At our Covenant House residences in Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, and Nicaragua*, we wrap each young person in unconditional love and absolute respect and surround them with a community that accepts them just as they are.
Our holistic care is trauma informed and guarantees the safety of every child and adolescent who comes to us, whether from situations of abuse, neglect, gender intolerance, trafficking, or the migrant trail.
Covenant House is committed to inclusion, and our staff and programs are informed by the True Colors Inclusion Assessment and certified by Praesidium. Given the stigma our LGBTQ+ youth experience, our commitment to them can be lifesaving. We receive all our young people without judgment and immediately seek to meet their needs.
First, we offer the basics — food, clothes, safe shelter. Many of our youth do not speak Spanish as a first language (25 languages are spoken across Guatemala alone). Our staff speak several languages and connect with expert partner organizations to ensure we can communicate with all our residents and make them feel welcome.
Our sites provide residents with physical and mental health care, including traditional talk therapy and art, music, recreational, and, in Mexico, horse therapies. In Guatemala, we also support young girls who come to us pregnant or with small children of their own. We provide specialized care in safe houses for trafficking survivors in Guatemala and Honduras, and for young migrants in Mexico.
Education is important to our young residents, and we help them catch up academically and stay in school. We also work with parents or relatives if we believe our youth can safely be reunited with their families and thrive.
Our vocational programs help our young people begin to think about and prepare for the future. Youth can learn such trades as cooking, baking, barbering, and fine tailoring, and nurture their entrepreneurial spirit. They can also prepare to continue on to higher education.
*In Nicaragua, we have suspended our services for youth as of June 2022 while we execute a new, stringent certification process mandated by the government for all non-profits receiving international funds. We continue to respond to government requests for information with the goal to reopen our residence and resume the transformative programs we have offered in Managua since 1998.