(Center for Care of Children with Other Capabilities)
Mission: Providing physical, language, speech, nutrition, and communication therapy.
Number Served: Children ranging from 3 to 23 years of age.
Director: Father Jaime Hagan
Location: Fracc. Tecolote, San Antonio de los Buenos, Tijuana, BC, Mexico
SHI Partnership Began: 2007
Project Overview: C.A.N.O.A. is a project initiated in 2004 by Father James Hagan and the local community, and stands for Centro de Atencion a Niños de Otros Aptitudes. The Center was created because Father Hagan new that “healthcare for the poor in Mexico is often unobtainable” and C.A.N.O.A. would fill that void by providing medical assistance, counseling, recreational and education service programs for severely handicapped children and youth.
With the help of SHI, and other NGO’s, C.A.N.O.A. has constructed an assembly hall and a diagnostic and therapy center in the southern hills of Tijuana for special needs children afflicted with cerebral palsy, mental retardation and other disabling conditions. Services provided emphasize on physical, psychological, communication, nutritional and occupational therapies. Both children and parents learn basic skills that help them develop their potential and lead to their optimum levels of independence. The center is staffed by volunteers and experienced, and dedicated, professionals in the fields of medicine, physical therapy and psychology. Center volunteer groups serving the needy in Mexico include Centro Juvenil, De Colores Foundation and MANO.
Of Note: According to a recent article in Baja Times, an English newspaper of Baja California news and events, the facility is still struggling financially but will continue to welcome children in need as well as volunteers. “Padre Jaime invites anyone to…volunteer their time. People who come here get to interact with our wonderful people and our children. We never throw in the towel for any of our children. It is an encouraging and uplifting experience.”
Current Needs: The center opens each day “from prayers and goodness of people.” Although money is always a concern, electricity is their main necessity right now. Volunteers are also always welcomed, and needed, to keep the program afloat. Right now the program is in need of a volunteer bus driver as well as others to help work with the clients.