As part of the graduation modality Ejercicio Práctico Supervisado – Supervised Practical Exercise – Nuestro Pequeños Hermanos provides pathways to conduct the activities in different areas. One of them being is Psychology, where this year, Dulce Tubac and Kiara Morales unite to complete their closing assignment for their Bachelor of Psychology from the University of San Carlos de Guatemala.
Given the social demand for inequality problems within the community, workshops were started that provide spaces for socialization, learning and provide tools to be applied in daily life. The recent topics taught included emotional intelligence and coping with stress. Among the prevention programs developed by psychologists is Chicas Poderosas (Powerful Girls): a program only for girls. Currently, there are 15 girls enrolled, giving them the opportunity to talk about their problems or questions and the issues that are important to girls and young women of every age. Each section has a schedule to come to the workshop and do activities for a topic. Topics include:
- respect for others and for themselves
- expressing our opinions and feelings
- body image
- courtship and relationships
- creating a biography
- goals for the futures
- making decisions and more.
Participants take part in a mixture of methods, so they can learn and do creative, sporting and theoretical activities and can observe how their abilities grow. In addition, there is a library in the Chicas Poderosas room where the girls can borrow books. Thus they have the opportunity to read and improve their imagination and their education. Also, the Chicas Poderosas program provides a safe place where girls can come and talk to the manager when necessary. Chicas Poderosas is a program that strengthens self-esteem, self-understanding, confidence, and ambition in the young women of NPH Guatemala. We want to give them the opportunity and tools to increase their independence and prepare them for a life outside of NPH.
The Risk Prevention Program focuses on adult behaviors in which issues of relevance for the integral development of the youth of NPH Guatemala are discussed, from self-esteem to strategies to cope with stress and emotional intelligence. Constant psychoeducation is provided, as well as sexual education to help adolescents and youths to understand more about relationships and interactions with others.
The Vocational Orientation Program at NPH Guatemala supports interns and scholarship students. They receive talks and workshops in relation to the existing high school careers in Guatemala to which they can choose to study, as well as competent information is provided to Educational and Learning Psychology and first-hand information from professionals who dedicate themselves and practice various careers. Subsequently, the aptitudes and interests of the young people are evaluated, the results of these evaluations are analyzed and conclusions are provided regarding the best options they could choose to prevent disappointments and dropping out of school.
Proactivity and innovation are very important for the psychologists. Part of the time is also dedicated to creating a program with the intention of promoting physical and psychological well-being for the population at NPH Guatemala using techniques, methods and activities of complementary disciplines such as music therapy and psychodrama in therapeutic groups. This same program has a preventive nature for some psychopathologies including some neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s, among others.
It is worth mentioning that, apart from being in charge of said attributions, individual psychological care is also provided to young people of legal age residing at Casa San Andrés and Casa San Bernardo, as well as support is provided in various areas in which it was required. Such is the case of the Comprehensive Learning Technical Workshop – TTAI, in which various activities are carried out within the occupational therapy branch with all the homes of the foundation.
“The NPH Guatemala foundation for me is a free space to love and be loved. You give your best without expecting anything in return, but receiving gratitude and love is totally unavoidable. After graduating, I want to continue my studies in the field of Neuropsychology, I want to perfect the methodology I use and continue training as a music therapist,” says Kiara Morales.
“NPH Guatemala has been an opportunity for personal and academic growth, an opportunity to meet a diversity of people from Guatemala and other countries, establish ties of friendship and active support. It is a home and all people strive to be a family. After graduating, I will continue my master’s studies at the national or international level, within the topics that I am passionate about and interested in are: affirmative psychology, clinical psychology, sexual and gender diversity, sexology, feminism, accompaniment of survivors of violence, education comprehensive in sexuality,” says Dulce Tubac.
NPH is committed to the promotion and implementation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals through our programs. Through our Chicas Poderosas program, we strive to achieve SDG 4 Quality Education and SDG 5 Gender Equality, to support girls and young women in the countries that we serve.