Stansberry's Children's Home

Stansberry's Children’s Home has been a refuge for orphaned and abandoned children since 1954. It is located on 7 acres of land (almost a square city block) in Santa Cruz, Bolivia. The city of Santa Cruz has a population of well over a million people and is growing rapidly. Originally the home was a small farm surrounded by tropical forrest and over time the city has closed in around it. There are still many remnants of the original farm including large native trees, a fruit orchard, a small pasture for the several milk cows, and vegetables gardens. The large grounds provides plenty of space to play including on the playgrounds and soccer fields. An oasis in the middle of a bustling city, Stansberry's Children's Home, works to provide a healing envronment and exeptional care for the many children who will grow to adulthood in our home.

How we work

The Christian faith is central to our ministry and we strive to provide a Christian family atmosphere where the children can grow and mature. Stanberry usually has about 30 children at one time calling this home. Until 2007 the children lived in two dormitories, one for girls and one for boys, with house parents and various volunteers taking care of the children. In 2006 we began the transition to cottage style living and began the construction of three houses or “casitas” and in March 2007 the children moved into these houses where they live in family groups ranging from 10 -14 people per household. They eat together, clean house together, go to church together, and learn how families can function. This model means for less turnover in care givers so the children are able to bond and get to know their caregivers better and vice/versa. We try to keep sibling groups together so each house has boys and girls ranging from 1 year – 19 years old.
At noon the families go to the main kitchen at the daycare and get the food for their house which is prepared for them Monday to Friday as way to help them out, they eat together before the younger children go to school in the afternoons and the older ones go to the library program to do their homework and attend the workshops. Weekends and vacations afford time for more family bonding. There are also times when the larger Stansberry family does things together, monthly birthday parties, worship times, and soccer, basketball and other sports afford us special times together.

About the Children

The children at Stansberry often come to us after several years in other temporary children’s homes. Stansberry is considered a permanent home because the children can stay here until they finish their schooling. Many of our children are sibling groups who have lost one parent and the other has addiction problems, some were abandoned, taken in by non family members and abused, others have extended family members that would like to care for them but because of extreme poverty are unable to. We have had some cases of families being reunited and some children have gone to be adopted but for the majority of children who enter Stansberry this becomes their permanent home. In most cases the children are admitted into Stansberry when they are 7 years of age or under. All cases are reviewed by a Government Social Worker.

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