The Best Form of Help

Wed, Oct 6, 2010

General, International, Vocational

The Best Form of Help

Israel (pictured here in the white longsleeved shirt) is an 11-year-old who dreams of becoming a computer engineer.

He is being sponsored now, thanks to the decision to donate around $230 per year over the next five years, so that he will be able to finish secondary school and have a shot at higher education leading to a professional career.

That is, of course, if someone down the road will be generous enough to sponsor the $1210 per year for his university studies.

The boys meet Israel, who is a top student at Elba Zamora Elementary

We visited Israel at his school and learned that he is the youngest of six children, and his father died, which means that his mother has to struggle even more to help his family get by.  Like most people here, he lives in abject poverty.

We very much enjoyed meeting Israel and we wish him all the courage, fortitude and luck in the world.  May he someday become a computer engineer—engineering positive change in his community and country!

A class about to begin at San Ignacio Elementary outside of Granada

It was an eye-opening experience to see his school, Elba Zamora, and another one like it, San Ignacio, and observe the surrounding barrio with its corrugated tin or scrap wood shacks housing people who have no running water—people who get by on $1.50 or less per day.  The primary school gives the kids the reassurance of a basic hot lunch of gallo pinto (red beans with rice).  The nonprofit educational organization La Esperanza Granada brings volunteers to assist Nicaraguan teachers whose salaries could not be possible without the generous donations of people overseas.

A relatively new community has taken root in the shadow of the Mombacho volcano

The neighborhood around San Ignacio Elementary is only a year and a half old, with shacks on bits of land that were parceled out to homeless families. I did not even want to imagine those families’ harsh conditions prior to settling in this barrio.

But meeting Israel today gave us great enthusiasm and hope for this region and for these people.  Through educational opportunities and fruitful networking over the coming several years in Granada, this young man might change his family’s trajectory.  He seems like a serene, thoughtful person, but the clever spark in his eyes communicates a great ambition to learn and experience the world.  We look forward to updates about Israel’s successes between now and 2016.

One Response to “The Best Form of Help”

  1. Julio Says:

    Hey, just wanted to say that i really like your unschooling concept. I personally spend a lot of time in Granada and really see all the benefits you’re talking about. You especially notice them when you come back to the states. Anyway, i do appreciate this entry, and wanted to include a link to a few non profits in Nicaragua (Granada) that people can read about and maybe volunteer at. Some are educational, some are not.



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