One Friday morning, my wife, Conchita and I along with Eileen O’Leary had the opportunity to visit Pasito De Luz, which is the childcare center in the Pittial area, located Exiquio Corona 545 Col. Bobadilla.
We arrived early, and we played with the children as best one can, as many more started to arrive. In no time at all, all four of the little rooms were overflowing with these challenged children ready for their breakfast. One little one, who I thought to be about two, already had her stomach attached to her feeding tube. I found out later that she is 5 years old. In spite of all of their challenges, they are a very happy group of children.
Our mission this morning was more than just to visit Yolanda and the children. Eileen O’Leary’s Theatre
On The Bay, has just completed a season of three plays at the NH Krystal, and had two special benefit performances which all the proceeds were earmarked to go to Pasitos De Luz.
We were here now to deliver that check. Looking around at the needs, I could see that they could easily use ten times what we were able to raise, but I know that there are many others out there that are helping this worthy cause.
But Yolanda needs much more than just money, she needs people who care to come and to visit and show these children love.
Even if you don’t have money to give, surely you can spare a little love for these children.
In 2011 Yolanda met Peter and Teena Oudman, who are also known as Casa Connor, at Villa de Palmar Flamingos. It was Robert Kistner, Vice President of the Villas Group that introduced them. Robert’s wife, Ana Kistner, donated two and a half acres of her land to this project.
They felt that it was a perfect match; Pasitos de Luz and Casa Connor. Peter and Teena had a grandson who had Hunters Syndrome (MPS II) and died from this disease at 15 years of age. Losing their grandson Connor changed their whole lives.
They dedicated themselves to help other children who suffered from disabilities by raising the funds necessary to do so
Pasitos de Luz supports more than 140 children in total but can only support a small number on any given day due to the size of their current building. CASA Connor is now in partnership with Pasitos de Luz to assist in building a larger facility to accommodate their high demand.
Every year they have a Fiesta in Calgary to raise funds for this building project
Construction for the new Casa Connor facility for Pasitos de Luz began in November 2011.
This 15,000 square foot facility, built to look like a Disneyland castle, will house multiple therapy and education centers, a therapy pool, respite rooms and a large kitchen to provide meals. It will be able to accommodate over 200 children daily.
The project is about 50% percent completed but construction had to be put on hold in the summer of 2014 due to lack of funds.
There have been fundraisers and one important one is coming up here in PV by Eagles Wings Foundation, the charity group of the Universal Vacation Club.
Also there will be 2 fundraisers this fall in Alberta, Canada, supported by the owner of Bacha’s restaurant here in the Marina Vallarta. We hope to raise enough money to be able to start construction again and to continue until it is completed far enough so we can start using it. It is Yolanda Sanchez’s (Founder and Director of Pasitos de Luz) dream to create this extensive facility to provide loving care the children at Pasitos need to enrich their lives.
It is only through the dedication of our volunteers and the generosity of the people in our communities that we can make a difference in the lives of those less fortunate. We look forward to working with you to achieve this goal.
Non-Profit and Charitable Organizations
For visitors to Puerto Vallarta who wish to support the less privileged in our paradise, this is a list of some of the many organizations that could benefit from such kind gestures. If you would like your organization recognized here, please email details to email@example.com.
Acción En La Cruz: aid residents of La Cruz de Huanacaxtle by providing provisions in exchange for community services performed. www.landon5120.wix.com/accionenlacruz
Alcoholics Anonymous: In English Puerto Vallarta Alanon Club – Basilio Badillo 329 www.recoverpv.com
Amazing Grace Missions
Assisting families in Majisterio & Progreso with necessities and job training and English. Children’s programs also. Tax-deductible in USA & Canada. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org
American Legion Post 14: raises resources and manpower to improve facilities needing building maintenance www.americanlegion14.org
Asilo San Juan Diego Home for the Elderly – Contact: Lupita Sanchez Covarrubias 222-1257 or email@example.com or www.mexonline.com\asilosanjuandiego.htm
Asociación Down – Assistance to persons with Down’s Syndrome – Contact: Ana Catalina Eisenring at 224-9577.
Banderas Bay Women’s Shelter – Safe shelter for women & children victims of domestic violence.
