It’s been a few weeks since my last update on the school we’re supporting in the community of El Triunfo in Guatemala. During Easter week I had the opportunity to visit the country. Upon my eventual landing (another whole story involving a flight delay and a very interesting flight into Guatemala City), I was immediately reminded by how seriously the country takes this holiday. On a Wednesday afternoon, traffic in the city was lighter than usual and the offices I needed to visit before heading out of the city were either closed for the week or would be closing shortly.
Fortunately the next day in El Triunfo, I was able to meet with the new COCODE (the community’s economic development council) who took on their new role on March 10. It was a good opportunity to meet with the people, including Santiago, the president, who would be leading the activities on the school for the next two years and to discuss our tasks and responsibilities for the project, including the reporting and receipting of the funds we send them. Unfortunately there weren’t any classes due to the Easter break but I did meet several teachers and students on the streets in the town of Sololá during the trip over the next few days.
The COCODE had one piece of disappointing news for me. A decision was made to cancel the grade 10 class this year due to low enrollment – only two students had registered for classes. But enrollment in the grade 7 class had remained at 32, which is the largest class we’ve ever had in the school. One of the goals for the year will be to ensure that these students continue into grade 8 and that an equally large grade 7 class comes to the school in 2016. Another goal for the year is to connect the school’s computer lab to the Internet. This week a technician is going to take a look at the lab to evaluate what would be needed to connect it to the Internet and hopefully provide an accurate budget for the project.
Your support of the school is greatly appreciated by the students, teachers and the community in El Triunfo. Each month we send funds to the school to pay the salaries of the teachers in both the middle and high schools. You can donate online here. (Important: under “You can select to apply your donation to a specific fund set up by this charity,” please select “El Triunfo School Project.”)
You can also mail a cheque payable to Casa Pueblito (please note this is a new address) :
107A 2238 Dundas St. W
Toronto, ON M6R 3A9
ATTN: El Triunfo School Project
On another note, I’m pleased to let you know that my annual driveway sale for Guatemala is back for the fifth time! On June 6, you’ll have a chance to pick up items from Asociacion Maya, fairly traded coffee and jewelry. Details are here. I hope to see you there!