Here are several ways you can make a difference while in Aruba. My family has donated and delivered items to the below orphanages while on vacation. My kids were also able to play with the children while we were there. The children are very well cared for and there are many dedicated staff members. I also posted this info. in "Family Vacations".
For some reason, I was not able to include the direct email addresses for the contacts below. Feel free to contact me if you would like them.
Here is the contact information for several opportunities to help while visiting Aruba. Part 2 to follow...
There are 3 "orphanages" on the island. Casa Cuna is for ages 0-8 (currently have 2 babies), Imeldahoff is for 8- teen, and one other is for older teens. Children are placed there by the state because they cannot live at home anymore (physical or sexual abuse or drug use by parents). These facilities work with the parents as well in the hopes that the children can return to their homes.
Imeldahoff (we visited last summer) and Casa Cuna were spotless, spacious and well staffed by people with very big hearts. Casa Cuna has a nice playground and a pool. Imeldahoff has a playground and a small gymnasium. Many of the children go with foster parents on the weekend for a sense of normalcy. They also participate in field trips and community activities. Casa Cuna is near the airport (about 15 min. from Palm Beach) and Imeldahoff is close to Palm Beach. They are happy for donations - monetary or toys/supplies (diapers, etc.) and visitors. If you write to them, they can tell you what is needed.
We delivered toys to Casa Cuna a few days ago but were unable to see the kids because they were napping. So, make sure to ask what their nap schedule is before you go. We spent time with Corina and she shared a lot of information with us. She is amazing!
We have seen 3 toys stores on the island- Top1Toys is on the main road - L G Smith Blvd -right side headed to the resorts and is VERY expensive. Their toys are high quality and they gave us a 10% discount. We then saw Toys4Us (not ToysRUs) in downtown Oranjestad and a large sign on LG Smith Blvd. for another toy store near the Hong King grocery store.
Corina Linssen ,Directeur
Fax: 00297- 5853010