejandra

2014 May 16
by scott

Sad news from the Sonrisasenperu family. We have been supporting the wonderful but very poor family of Alejandra over the last couple of years. It started with a food donation at Christmas time and some gifts for a poor child but turned into regular help with food and also tuition for Alejandra in an attempt to improve her grades up to the level of other students. Her mother, Aunty and grandmother were illiterate and could not help her with any kind of homework. You can see their story here. As you can see by the photos the family are extremely poor and really struggle. They live on a concrete floor and their “windows” don’t have glass. They don’t even have a bathroom/toilet but need to share a communal bathroom with 3 other families at the back of the housing complex.

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I just discovered an hour ago that the Aunty, Maria, had passed away. Maria had kidney renal failure, and needed dialysis three times a week to drain the body of fluids, toxins, and balance electrolytes, which functioning kidneys would normally do. She had had this condition for over 20 years and needed a kidney transplant. Sadly, her fight ended today. This is Maria in the photo above in yellow. You can see the condition of her right arm from the many years of dialysis to remove her body’s fluids since her kidneys didn’t work.

We would like to help the family with their funeral arrangements and are seeking some help to make this possible. Maria will be buried 4 hours outside of Lima in her home town. If you can help out please send us a donation. It will be much appreciated.

I just got back from visiting the family and the total cost is US$1250 or S/3500 local currency.

 

Lima volunteers needed this Saturday May 10!

2014 May 4
by scott

Hi everyone. for those in LIMA PERU…Are you interested in getting your hands dirty THIS SATURDAY MAY 10 and helping out an orphanage with around 100 amazing kids? It’s a part of a huge water project which will see Westfalia Orphanage water quality rise above World Health Organisation levels, provide year-round, safe water access, update old, faulty pipes, provide the orphanage with a newly government-required fire-hydrant capability, and an orchard complete with 100 fruit trees and drip irrigation! Big!

We’re continuing work started last volunteer day cutting a staircase into the hill where the highest new tank is going to go (see photos above). We need stairs cut into the mountain because that tank will require regular access and it’s pretty risky as is. We’ll also be leveling and preparing an area where the three new domestic water tanks will go. All this work is hard labor with pickaxes and shovels, although we got the super hard stuff out of the way last time.

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Westfalia Orphanage is situated in Cieneguilla which is one of the most natural, beautiful places in Lima, if not Peru so you’ll be working while looking at amazing, huge mountains.
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It’ll be a fun day and you’ll know that you’re directly helping to improve the water conditions for around 100 orphans. I’ll give everyone a tour of the orphanage and you get to meet these great kids. Also, once we complete these water improvements all volunteers will be entitled to as much water as they can drink and carry! :p

playing

Please send me a message as soon as possible to confirm numbers and work out transport. You’re welcome to bring friends too! It will be a great day. Thanks everyone!

Lima volunteers needed this Saturday April 12!

2014 April 9

Hi everyone. for those in LIMA PERU…Are you interested in getting your hands dirty THIS SATURDAY April 12 and helping out an orphanage with around 100 amazing kids? We’re beginning plans for a huge water project which will see Westfalia Orphanage water quality rise above World Health Organisation levels, provide year-round, safe water access, update old, faulty pipes, provide the orphanage with a newly government-required fire-hydrant capability, and an orchard complete with 100 fruit trees and drip irrigation! Big!

So we’re starting now by cutting a staircase into the hill where the highest new tank is going to go (see photos above). We need stairs cut into the mountain because that tank will require regular access and it’s pretty risky as is. We’ll also be leveling and preparing an area where the three new domestic water tanks will go. All this work is hard labor with pickaxes and shovels.  We’re hoping to get up to 20 people to get the job done in one day.

DSC07554 (Medium)

Westfalia Orphanage is situated in Cieneguilla which is one of the most natural, beautiful places in Lima, if not Peru so you’ll be working while looking at amazing, huge mountains.
DSC07548 (Medium)

It’ll be a fun day and you’ll know that you’re directly helping to improve the water conditions for around 100 orphans. I’ll give everyone a tour of the orphanage and you get to meet these great kids. Also, once we complete these water improvements all volunteers will be entitled to as much water as they can drink and carry! :p

playing

Please send me a message as soon as possible to confirm numbers and work out transport. You’re welcome to bring friends too! It will be a great day. Thanks everyone!

Scott

Help! New water pump needed

2014 April 4

URGENT!!!

Westfalia Orphanage has an urgent need, as well as an important recurring need, for a gasoline-powered portable water pump.  They normally require a pump like this to assist in the annual cleaning of their water tanks and the existing portable pump is irreparably broken.  The urgent need is also to be able to support a well disinfection procedure to assess their well’s ability to provide clean drinking water to the children and staff of the orphanage.  If the procedure is successful it will make a major improvement in the health and quality of water to the kids and they’ll be able to drink the water out of their taps in their houses.  Without this pump, we’re unable to accomplish this procedure to test how the well responds to the disinfection.

