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TitleAbout Pan American Health Service

DownWhat is PAHS?

PAHS stands for Pan American Health Service, Inc. a public non-profit organization, classified as 501 ( c ) ( 3 ) by the United States of America's Internal Revenue Service.

DownWhat does PAHS do?

PAHS makes health care and education available to some of the poorest people in Honduras, Central America, focusing especially on finding solutions to problems unique to those living in extreme poverty. We do this by rehabilitating malnourished children and by making available community vocational training and basic education for those seeking a path out of poverty.

DownWho founded PAHS?

A businessman from Dallas, Walter A. Tynes, observed the medical care given to destitute migrants -- camped along the Rio Grande River hoping for work on the other side -- by Dr. Stephen A. Youngberg and associates in their time off from their private medical practice. He returned to Dallas and had the incorporation papers drawn up for PAHS, so that he and others could receive tax benefits while finding more meaning in life by funding help for their neighbors.
Read More About Our History

DownWho operates the PAHS?

Co-founder Dr. Stephen Youngberg was program-director until his death in 2001. Dr. Youngberg's daughter, Aileen, is now program director; other members of the board of directors include Dr. Youngberg's widowed wife, Verlene, and his grandson, Stephen. Dr. Sheila Horsley, a Family Practice physician with a Master's in Public Health, and Dr. Gary Harding, a Pediatrician, retired from the Loma Linda University School of Public Health.

DownWhat denomination is PAHS?

PAHS is a Christian organization without denominational affiliation.

DownDoes PAHS operate a clinic or a hospital?

While the name Children's Nutrition Hospital has been the traditional name given to the facility where PAHS has cared for starving children since 1965, it is in reality a Nutritional Rehabilitation Center. Acutely ill children are transferred to the Honduran government's charity hospital Mario Catarino Rivas accompanied by one of PAHS caring staff members or a parent.
Our Center also operates an Outpatient Clinic for families living in poverty. This Clinic is where many of our patients are first seen to determine if they need to be admitted to the Nutritional Rehab.
Visit our Section about Outpatient Clinic

DownWhy is PAHS involved in so many projects?

The mission of PAHS is accomplished by a multifaceted approach which has grown out of the needs of the community served. Treating childhood hunger necessitates education as well.

DownWhy does PAHS have an office in Texas?

PAHS provides its donors with tax deductible receipts therefore donations are processed in the US for maximum security and reliability. The PAHS office in Texas serves as the donation processing center as well as communication hub between the organization and its supporters as well as the IRS.

DownDoes the Honduras Government help PAHS?

The Honduras Government does not provide any direct assistance to PAHS. However, the organization is recognized by the Ministry of Finance as a Humanitarian Organization and is allowed to bring to the country certain items tax free. Additionally the Vocational School occasionally receives a limited amount of funding from a government agency involved in providing professional training to the citizens of Honduras.

DownWhat is Honduras Children's Home, Inc.?

Honduras Children's Home (HCH) is a corporation which gives all of its profits after expenses and taxes to help fund PAHS. It is an entity that was formed in 1996 to hold the ownership of a direct marketing business which provides significant residual income as compensation for the word-of-mouth marketing of a variety of wellness products and services.

DownWhat is the relationship of HCH to PAHS?

HCH is a reliable monthly contributor to the operating funds of PAHS. It plays a very important role in the funding of the PAHS work.

DownHow can I become a partner with HCH?

HCH is seeking business minded individuals who have a serious interest in building a home based direct marketing business. You can request information about this opportunity by calling the PAHS office in Texas at 817-641-2646 or by emailing
TitlePAHS Programs

DownWhat populations are benefited by PAHS work?

PAHS serves these vulnerable populations: malnourished children, abandoned children, single mothers, poor adolescents & young adults & families and elderly unemployable people.

DownWhat programs are the main focuses at PAHS?

- Nutritional Rehabilitation
- Children's Home
- Vocational Education
- Traditional Education

DownHow many are being educated by PAHS?

Two hundred and seventy-nine (279) people are receiving an education thanks to support from PAHS donors.
There are 47 in primary school, 54 in high school, 8 in college, and 5 more who are seeking funding for continued education. Additionally, there are 170 students enrolled in our Vocational School who are from the community.

DownWhy is a "health service" interested in sponsoring education?

Education is the best way to help the people suffering the ravages of poverty to escape the vicious cycle they are in. A basic education goes a long way in preventing malnutrition in the first place. With an education people have improved opportunities to provide in better ways for their own children.

Education is a long-term solution to the goal of improved health in all facets of life for the people who are being served.
TitleAbout Our Children

DownHow many malnourished children are in the Nutritional Rehab Hospital?

For the last five years the average number of children in the nutritional rehabilitation center at any given time has been approximately 20. The number has varied from 12 to 40 little ones at a given time, ranging in ages from 2 months to 16 years of age; generally a child stays with us an average of 4 months.

