The Shoe Fairy in Puerto Vallarta

by Pauline Wallis

DSCN2278I remember the tooth fairy because I put a tooth under my pillow at night and the next morning, it was replaced with 25 cents.  I remember the tooth fairy because my children put a tooth under their pillow at night and the next morning, it was replaced with 1 dollar.  But I do not remember the shoe fairy—and there is a shoe fairy in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.

DSCN2283A family from Idaho vacations here for a week or two in February.  They stay at a hotel on the beach Continue reading “The Shoe Fairy in Puerto Vallarta”

Making a Difference Doesn’t Depend on Age

Micaela–Pays It Forward

DSCN3521Micaela spends a week or two in Puerto Vallarta each year in February.  She is currently 15 and several years ago asked to visit the Refugio because she was adopted and felt that she could relate to the children living in the shelter as their biological families were also unable to care for them in a safe, secure, nurturing way.

She felt so connected to the children that upon returning to Idaho, this amazing young woman decided to become a shoe fairy.  During the school year, she undertakes various fund raising activities such as bake sales to generate the funds to buy the children shoes.  Not only does the child receive shoes, but he or she gets to go to the store to purchase them and to have an ice cream treat afterward.  It is a wonderful, special day supported by a 15-year old girl from Idaho.

DSCN3499When Micaela visits in February she also brings items she notices are needed.  Sometimes, it is toothbrushes.  Other times, it has been socks or underwear.  Although Micaela’s overall goal is to reach $2000 and she is close to achieving it, she contributes on an ongoing basis, thereby providing not only shoes but supplies as they are needed.

It is remarkable that someone so young could recognize a need and make it her mission to fulfill it.  It is an example of how good can come from one person identifying with another while acknowledging her own good fortune.  It reminds us that there are no age limits to generosity of spirit and kindness to others.  We at the Children’s Shelter of Hope Foundation applaud Micaela.

We also welcome others to become involved, as Micaela has, by joining us on Facebook, contacting us to visit or volunteer while in Puerto Vallarta, or by checking our “Current Needs” list at the end of each newsletter and finding ways to contribute some of these items.

Making a Difference


Micaela Hurtuk is 14 years old from Boise, Idaho.  She attends the Sage International Middle School, but visits Macala with Madre Mari 2Puerto Vallarta in February each year.  Over the last three years, this very special young woman has visited RISE and dedicated her efforts to helping the children.  She explains it as follows:

“At four months my parents adopted me because my birth mom couldn’t take care of me and knew that my parents would.  I’m so glad that my birth  mom picked my parents and sisters to adopt me.  Otherwise, I would have been in a foster home or shelter like the children at RISE.  This is the reason why I love to help the children.  It is my way of “paying it forward” and I hope that someday one of the children at RISE will be able to “pay it forward too.”

Micaela brings donations each year.  She saves from birthdays, Christmas and allowance money, and asks friends to help.  She has brought dental products, pajamas, Micala with Madre Lety 2underwear and socks in addition to $800 in cash.  Her school helps raise money with bake sales.

Her visit to RISE this past February enabled her to spend time with the babies in the nursery as well as with older children and the Madres who care for all the children.  Micaela was particularly drawn to the one-month old baby as she held and fed him.  She said that she felt sad that she could not give all the attention the children needed.  But Micaela has thought of something she can do.  She said,

“One thing I wish is if 100 people donated $20 each to the “shoe fairy,” next year when I go to RISE I will be able to bring $2000 to pay for 100 pairs of shoes.  This would be my dream come true.  I will be helping my dream come true for 2014 by raffling some photos I took while in Mexico these past three years.”

Micaela took these photos.  To donate, mention Micaela’s Dream for 2013-2014 when sending your donation to Children’s Shelter of Hope Foundation.