Honda pump

The pump will safely dispose of the highly chlorinated water after the disinfection process.  The only safe location to dispose of the 20,000 liters of chlorinated water is above the well’s tank site which requires a portable pump to pump it there.  Without this pump, this disinfection procedure cannot occur.

In addition to this application, this pump will be used several times a year to empty the various water storage tanks so they can be cleaned.  In addition to that, it will serve as an important emergency water pump if the existing pumps have maintenance problems.

A large hardware store in Lima called Sodimac has the ideal pump, a Honda WB30XT 3” portable pump priced at US$465.  Westfalia Orphanage  would also need around 25m of discharge hose for another US$107 bringing the total to  US$573.

If you can help out purchase this vital pump please send a donation or help spread the word by copying this post onto your Facebook or twitter. This pump is also vital to our biggest project yet, Westfalia Orphanage Clean Water Project 2014, and any extra money will go toward the US$32,500 needed for that.

Thanks for helping to make a difference!

Westfalia Orphanage Christmas Party 2013

2014 March 31

On Saturday 21st December, Sonrisasenperu hosted our 4th annual Westfalia Orphanage Christmas Party. It was a huge event made possible with lots of help from so many people. A special thanks to Alex and Business Links Institute, Sean C. and family, George S., Mahlon for the amazing photos, and everybody who contributed with gifts, food, or their time! (Way too many names to list here – but you know who you are. You really lit up the day for these kids!). My sincere apologies for taking so long to do this write-up but it’s been hectic of late. I lost my entire computer hard-drive just before Christmas (with no backup!), busy doing the Christmas thing, and my wife and I had our baby, Cristina, on January 4. So time is something I haven’t had a lot of lately.

The party was the best we’ve ever had with an amazing show with dancers, DJ, singing, dancing, games and prizes, face-painting, the usual traditional turkey lunch, and Santa and helpers were handing out the gifts this year which the kids loved. It was such a special day for the 100+ orphans that live at the remote orphanage in Cieneguilla on the outskirts of Lima, Peru.

We had a huge trampoline with safety net and it was amazing seeing how happy the kids were! It was definitely something new and exciting for them.

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Like every year, each child received two gifts and it was so rewarding to see the looks on their faces as they came up and collected them from Santa and his helpers. These aren’t kids who have bikes, cell phones, playstations, or toys we took for granted growing up so their faces showed how exciting it really was for them.

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The kids were very busy familiarizing themselves with their new gifts which was great to see.

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As well as those who got involved in the gift process I’d like to thank those that came out and spent time with the children. It meant a lot to them to spend such a great day with good people.

A big thank you to those who have helped us make this event so special. And thank you to all those who have donated funds, food, clothes, and their time to these amazing children. For over 4 years now I have personally seen amazing changes in these children. They all come from terrible situations whether it be physical or sexual abuse, abandonment, from the streets, or simply that their families cannot afford to care for them. They come from all parts of Peru to join this big family. And they continually grow in character from shy and reserved children into loving, confident, caring, empathetic teenagers. And this doesn’t occur simply from dropping off food or clothes but from constant contact and letting them know that people do care about them, and that they are worthwhile. And the children are well aware of the global help they receive and constantly ask me about the people and countries that contribute. So thank you for making a difference in the lives of others.

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Sonrisasenperu has some very important projects coming up for 2014 including a HUGE water project which includes building a high capacity water filter and several large water towers to run clean water to every building at the orphanage (currently there is only one clean water point). This would put a stop to the use of contaminated river water. The project includes the planting of 100 fruit trees and drip irrigation to provide a self-sustaining food source for the orphanage. We will also be assisting in the upgrade of the childrens’ rundown, 24 year old accommodation. We also continue to provide food and clothing for the 100 orphans at Westfalia as well as other rural children in need.

If you can help out please send a donation or help spread the word by copying this post onto your facebook or twitter.

Thanks for helping to make a difference!

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If you can help out please send a donation or help spread the word by copying this post onto your facebook or twitter.

Thanks for making a difference! :)

Westfalia Orphanage Christmas Drive 2013

2013 October 16

What is it?

On Saturday, December 21 we’re hosting our annual Sonrisasenperu Christmas party for 100+ kids of Westfalia Orphanage in Peru. These kids all come from broken, abusive homes, abandonment or their families gave them up because they simply don’t have the money to take care of them. These kids don’t have electronics games, bikes, or televisions. They don’t go to the cinema on a Saturday night or enjoy trips away with family. They share a room with 3 or 4 other children and there are 12-15 kids per ‘house’. They live in an orphanage compound in the mountains of Cieneguilla on the far edge of Lima and we want to brighten up their Christmas which is traditionally a sad time for them as they don’t have the family time we all have.


What’s happening?

We are organising presents for over 100 children. Last year we managed to give each child 2 presents. We’ll also be providing a traditional turkey lunch, snacks, drinks, and dessert. We’re going to have lots of games, competitions, and prizes. There will also be a live show for the kids which includes singing and dancing. Oh yeah, and we’ll be providing lots of fun! … BUT we really need your help!

How can I help?