DownHow many children are cared for on the campus?

Besides the temporary occupants of the nutritional rehabilitation program mentioned above, there are 60 more children in the homes on our campus, ranging in age from 5 to 25 years, most of these are former patients from the Nutritional Rehab Hospital that were abandoned.

DownCan I adopt a child?

No. The children in our care are entrusted to us by a parent or relative who remains the legal guardian

DownWhy is adoption in Honduras so difficult?

In Honduras, all adoptions are presided over by IHNFA, the government's department of Infancy and Family Matters. A prospective adoptive family must apply to them and take the child they provide. Adoption from birth parent to adoptive family is not available since any child to be adopted must be given to the government agency for the legal transaction. This is done to prevent the trading of children for money.

DownWhy does PAHS operate a Home for abandoned children?

In the early years of our Nutrition Hospital - the late 1960's - many children were being abandoned at the facility. At the same time the ill malnourished were still arriving and being rehabilitated. The mix of lively healthy children with the weak and recovering ill ones was difficult to manage. A Home was established for the rearing of the abandoned boys and girls.

DownWhy is it not called an "orphanage"?

Very few of the children in our care are true orphans (having two deceased parents). Many have simply been abandoned by their family. There have been cases where a child having grown up in our facility had a parent look them up decades later. Additionally the atmosphere on our campus is set up to simulate a family and our children are not considered to be "alone in the world". Furthermore, we believe that God is their ultimate heavenly Father.

DownWhen do children have to leave PAHS?

Children or adolescents are not required to leave at any set age. Their continued residence in our Homes is dependent upon their interest in study or work. Upon such time as they no longer are receiving an education, or they prefer to find a job elsewhere, then they can choose to leave the facility.
TitleHow You Can Help

DownHow can I help PAHS?

You can give of your time or funds to help with the work we are doing.

DownCan I donate a set amount of money monthly?

Yes you can. You can make a donation online at our website or you can advise your financial institution to send a set amount from your account to PAHS on a monthly basis. Most banks have a "bill paying" service that others have used to send regular contributions to PAHS

DownHow are my donations used?

Donations are allocated as needed for various program services. The expenses include: food, education, medicine, fuel, utilities and salaries to name a few.
Donations which are designated for a specific use are used as requested by the donor.

DownHow do I know that my donation goes where I have specified?

Upon request a donor can receive photos of the results of their donation.
Also, PAHS operates with an open-door policy and visitors are welcomed at our facility to see how their contributions are being put to use so that they may draw their own conclusion about the impact their contributions are making.

DownAre PAHS finances independently audited?

Yes. PAHS has voluntarily sought the services of independent auditors Weaver & Tidwell of Fort Worth, Texas and AUDYCONTAS of San Pedro Sula, Honduras. PAHS reports to the government of the United States of America on IRS form 990. Expenses are reported there and can be viewed by going online to

DownCan I sponsor a child?

Yes, you may sponsor a child's education through a PAHS partner organization called Mend-a-Child, Inc. also a 501 (c) (3) organization.

DownCan I donate equipment or tools?

Yes, equipment and tools can be donated.
Transportation of these items to Honduras can be accomplished by sending them to the PAHS office in Texas. These items will then be shipped on the next available shipment to our campus in Honduras.

DownWhat kind of equipment is needed?

The most needed is an electrical three-phase generator, also needed are industrial kitchen, bakery, construction, and water bottling equipment. A four-wheel drive diesel vehicle is needed for our rural health program and tools that can be used for general building maintenance and vehicle maintenance. For the Vocational school woodworking equipment and vehicle maintenance equipment is needed for students to learn and practice their new trade with. Please call to consult on specific needs and shipping instructions: 817-641-2646 or email

DownCan I volunteer my building skills?

Yes. PAHS is currently in a re-construction phase; therefore building skills are in high demand. Please note: An open mind is essential, and a reasonable knowledge of the local culture will be helpful to avoid frustration with the slower pace of the local laborers.

DownCan I donate materials of any kind?

Materials can be donated. Transportation from the US would be the same as detailed for equipment and tools. You may consider purchasing materials in Honduras. Please call 011-504-9991-0801 or email to coordinate.

DownIs there another way to help?

Your prayers are much needed and appreciated. Also, please tell others about the work PAHS is doing.

DownWhat are the greatest needs from an administrative standpoint?

The greatest needs include funds and knowledgeable workers who can implement great ideas and function competently in an ever-changing environment.

DownHow can I volunteer at PAHS?

You must submit a Volunteer application, which can be found on the Volunteer Page of the PAHS website.Submit completed application to or fax to 817-641-2646. Following application you will be contacted for an interview.

DownWhat can I do as a Volunteer?

Volunteers have helped with childcare, group activities for older children, music lessons, English classes, after-school tutoring, medical care, construction, maintenance, organic gardening, water supply, consulting and business development.

