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Mireya's Hope for Honduran Children
by Ronne Rock
Posted on Tuesday, March 01, 2016

"We have started with nurture group training at San José!"

Her excitement is palpable. For Mireya Sevilla, the Orphan Outreach Program Coordinator for Honduras, teaching the staff at the orphanage in La Paz is an answer to prayer for her country and its children.

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"For me it is a prayer answered, since the need for trauma informed care is so essential to the children’s welfare. It is a great blessing to see a team of God-loving ladies come along side Edith to help care for the children. Even though these women are willing to help, they lack the right training to care for children who have gone through trauma in different levels and areas. Understanding the children we are serving is of the foremost importance. Having trained staff to help guide the children by re-directing their energy and channel their behavior from inappropriate to appropriate and positive can be achieved if everybody that has direct contact with them brings consistency to their care."

Mireya's passion to provide complete care for orphaned and vulnerable children is powerful. Before joining the Orphan Outreach team, she led programs for a ministry in Tegucigalpa, managing activities at a children's home, a feeding center, a single mom's program and a preschool. "One morning, Mike Douris and Austin South came into my office to meet me and ask how they could be involved to help the children we served in these programs. I gave them all the information I could, and a few months later, we met again to talk more. Unfortunately, I needed to leave the organization because long-term changes were not being made to improve the quality of care for the children. I was heartbroken, but I relied fully on God to guide me and to direct me in my work. I feel it was Him allowing me to have peace when I left the organization."

A few months later, Mireya again heard from Orphan Outreach. This time, it was to seek her assistance in finalizing the NGO status in Honduras. She then received another call - this time to meet with Mike Douris about the possibility of joining the Orphan Outreach staff.

"In October of 2013 I met with them, but before I met with them I prayed and asked God to go before me. My meeting was very good, after hearing what they did not only in Honduras but also abroad, I felt that I could walk with them alongside, and that God was foremost in this work relationship, sorting all things, especially my desire to serve Him through the service to His children, with the help and support of OO, and above all with His presence!

"Two cannot walk together if they are not in agreement, and I feel that I am in agreement with OO and so far they agree with me, the most important part of this relationship is our common knowledge that without God we do nothing, have nothing and know nothing. All the staff from OO have one thing in common, they are humble and love God with all their hearts, and want to please Him."

Mireya now works with all the mission teams working in Honduras, acts as translator for the many sponsor letters sent by families and the children they support, and helps with day-to-day operations of the Orphan Outreach ministry partners. And pioneering trauma-informed care at San Jose has proven to be her great joy and challenge.

"There are many well-meaning organizations that see the need, and without the correct experience, education and focus, they try to help children and families without knowing how to do it correctly. The result is sometimes not the best for the children who end up caught up in a vicious circle, repeating the mistakes their parents did. And there are other organizations that see child care as an opportunity to make a living out of the misfortune of the children and their families. Unfortunately, governments are many times also at fault for not making it a priority to care and make sure that our children are well care for."

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Mireya believes that, by sharing resources, especially in training and advocacy about best practices for childcare - both governmental agencies and ministry organizations will benefit. "I am confident that there will be many great improvements in the children’s lives through these nurture groups because we will be able to allow them to learn and understand that they are loved and will gain an even greater sense of security in the home.

"My desire for the children we serve in Honduras, is that they get to have a strong relationship with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, that they live healthy lives, not only physically, but emotionally and spiritually, and that they break the cycle of orphanhood by becoming good parents to their children and productive and well-rounded adults."

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