[Translate to ireland:] History Highlights

Chronology of Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos™

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1923
Fr. William B. Wasson was born in Phoenix, Arizona on December 21st.


1953
Fr. William is ordained in Cuernavaca, Mexico.1954
Fr. Wasson is given custody of a boy jailed for stealing from his church poor box because “he was hungry.” By year end, 32 boys are in his care and Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos (NPH, Spanish for "Our Little Brothers and Sisters") is founded.


1959
Girls join the NPH family.


1965
Friends of the Orphans (then Friends of Our Little Brothers) incorporates as one of Arizona’s first nonprofits.1969
Our Little Brothers and Sisters, Inc. is established in Virginia to raise funds for NPH.  It will subsequently establish fundraising offices in Europe as well as Canada.


1970
Casa San Salvador in Miacatlán, México, is acquired. Work begins to refurbish the old sugar plantation.


1977
Fr. Wasson receives the Mexican National Prize for his outstanding contribution to the children of Mexico. He was, at the time, the only U.S. citizen to have received the award.


1979
The National Catholic Development Conference gives Fr. Wasson the Good Samaritan Award.


1986
Fr. Wasson receives the Franciscan International Award.
Fr. Wasson opens an NPH home in Honduras.  


1988
A new NPH home opens in Haiti.


1990
Fr. Wasson is the first priest to receive the Order of the Aztec Eagle, Mexico's highest award, recognizing services performed for Mexico or humanity by persons of foreign nationality.


1994
Fr. Wasson establishes the fourth NPH home in Nicaragua. 1996
Guatemala is the site of the fifth NPH home.


1997
The Caring Institute of Washington, D.C. gives Fr. Wasson the National Caring Award.


1998
Fr. Wasson National receives KFC's Colonel's Way Award honoring amazing seniors and El Sol de Nuestra Comunidad Award presented by the Hispanic community of Phoenix, AZ.


1999
The sixth NPH home opens in war-torn El Salvador.


2000
Fr. Wasson receives Kellogg's Hannah Neil World of Children Award for his life work with orphaned children.  The $100,000 prize is given to individuals who make a world of difference in the world of children.


2003
Dominican Republic is the seventh NPH home.Fr. Wasson celebrates his Golden Jubilee as a priest and his 80th birthday.  Fr. Wasson receives the Jefferson Award for Public Service, which is recognized as the “Nobel Prize” for public service in America.  


2004
Peru becomes the first country in South America to have an NPH home.
At a ceremony in Germany on October 3, 2004, the International Erich Fromm Society honored Fr. Wasson with their annual award “in recognition of his work as founder of Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos, as spiritual father of the orphanages in Latin America and for his permanently lived example of his ‘Love of Life’ in the spirit of Erich Fromm."

Father Wasson travels to Italy with children from NPH Dominican Republic and meets Pope John Paul II. NPH celebrates its 50th anniversary.


2005
The ninth NPH home, located in Bolivia, opens.  Fr. Wasson wins the Ivy Humanitarian Prize, awarded by the Ivy Inter-American Foundation to "recognize individuals who have made extraordinary humanitarian contributions toward improving the lives of children and their communities in the Americas."  He received a $10,000 prize to support NPH on September 22, 2005, in Washington, D.C.

The Opus Prize Foundation gives Fr. Wasson a $100,000 prize at a ceremony at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on November 7, 2005, for making a significant difference in the lives of people who need help the most.


2006
Fr. Wasson dies on August 16 in Cottonwood, Arizona.  A funeral is held in Phoenix and memorial services are held at all of the NPH homes.
2009 Founded by John Shinsky, Ciudad de los Niños ("City of the Children") opens in Matamoros, Mexico, as a project of NPH International.


NPH History Media

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