The Hilda Rothschild Foundation's EDUCAMBIO program provides the opportunity for growth, nutrition, and development in well-lit, welcoming classrooms for children whose mothers work as market vendors and other low income activities. Some of these children are used to sleeping on the streets with their homeless mothers and get their only meal at school.
In the EDUCAMBIO classroom, children ages zero to six learn through play with specialized materials, surrounded by books, under the guidance of trained educators. This is in stark contrast to those children shown in these photographs who spend endless hours in unhygienic, often unsafe environments, or under the market stalls.
Thanks to the support received through donors like yourselves, we are able to provide a brighter future for these children. We are amazed at the change that take place in their appearance and their attitudes after a few months in the program. Many mothers offer testimony that their child's behavior at home changes radically once they they join EDUCAMBIO!
The Hilda Rothschild Foundation (HRF) reinvigorates its EDUCAMBIO program in 2014 with an additional training program to prepare women as caregivers. EDUCAMBIO provides women with the skills and knowledge needed to guide infants and and pre-schoolers in education centers associated with municipal markets in downtown San Salvador. Instead of growing up in unsavory conditions around their mothers who are busy at their stalls selling food, vegetables, and other products, these children benefit from a positive learning environment established by the Foundation. HRF will continue its work in the Mercado Central and Sagrado Corazon markets, adding the Tinetti and San Jacinto markets, bnefitting 300 additional children.
WHO ARE THE CHILDREN ATTENDING EDUCAMBIO?
Here are some of their stories as reported by mother educators and program coordinators:
"Jaime just turned seven, his father was killed last December(2012), a month later, his mother was murdered in front of him and his four siblings. The maternal grandmother steps in to care for the children, but can't go out to sell at her stand in the market because Jaime screams and cries when she leaves." She eventually finds out about our program, and brings him to the center.
"Ana Maria is only four, born to 15 and 16 years old parents. She has been tossed around like a ping pong ball between grandmothers after each fight between the parents, who after all, are themselves adolescents. The father brings in a small income, but disappears into gang violence. The mother in despair, drops the child off at the paternal grandmother who brings Ana to the EDUCAMBIO program."
"Armando, six, sleeps with his homeless mother and sister on sidewalks".
THE EDUCAMBIO program brings relief to families dealing with desperate situations. Some comments made by the educators about changes they see in the children after a few months in the program: "He was shy and withdrawn but is beginning to socialize and seek out friendships";
"She was aggressive, breaking everything in sight to draw attention, but is finding ways to gain some self-control; the grandmother is grateful reporting the changes she sees at home".
"He had such a sad looks in his eyes; but is presently coming out of his shell; he even looks physically better."
"He refused to obey, but is now settling into a normal development despite the emotional turmoil at home".
One of the educators says, "it's all about the love they receive from us all", and finding a safe environment where they can develop.
EDUCAMBIO IS about love. It is also about Respect for the Child, developing Trust, bringing Hope, and about a child being accepted for he or she is. EDUCAMBIO is about learning through playing, through discovery, and experimentation. EDUCAMBIO is about freedom with boundaries.
We are training mother educators to guide chidren in this development in both Honduras and El Salvador.