During our world bicycle tour we still meet people every day who wish us well, give us a refreshing drink or ask us if we are okay. That’s why we like paying it forward.
We enjoyed the cooler conditions at Lake Atitlán, but as soon as we leave the mountains and head to the border of El Salvador the temperature and humidity are sky high again. We were blessed to have one homestay in Guatemala when we needed it badly. Without notice, the family of 12 prepared some food and drinks for us and we had a safe place to sleep. For all this generosity we supported Niños de Guatemala in Ciudad Vieja, a little town near to Antigua.
The Good Hotel
Niños de Guatemala is founded by “the Good Hotel”. A social hotel which gives its profits to 2 primary and 1 secondary school. They also train students to work in hospitality through their acclaimed Good Training Program, an eduction of 1 year.
A better future
Guatemala has the lowest ranking regarding education world wide. Niños de Guatemala offers a chance for a better future to 530 children. They provide education to underprivileged children. Besides education they also provide the children with a daily meal, psychological support, and follow-up from their social work department. This short video gives a good impression of what the schools do.
A typical school day start at 7:30 am and ends at 1:15 pm. In November the students are home schooled and in December they are having holidays. Totally different compared to the Dutch educational system.
Breakfast includes eggs, beans, tortillas, sausages and Incaparina (a nutritious and fortified drink formulated by the National Institute of Nutrition). Each mom cooks twice a month and cleans the building. The operational budget for this is € 3 a day. The Incaparina costs € 1,000 a month. There isn’t enough budget to provide lunch.
Niños de Guatemala exists for 15 years. The results are impressive. 90% of the students start secondary school. Multi bilingual education is their aim.
We visited the Escuela Urbana Mixta Nuestro Futuro, one of the primary schools on June 21. Unfortunately we could not meet the students because the school was closed because of a short holiday. We met Fito, the executive director, and his team of teachers and volunteers. They were busy painting the school building.
We now have a very special connection with one of the students. Through our foundation we offered a full sponsorship (Champion program) to Samanta for 1 year. She just celebrated her 9th birthday and wants to become an accountant. She likes to sing and her favorite superhero is Wonder Woman. By email we stay in touch with her and keep track of her life and progress at school.
We hope we can continue our support next year. If you can spare some money and would like to help us helping Samanta, please donate to our foundation: https://www.xplorid.today/donation
Help is really needed and a sponsorship makes a huge difference to a child. This video shows the impact. You can also support Niños de Guatemala directly through this link. Besides the Champion program there are several other types of sponsorships. Currently there are 530 children in the schools, but there are still around 200 children waiting for sponsors. Fito also told us about 30 computers in the computer lab which are old and need to be replaced.