Making Every Moment Matter™ - Responsive Management gives back with visit to Mexican orphanage

A girl smiles and in the background are other girls and some nunsBlessed, exhausted, thankful, sad, grateful, humble, motivated... Just a few of the adjectives used to describe the emotions felt by the Responsive Management Inc. team following their experience at San Jose de la Immaculate orphanage in Cancun, Mexico.

In May of 2017 a group of senior leaders from Responsive Management Inc. (RMI) traveled to Mexico, for their annual Leadership Conference. They participated in education sessions, leadership and team-building activities, as well as donated their time, energy and enthusiasm to San Jose de la Immaculate. Their work included assisting with repairs, refreshing the buildings and grounds, and providing supplies and necessities to the girls and nuns who permanently reside at the orphanage.

This philanthropic initiative was organized as part of RMI’s ongoing commitment to Making Every Moment Matter™ by fostering potential, growing people and supporting communities in need. In previous years the team has assisted with schools in Puerto Morales, Mexico, helping with repairs, painting, gardening and providing much-needed classroom furniture and supplies.

The RMI team became aware of the orphanage through a local contact in Mexico. San Jose de la Immaculate was founded in 1997 by three missionary nuns. Through donations, the nuns secured a piece of land and within a few years were ready to open their door to girls in need of protection from abusive homes where parents are involved in drugs, prostitution, or were incarcerated. Their mission is to promote the well-being of the girls by teaching the values of life along with the faith of Christian formation which helps to recover their dignity and mental motivation; their vision is to defend and protect little girls innocence at all times from any predators that could hurt them physically or mentally; and their values are to promote the love of god, respect, justice, human rights and protect their innocence at all cost. The girls live there until they are 18 years old, at which time they complete a program to integrate them into society.

A girl gets her teeth cleaned by a local dentistThe RMI team got to work raising funds, donating personally as well as collecting donations from their family and friends. The donations were then matched through the Rykka Care Centres/Responsive operating company, and a further amount of funding was provided through an RMI supplier. Thanks to everyone's support, more than $19,000 was raised to support the orphanage.

Ahead of the conference the collected funds were used to support major repairs including a roof repair and a complete tear-down and rebuild of the playground area.

An opportunity was also provided for each of the girls and the nuns to visit the dentist, which for some was their first experience. Everyone attended an assessment appointment in early April followed by additional appointments to complete the work ranging from fillings and fluoride to cleaning and root canals.

Two new computers and monitors were purchased for their classrooms, along with everyday supplies, and a personal package was assembled for everyone containing toiletries, hair accessories, perfume, lotion, and the A girl holds up her Pandora charm bracelet which was received as a giftmuch-loved Canadian flag! Then as a keepsake and a reminder that there is still kindness in their little worlds, everyone was given a Pandora bangle with a ceramic Canadian heart flag charm, as well as an additional cross charm for the nuns.

On site the team was able to assist with exterior painting, furniture repairs and staining. The group was not deterred by the 30+ degree weather and blazing hot sun. As soon as they arrived, they were given a quick tour of the grounds and got to work! The team divided up; a group went to repair and stain outdoor furniture, others split into smaller groups and divided up the various colours of paint for the exterior walls of the buildings. They were given brushes, rollers, poles - the whole nine yards. Some worked on the ground, some climbing through and over bushes, others on ladders, and some brave painter even went onto the roof! A few of the girls wanted to help, and ended up wearing more paint than they applied! Others were happy to play, enjoying time on their new playground, time with dolls and Play-Doh. Some had their hair braided, and others received a big treat and had their nails painted!

Following the physical work, the RMI team was invited to share in a homemade lunch with the girls and nuns. The food they prepared is also sold at the local market and provides sustainable income for the orphanage. This facility, as with many others, does not receive any government funding and survives through daily food sales and private donations.

As the time at San Jose de la Immaculate came to an end, there were many tears, hugs, and thank-yous. As exhausted as everyone felt, there was an overwhelming desire to stay, to keep helping. There was also a sense of peace, as seeing is believing - San Jose de la Immaculate is not simply an orphanage, it is a home. A place where the girls are well looked after, clean, educated, protected, and loved.

A big group shot, including kids, nuns and RMI staff

The Responsive Management Inc. team looks forward to further opportunities to share and promote its philanthropic work and upholding their commitment to Making Every Moment Matter™.