The Refugio Infantil Photo Gallery
By Laird Knight and Barbara Walker
12/3/04
Enter Here Next

In planning our recent trip to Mexico, Barbara read an article about how we don't always use the power that we have. Hmmm, she thought, here we are flying to Mexico, let's do something charitable with this. She found several web sites for various charities in and around Puerto Vallarta. The Refugio Infantil is a shelter for children where they can get the care they need. It is the primary recipient of children from the state court system but what they receive from the state government falls well short of their budget.

We both called and e-mailed our friends and family to make contributions that we could carry with us on our trip. Barbara's sister and mother also brought donations from their home towns. Thanks to everyone who contributed!

The new facility houses kids from infancy to teenage. Currently they have capacity for 30 kids. When their new facility is complete they will have doubled that capacity. It was pleasing to see how well cared for all of the children were. The staff are all hard-working and deeply caring people. It was also pleasing to meet other Americans there who have discovered this place and are supporting it financially and with their own vacation time, some even staying for three weeks at a time.

To me, of all the photos we took, the one of Hector, this young boy below, sums up the important role that such a facility plays. The vast majority of the children were animated and responsive, as children typically are. Hector was distant and withdrawn, you can see it in his eyes. It was rare that I could even get him to look directly at me or respond verbally at all. I'm not sure what sort of past Hector has endured but at Refugio Infantil, I'm confident that his future will be much kinder.

 

Check out the photo gallery