Whole Child congratulates our fourth class of Whole Child training program graduates! The ceremonies on January 17 celebrated the commitment and the hard work of 52 caregivers and members of technical teams of Nicaraguan orphanages who successfully completed our rigorous nine-month training program. These 52 join the 134 trainees who graduated this past October as they bring their new expertise directly into Managua’s children’s institutions.

The tables at the Intermezzo el Bosque Restaurant were decorated with festive centerpieces, and the speeches, diplomas, and donated graduate caps had been painstakingly coordinated. But the real glory of these ceremonies comes from the graduates themselves. The tears flowed freely as they were individually recognized for their work. Most have never earned a prior diploma (few have a high-school degree, and many are illiterate) and they are not accustomed to recognition for the challenging and sometimes thankless career they have chosen. So the graduates beamed with well-earned pride as the speeches and slideshows continuously reminded all in attendance of their dedication and devotion to the children in their care.

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Group 1 at Intermezzo el Bosque

The children are always the core of this work, but this ceremony is a great chance to shine a grateful light on the caregivers. These women and men have not only devoted their lives to taking care of some of the world’s least fortunate children, but also have put in extra hours to learn how to connect more deeply and ensure that they have the child development tools to give parentless children a chance to live healthy, constructive, loving lives. Their profession will never be financially rewarding, so the knowledge that their efforts will benefit these children throughout their lives is all the more precious.

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Group 2

As the caregivers carry their new knowledge back into the institutions, we all leave the ceremony with our hearts and our work fixed, more than ever, on the children in their care.