There was, as you would expect, a lot of excitement the day of the Graduation Ceremony for “The Education Centre” in Chimeltenango. Six boys and girls had completed their primary education and have now left this incredible school. Buses transported the children and their families from the town centre to a school hall that had been lent to them as there would not have been room for everyone in the school.
We sang several songs worshipping God and thanking Him for giving them a chance to have an education. Now the children are able to dream of one day becoming a teacher, policeman or doctor maybe, just like many children all over the world.
The children in Guatemala love going to school and count the days during the holidays until they will return. They know they will then be given a nutritious breakfast on arrival and with the naturally enquiring brains of children, be able to learn so their futures will not be like that of many generations before them. More than that though they learn about the God who loves them and cares about them deeply despite their circumstances.
A boy who attends the Education Centre but in the holidays goes back to the dump to work on the rubbish dump.
A nearby Children’s home for severely abused girls started the school five years ago by going to the dump on Saturday afternoon’s to initially teach 14 children reading, writing and arithmetic in a shack on the side of the dump. There are now 115 children registered for the school in 2016.
Pastor Luis giving the children a talk at the Education Centre.
At most schools in Guatemala the parents have to provide their children with uniforms, exercise books, pens and pencils. Something impossible for these families to achieve when they are only just scraping a “living” from the dump. At this school the subscription is free, all materials are provided, and the “uniform” is a donated t-shirt. The parents have realized this is the only way their family can climb out of the poverty trap and are willing to allow their children to attend the school.
Many prizes were given out on their Graduation Day. There were smiles, applause, photos and a hearty meal for all when it was over.
These children really love their school and need it so desperately. For the 6 children who have left this primary school we are hoping there will be funds for them to complete their education at senior school, otherwise they will be spending their entire days at the dump again. For the 115 who are registered this year at the “Education Centre” we pray that God will continue to prompt people to support it. The children all did really well in 2015 and truly need our help to keep going in 2016. Their God given talent will enable them to improve and change, not just their lives, but those of others too! Please consider if you could be a part of enabling this life changing school to continue