Kids without complete families, without anything approaching a full-time job among anyone in their household, without anyone with a high school education to mentor them, fill the neighborhoods of the poor areas of cities, towns and settlements throughout the country. The rules that middle-class people learn, that one does things right and expects to be rewarded for working hard, being honest and cooperating with one's friends and peers, just does not work for poor people. There are not enough schools, not enough teachers, and not enough lunches to ensure that all the children can participate actively in a creative, learning environment in a school, and learn what is supposed to be learnt in school. The presence of God or any spiritual values can be so invisible to people in these neighborhoods, where despair reigns over everything else.
|Children of Nicaragua Christian School are provided classes, books, supplies, and uniforms as donations. Photo Brenda McCrary.|
|Children of Nicaragua Christian School wear uniforms to promote egalitarian values, so that no child be ashamed of not wearing the latest fashion. Photo Brenda McCrary.|
The mayor of Leon, Transito Tellez, aided these individuals in choosing an underserved neighborhood in which to develop their project, on the grounds of a former cotton farm which had lain fallow for decades and now was being developed as new housing for people of very limited means. The local schools were unable to keep up with the rapid increase in demand for school placements, and Mayor Tellez prudently recommended to these folks a project in the neighborhood now called, Barrio Ruben Dario. In 2006, land was chosen for a new, private school directed toward the impoverished residents of this neighborhood, and groundbreaking for the first buildings began.
|Parents are deeply involved in the education of their children at Nicaragua Christian School, even when the parents may not be able to read themselves. Photo Brenda McCrary.|
The school chooses its students on the basis of need, precisely the opposite of what happens at any of the other schools in Nicaragua. This is because there are folks in the US who are interested in sacrificing a small part of their monthly income to sponsor a child to attend the Nicaragua Christian School. Special donations from many groups and individuals have provided for a spacious auditorium, which provides space for parents and teachers to meet, community gatherings to be held, and even church services every Sunday. The school property is integrated into the lives of the students and their parents, and on any day, one can expect to see parents cutting grass, cleaning spaces, and providing other kinds of help to make the school run well. Many of the parents and their children attend church services and community activities on the school grounds regularly.
|The children of Nicaragua Christian School learn cultural, spiritual and educational values with highly qualified staff. Photo Brenda McCrary.|
|The children of Nicaragua Christian School learn in a loving environment. Photo Brenda McCrary.|
|Students and parents gather for an assembly in the new auditorium at Nicaragua Christian School. Photo Brenda McCrary.|
FUNDECI/GAIA supports the Nicaragua Christian School, because we recognize its great vision in making a difference among the people who need it most in Nicaragua. Any visitor to the school will note the effects of this project on the neighborhood. Hope and faith are given space in the lives of people who face discouragement daily. It is no surprise that many important people in Nicaragua also recognize the special success that this school has had on the lives of many people and the fabric of their community.
|Staff and board members of the Nicaragua Christian School visiting with members of the Nicaraguan National Assembly, Gladys Baez and Agustin Jarquin Anaya. Photo Jeffrey McCrary.|
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