Casa Verde – more than a home – a perspective
When 13-year-old Candelaria is standing before you, her jaunty cheerfulness seeming to pervade the whole house, you can hardly imagine that only a few weeks before she had been living under almost unbearable conditions characterized by poverty and violence beyond description.
Candelaria is one of the more than 30 children and teenagers who have found shelter, perspective and a new home in CASA VERDE, a children's home in the South-Peruvian city of Arequipa.
More than 15 years ago CASA VERDE was founded by German Volker Nack and his Peruvian wife Dessy and has since been shelter and home for children and teenagers left by their parents or exposed to various forms of physical, psychic or sexual violence. They are living at CASA VERDE in family-like conditions that give them the necessary protection, care and affection that had been lacking in their families. This includes enhancement of their talent and thus the opportunity to attend school and later start an apprenticeship. Most children furthermore are in need of intensive psychological care so that they can cope with their previous traumatic experiences.
Around the clock the children, in two houses, are thus cared for by trained personel from the fields of social work, psychology, medicine and pedagogy.
In addition to that there is cooperation with the children's families in order to facilitate possible re-integration into their families of origin. Quite a few of the children could be successfully re-integrated, while others remain at CASA VERDE until they are of age.