On December 10th, 2004, our first two children arrived at NPH Peru, marking the birth of NPH International's eighth home. Since then, the NPH Peru home has grown and moved two times. NPH Peru is currently home to 101 children from all over Peru. Our family comprises children from less than one year to nineteen years old, speaking languages as diverse as Quechua and Aguaruna. Our family, currently the smallest of all the NPH homes, is rapidly growing and developing under the careful attention of our loving and dedicated staff of employees and volunteers. The seventh anniversary, which took place just this past December, was the first (of many) on our new property in San Vicente de Cañete.
Thanks to the support of all our Friends, we are gradually realizing our dream of completing this permanent home on our land in Cañete that will ultimately include a clinic, administrative offices, therapy center, sports center, communal kitchen and dining room and several family style homes designed to accommodate 16 children and two caregivers each. Building work will continue into the future to complete the complex that could house up to 500 staff and children.
On December 9th, 2012, in the afternoon, we began the celebration with a performance by cheerleaders. The groups practiced all week, and while some were nervous, all ended up doing very impressive choreography. The groups arrived carrying the flags of nine different countries that they represented and cheering their own teams. Even our youngest children and babies were able to participate in the routines. The children built human pyramids, jumped and tumbled; they also chanted and cheered calling out NPH and Father Wasson, our founder. Italy was the winner, followed by Ghana and The Dominican Republic.
The next morning on December 10th, on the official anniversary, the same groups participated in a set of games which included bobbing for apples, an obstacle course, a clown ball-toss game, and lots of water. The games were organized by the youth group. The children got wet, muddy and exhausted and were happily smiling. The last game was the tug of war. After making a big puddle, the place was ready for everyone to get dirty and all the teams wanted to win. It was a hard competition because no one wanted to let go of the rope. After the competition we enjoyed a delicious meal with a great banana split for everyone for dessert. During the meal the children talked about the games, the falls, the difficulties and the good moments. After lunch the NPH Peru family enjoyed a special mass to give thanks for all these years and remembered our founder, who is always with us.
This anniversary gave everyone the opportunity to get out of the daily routine and enjoy the seven years of life in Peru and show how grateful we are to be in our new permanent home. These activities teach the children the importance of teamwork, help to develop beautiful bonds and give the children the opportunity to spend a fantastic day with their brothers and sisters.