Guatemalan orphanage fire update

We are shocked and saddened to hear the recent news coming out of the largest government-run orphanage in Guatemala, Hogar Seguro. 

On Monday, March 6, youth and children in the orphanage staged a riot to protest ongoing sexual and physical abuse in the orphanage. A fire broke out Monday night and the early morning hours of Tuesday as a result of some of the kids setting fire to their mattresses. The majority of the victims were girls between the ages of 13 and 16 who were trapped in their living quarters. Some reports are that the girls were locked in a school on the property and responders were slow to react. When they did respond, the fire could not be extinguished in time to save their lives.

As of the morning of March 15, 40 are now confirmed dead according to the Prensa Libre, the largest newspaper in Guatemala. Thirty-eight others are in the hospital, most in critical condition. We understand that 150 children with special needs have been relocated to another government home.

Please pray for these kids who live in Hogar Seguro. We stand ready to assist in whatever way we are able to do so. At this time, the public hospitals where the victims are being treated are asking for basic supplies.

We have had children come to NLCH from that orphanage, especially recently. They bring horrifying reports of how they and the other children who live there are treated. Thank you for praying for us and the other private Homes in Guatemala who are providing a safe place for children to live and grow up. Thank you for standing with us!

From NLAI President Kendon Wheeler: This article from The New Yorker is the most complete report I have read to date on shedding light on what happened at Hogar Seguro. I have no way of being able to verify the facts, but even if half of this is true, it is deeply troubling.

New Life Children's Home

Orphaned, abandoned, and abused children have found a refuge and safe haven at New Life Children's Home in Villa Nueva, Guatemala. NLCH is truly a “home” where the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of children are addressed. 

Special attention is given to introducing them to Jesus Christ, nurturing and discipling them in a relationship with Him, and providing each child with a sound academic Christian education.

Since 1976, NLCH has been blessed with the opportunity to help turn children in crisis to children in Christ!

God is in his holy Temple.

He is a father to orphans.
He defends the widows.
God gives the lonely a home.
-Ps. 68:5-6a (Intl Children’s Bible)

Click here for an NLCH photo slideshow.


New Life Children's Home (NLCH) was established in Villa Nueva, Guatemala in 1976 by Dr. Fred Jarvis, the founding president of New Life Advance International (NLAI), formerly known as New Life League International. 

NLCH is a very special place where children are rescued from abuse, abandonment or abject poverty from some of Guatemala’s worst slums. At NLCH, each child receives 24-hour-a-day loving care, a Christian education and discipleship. Here, they experience the love and joy of Jesus Christ.