Nuestros Pequenos Hermanos
Overview and mission
NPH is currently raising more than 3,400 boys and girls. An additional 1,600 students, who live outside the homes, receive scholarships, meals and healthcare.
“iLEAP Fellows return home to lead their communities with a renewed clarity and commitment to who they are, what they do, and how together they can change the world.“
Chuck Allworth, Midwest Region Director, NPH USA
Since 2012 GPD has committed $776,000 to support a range of leadership development initiatives that target Pequeños in their critical late-teen/early adult years. These programs seek to complement NPH’s other basic services by building the skills and providing the experiences that youth need to break the cycle of poverty and reach their full potential in life after NPH.
Our grants support international leadership workshops that bring together NPH students from the nine NPH countries, exposes them to new ideas and world-class leaders and encourages them to develop leadership skills through experiential learning.
The capstone of the programs is the Seattle International Leadership Institute. Launched as a pilot in 2011, the Institute brings college-age NPH youth to Seattle to attend classes at a local community college, live with host families and participate in a variety of coordinated skill-building activities.
Given the demonstrated success of the Seattle program, in 2015 we challenged the local NPH supporters to assume funding of the Seattle Leadership Institute. This allowed us to shift our funding toward the iLEAP Fellowship Program, a rigorous, four-week program that enrolls youth from around the world. iLEAP incorporates personal reflection, group learning, professional development, communication and effective leadership training. Our first class of eight NPH youth completed iLEAP in July 2015.
Building collaborations across grantees is critical to our ethos of adding value to our partner organizations. GPD facilitated an innovative partnership with the Deer Valley YMCA and other YMCA camps in western Pennsylvania where NPH youth serve as YMCA summer camp counselors while rising YMCA leaders volunteer in an NPH home in the spring. This exchange imbues a spirit of service in the young YMCA teens and is a transformational learning experience for the Pequeños. To date we have sponsored and inspired 26 Rising Leaders from the YMCA and six young leaders from NPH to see the world in a different and better way.
Impact to Date
From 2012 to 2015 our program has graduated twenty-three Pequeños from the Seattle Institute, eight NPH Leaders from the iLEAP program, six NPH Leaders through the YMCA collaboration, and engaged over twenty-five YMCA Rising Leaders in the NPH homes. We have conducted multiple leader seminars and begun to develop future leaders for the NPH organization. We are tracking these youth to assess impact. Initial results with respect to achieving employment, avoiding poverty and developing leaders with NPH and the YMCA are encouraging.
In coming years, NPH plans to create and grow partnerships with organizations that can provide more opportunities for young people to develop the skills and confidence they will need to live independently. NPH will seek to build on the momentum from GPD support to grow its base of funders interested in youth development and leadership programs in order to serve more youth and broaden the range of experiences.
“NPH was the DeBlasio Family charity. For years we participated in the Padrino program, which involves supporting a Pequeño at one of the homes through financial contributions and writing letters. When I established the GPD Charitable Trust, it was natural for me to look at programs that would support NPH. I was inspired by Donna Egge’s vision to develop the full potential of the children leaving the homes as well as to drive change within NPH through professional development.”
John DeBlasio - Founder of GPD Charitable Trust