DownWhat should I expect about being in Honduras?

-You can expect friendly and laid-back locals.
-There can be very loose definitions of what is mine, yours and ours.
-You should expect that your ability to be FLEXIBLE will save your sanity in the long run.
-You can expect that the work will be very challenging.
-It will be lonely at times and you will get homesick.
-Expect that the transition will take at least one month and maybe two.
-You can expect that without even trying you will start to compare "their way of doing things" to "the way we do it back home".
-Expect to be both enthralled with the beauty and frustrated with the processes around you.

DownWhat does PAHS expect from a volunteer?

A volunteer is expected to show up for work on a regular schedule as agreed upon on arrival. A volunteer will be expected to "pull their weight" since the facility runs on a skeleton crew. The volunteer is expected to pay for their own expenses. A volunteer is expected to leave their place of work better than it was upon their arrival. It is expected that if a volunteer has a new idea which they expect to be implemented then they will be the ones to provide the "elbow grease" and energy to see it through to completion.

PAHS expects that a volunteer is aware that they are in a developing country and not still in their country of origin. It is expected that you will be respectful of the fact that you are in a very poor country that has limited material resources. It is also expected that you respect the local culture as well as the fact that PAHS has been operating for nearly half a century in this culture. Above all it is expected that a volunteer will be respectful of the children and regular staff on campus. It is expected that a volunteer will voice concerns to the appropriate person and not engage in aimless gossip. Finally, it is expected that a volunteer understands they are not here to establish romantic relationships during their time with PAHS.

DownDo volunteers receive compensation or housing?

Volunteers are welcomed to take their meals in our Kitchen. Lodging is also provided for actively contributing volunteers. PAHS can not provide monetary compensation beyond a small stipend if requested.

DownHow long should I stay?

The length of your stay will depend upon what you wish to accomplish during your volunteer experience. Your stay should not be less than 10 days if you wish to accomplish significant tasks.

DownDo I need a visa to enter Honduras?

You will need a visa to enter Honduras if you are a citizen of certain countries. Please check with your nearest Honduras consulate for a list of countries whose citizens need visas when traveling to Honduras.

You do not need a visa to enter Honduras if you are a citizen of the United States of America or a country that is a member of European Union. You will receive permission upon entrance to be in the country for 90 days. After 90 days you will have to leave Central America for at least 72 hours and re-enter if your stay is to be longer than 3 months. Nearest countries you can travel to to meet this stipulation: Belize, Costa Rica.


DownWhy are there so many building projects?

The former buildings were built in the 1960's and were made of lumber. They began to succumb to the tropical mountain lake climate as well as to armies of termites.
The children of the Nutrition Hospital as well as the Homes were in physical danger and needed new facilities to reside in.

DownWhat projects are there?

The Nutrition Hospital is under reconstruction; the new Laundry, Kitchen and Dining Hall are part of this project.
There is also a great need for Administrative offices and the rebuilding of the Outpatient Clinic, and the Older Boys Dorm.

DownWhat other projects are there?

The Vocational School is struggling to meet the demand for classroom space in its Education-for-All program; therefore a new classroom building is urgently needed.
Also needed is a four-plex for single mothers and their children, as well as the rebuilding of the bakery and significant repairs to the Chapel.

DownHow can I donate money for a particular project?

When you make your donation specify that it is for a particular project.
TitleAbout Our Website and Newsletters

DownHow much did PAHS spend on this website?

No money was spent on the creation of this website. It was conceptualized, designed, executed and is currently managed by Dagoberto Fernandez a PAHS staff member in Honduras, who used his free time to build it.
PAHS pays only for the hosting of its website to an independent company and allots Dagoberto work days to upgrade and add new features.

DownWho did the text of this website?

Dagoberto Fernandez conceptualized most of the texting,editing of the final product and additional features have been done by Anita Zelaya-Youngberg.

DownCan I receive any other type of information?

You can request printed material to be sent from our office in Texas. Send request to

DownCan I receive news by mail?

You can send your name and address with a request to be added to the PAHS mailing list to PAHS P.O. Box 888, Keene, TX 76059 or email

DownCan I receive news by Email?

You can request an electronic newsletter by sending a message to

DownHow can I opt-out of the mailing list?

Send a request to PAHS Attention: Diana PO BOX 888, Keene, TX 76059 or

DownIs there any audiovisual information from PAHS?

PAHS has several audiovisual programs. A DVD entitled Through the Years commemorating its 50th Anniversary of the incorporation of PAHS as well as several short Flash programs on CD that illustrate the work PAHS does - which are done by Dagoberto Fernandez- are available. You may request a copy of these to be sent to you. For online material you can check our Video Section.

DownWhy is the PAHS website not updated sometimes?

There are only two individuals who work on this website, and both of them have heavy work loads that are unrelated to the internet. At times it is difficult to carve out the time to update news items on the website. We appreciate our readers patience!