In the past donations have helped us provide permanent, clean drinking water when the kids were using polluted river water. You’ve helped fund a new industrial stove to replace a gas-leaking, 22 year old stove as well as a load of new pots and pans. You’ve helped replace broken windows and provided shoes, clothes, blankets and literally tonnes of food and essential supplies to the orphanage. But we need you to dig deep again. If you can help out please send us a donation. We need to make sure 100+ children get at least one present, a memorable turkey lunch, snacks, drinks, games, prizes, etc. The orphanage’s food stocks are traditionally low over the Christmas break so we also want to buy food provisions such as rice, beans, potatoes, meat, eggs and milk. If you’ve never donated and been a bit hesitant…now is your chance.

If you’re here in Lima, Peru and want to donate a gift or food, please send us an email (‘Contact Us’ at the top of the page). You can also see the 2012 Sonrisasenperu Christmas party here! Or our 2011 Christmas party here!

Please post this on your facebook page to help spread the word! Thanks for helping make a difference :)

Renovations update

2013 June 24

Hi everyone! Quick  renovations update for Casa (house) 2 at Westfalia Orphanage on the outskirts of Lima, Peru which houses around 100 children. Recent changes in Peruvian law have meant that we need to urgently renovate many of the buildings at the orphanage. Work has began but, sadly, stalled again due to lack of money :(

Good news first! We managed to do most of the concreting, get some tiles down, and complete a lot of one of the bathrooms (we just need to do the floor tiles and install the toilets).

Bad news … the water filter we installed last year for clean water needed it’s annual service ($185 for U.S. parts) and the water pump decided to start leaking, requiring another $55 to repair (the amazing Randy repaired these free!).

This, plus the constant food requirements of the 100 kids has made completing the project impossible.  The kids from House 2 are still living with the other kids so we really want to get them back in their own house in comfort.

So there is a real urgency to get Casa 2 repaired and renovated to allow the 15 children to move back in. There is also an urgency because if the work isn’t done quickly, and the government agencies aren’t satisfied that the orphanage meets the health & safety requirements, then the permit for the orphanage is at risk of being revoked or their permitted capacity downgraded.  We do not want to see any of these children transferred to another orphanage because of a shortage of space due to inability to meet the deadline for completing these required renovations and satisfying the government ministries. Most of the 100 children have been at this orphanage all their lives. This is their home. Their family.

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Help! If you can help out please send us an urgent donation. We really need to get this finished asap. And please, share the link of this post on your FB and help spread the news! Thanks!

Westfalia Orphanage children’s housing renovations

2013 February 18

After a very busy but rewarding December at Westfalia orphanage giving the kids a Christmas to remember,  it is time to move on to our next project. We had been talking about renovating the now 24 year old buildings that house the 100 children for a while now but after recent government inspections we have had to speed up that plan. The 100 orphans are lodged in 6 houses which accommodate up to 15 children per house. At the moment each house has 2 bathrooms, one for the boys, and one for the girls. Within each bathroom is one toilet, one shower, and one sink. So you can imagine the difficulties of 15 children plus 2 carers trying to get ready for school in two small bathrooms. Besides being 24 years old and in need of repair/renovation, new government laws make it necessary to double that capacity thereby providing 2 toilets, 2 showers and 2 sinks per bathroom.

The government regulations apply to various parts of the buildings so we need to do the bathrooms, kitchen, bedrooms, lounge/dining area, and the large laundry area where the children wash their clothes by hand. This includes tiling the entire floor area where there was bare concrete before.

The children from Casa (House) 2 had been moved to the other houses to allow for renovations thereby making the other 5 houses very overcrowded. Renovations had just started when Defense Civil (the previously mentioned government department) told the orphanage that they had to install concrete security zones (round concrete pads) in front of every building, as a gathering place in the event of an emergency such as an earthquake. They also included a list of other required changes which they deemed prerequisites for the continuation of the orphanage. This required the immediate halt of Casa 2 renovations and the money diverted for the security zones. You can see a photo of one of the many costly concrete security zones below.

As if that wasn’t a big enough problem, yet another government department inspected the orphanage and indicated that, in spite of the fact that they have no disabled residents, have never had any disabled residents, and never plan to have any, they must install wheelchair ramps on every building (that would be about 10 buildings) and that they must include a bathroom stall suitable for wheelchair use, in each building, complete with grab bars etc. So the little money available to at least start the renovations has well and truly dried up leaving Casa 2 barely started and 15 children squashed in with the other 5 houses.

So there is a real urgency to get Casa 2 repaired and renovated to allow the 15 children to move back in.  There is also an urgency because if the work isn’t done quickly, and the government agencies aren’t satisfied that the orphanage meets the health & safety, as well as security requirements, then the permit for the orphanage is at risk of being revoked or their permitted capacity downgraded.  We do not want to see any of these children transferred to another orphanage because of a shortage of space due to inability to meet the deadline for completing these required renovations and satisfying the government ministries. Most of the 100 children have been at this orphanage all their lives. This is their home. Their family.

If you can help out please send us an urgent donation. We really need to get this finished asap. And please, share the link of this post on your FB and help spread the news! Thanks!