Silver Hugs help the elderly in Honduras

Compassion, generosity and kindness are fundamental to human nature, and during difficult times, the value of human nature can be even greater.

Across the Laureate network, our students continue to contribute to their local communities in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, while sharing their compassion, generosity and kindness with those in need.

Eight students from UNITEC in Honduras have established a non-profit organization called Abrazos de Plata (Silver Hugs in English), to assist vulnerable elderly residents living in retirement homes that have insufficient resources.

The students aim to improve the quality of life and help prevent the retirement home residents from contracting illnesses caused by a lack of hygiene or malnutrition. They’ve called on locals to support their initiative, which collects donations of cleaning products, personal hygiene items, food and monetary contributions.

The organization comprises students from a range of study disciplines, from law to medicine, psychology and marketing. Led by Industrial and Business Administration student, Frances Arevalo, the group was established when the pandemic started unfolding in Honduras and the elderly were identified as being at highest risk from COVID-19.

“Solidarity is a human value that is fundamental at all times, and more so in times of crisis,” Frances said.

“Despite the difficulties the coronavirus has brought, it is motivating to see how many people have come together to help those who need it most; especially when they are young people who demonstrate their ability to empathize with the elderly who are the most vulnerable group to COVID-19.”

Abrazos de Plata intends to continue its work beyond the pandemic, and become a long-term project. While their motto is: ‘A grandfather is someone with silver in his hair and gold in his heart’, they plan to extend their services to the young. The group hopes to offer its support to children living with cerebral palsy.

We thank these students for sharing their great compassion, generosity and kindness with vulnerable people in their community, and for making an enduring impact.

The Abrazos de Plata team members are our Laureate Heroes.