Becas Vallarta, A.C. – Provides scholarships to high school and university students. Tax-deductible in Mexico and USA. Polly Vicars at (322) 223-1371 or Buri Gray at (322) 221-5285. www.puerto-vallarta.com/amf
Bucerias Bilingual Community Center: Supporting families, seniors in Bucerias. www.buceriasbilingualcommunitycenter.org
Casa Hogar – A shelter for orphaned, abandoned, disadvantaged or vulnerable children. Luz Aurora Arredondo at 221-1908, Rita Millan (322) 141-6974. firstname.lastname@example.org
Centro Comunitario SETAC-GLBT – Services the GLBT community, including treatment and referrals, education, English classes, HIV testing and counseling. Paco Arjona 224-1974 or email@example.com
Clinica de Rehabilitación Santa Barbara – Rehabilitation of the handicapped. Contact: Laura Lopez Portillo Rodriguez at 224-2754.
COLINA Spay and Neuter Clinic – Free and by-donation sterilization clinic in Old Town. Only open Sundays, Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or 322-104-6609
CompassionNet Impact – Transforming the lives of people living in chronic poverty. Job creation, education, emergency food, medicine & clothing. Tax-deductible. Cell: (322) 133-7263 or email@example.com
Corazon de Nina – A safe, loving, home-environment for 20+ girls rescued from high-risk situations. Donations & volunteers always welcome! Totally self-funded. www.corazondenina.mx
Cruz Roja (Red Cross) – Handles hospital and emergency service in Vallarta. It is the only facility that is authorized to offer assistance to injured people on the street. Contact: 222-1533, 222-4973
Desayunos para los Niños de Vallarta A.C. Feeding programs, education programs, day care centers for single mothers. 22 343 11 or 22 225 72 FB/desayunosninosvallarta
Discapacitados de Vallarta, A.C. (DIVAC) association of handicapped individuals dedicated to helping one another. Ivan Applegate at 221-5153.
Families At The Dump: Supporting families living in the landfill or garbage dump thru education and sustainable opportunities. www.familiesatthedump.org or 297-7425
Fundacion Punta de Mita
LDG. Ana Lilia Medina Varas de Valdés. firstname.lastname@example.org Tel. (329) 291 5053 www.fundacionpuntademita.org
Friends of PV Animals Volunteers working to enhance the lives of shelter animals. For info and donations visit friendsofpvanimals.com
Grupo Ecológico de Puerto Vallarta: Arq. Luz del Carmen Pérez Alvarez email@example.com grupoecologico.com
Horizonte de Paz: Shelter for men of all ages who are troubled with alcohol & drug addiction. Donato Schimizzi: 322 199 9523
La Brigada de la Basur:a A weekly meeting of neighborhood children to clean Vallarta Streets. Contact Que?Pasa 223-4006
Mexico Ministries & Mission, Inc. raises funds to the poor in Vallarta. Contact Fr. Jack+ 044 322 229-1129 christchurchbythesea.org
Navy League – assists in the transportation of donated medical supplies from the U.S., organizes work groups to paint and repair facilities, and operates the local Toys for Tots program. www.vallartanavyleague.org.
New Life Mexico – Challenging Child Poverty with health and education programs. Philippa Vernon firstname.lastname@example.org
Paraíso Felino AC Refuge and Adoption Centre for cats and kittens in the Bay of Banderas. Luis Donaldo Cel. (322) 120-4092
Pasitos de Luz – substitute home for low income children with any type of handicap, offers rehabilitation services and special support to their families. 299-4146. pasitosdeluz.org
PEACEAnimals – Free mobile spay/neuter clinic operating 48 weeks a year, primarily in Puerto Vallarta. Tax-deductible. peaceanimals.org
Pro Biblioteca de Vallarta – Raises funds for Los Mangos Public Library. Tax-deductible Ricardo Murrieta at 224-9966
Proyecto Pitillal, “Busca un Amigo” – Association created by underprivileged mothers of paralyzed children. Contact: 299-4495.
Puerto Vallarta Garden Club: Beautify and protecting the environment. vallartagardenclub.com
PuRR Project – A no-kill cat shelter, a natural un-caged environment. www.purrproject.com
Refugio Infantil Santa Esperanza- Shelter for Children. Tax-deductible. ccshf.ca
Roma’s Kids – Educate the children of the Volcanes and surrounding area: Math, English and computer programs a priority. 100% goes to the kids. kids.romamexico.com
The International Friendship Club (IFC) – Supports the Cleft Palate Surgery Program & families in need. 322-222-5466. ifcvallarta.com. email@example.com.