Michigan to Matamoros: Man builds orphanage

Nestled on a dusty plain just outside of Matamoros is "Ciudad de los Nios" or the City of Children.

More than 40 children call the six-building complex home, thanks to one man.

I know I would build an orphanage, I just didn TMt know when and I didn TMt know where, John Shinsky told Action 4 News.

A Michigan native, Shinsky heard his calling on a business trip to Brownsville.

He heard about an orphanage south of border, which needed a lot of help.

"I asked them what can I do to help... I thought they were going to say food and clothing and they say ~we need a new orphanage, TM he said. I knew at that time that my commitment 30 years ago had just been answered."

That commitment stemmed from Shinsky's childhood.

When he was eight, his father died of a heart attack and his mother gave him up and put him in an orphanage.

"As a child I never knew the sacrifice she made, I was more concerned with myself," he added.

As he grew up he made a promise to help kids in his same situation.

Many years later, at Ciudad de los Nios, he feels he has fulfilled his promise.

"That TMs exactly what this orphanage is for, to give children a chance to get out of poverty and to be able to recognize their values and abilities. he said.

Shinsky's goal is to see the orphanage double in size to 12 buildings, and to be the home for 140 kids.

He is confident they will follow his lead, and one day they will also give back to their community.

I see myself in every one of these children, he said. "All I have to do is look in their eyes and I know every moment was worth it, whether it was good or bad, or something indifferent."To donate to Shinsky TMs orphanage, simply visit the Ciudad de los Nios website here.