Project Esperanza

Project Esperanza is a non-profit organization that began as and remains a Virginia Tech student organization. Project Esperanza serves to connect the Blacksburg, Virginia community and the Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic community through service. Our programs are designed to work toward breaking the cycle of poverty present among the lower social classes in these two communities, as well toward breaking the cycle of apathy present among the upper classes.
Apr 22, 2015

Ups and Downs

The main soccer field in Puerto Plata called El Polideportivo was shut down for months as it was being rennovated and prepared for professional soccer to begin. We returned and played on the field for the first time since the rennovation began last Sunday. We were so glad to be back! And even better news, we won both our games!

 

During the months that the field was being rennovated, we traveled to Munoz and Montellano on Sundays to play. Munoz  beat us every time, and the kids kept wanting to return. Montellano beat us sometimes and we beat them. But when the field opened up, we played the local Puerto Plata team as well as a tema who came from Sosua. Everyone is looking forward to the summer when there will be three practices a week. One Sunday we even went to Los Manguitos and played with a group of volunteers who were here for their Spring Break week. We were unsure as to how to divided the teams so we put colorful shirts on one team and white shirts on the other. It ended up being a very fair match in goals and numbers of team members.

 

Thank you for your support.

The Project Esperanza Team

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Mar 24, 2015

Trucking Along

painting front of school
painting front of school

This month we have raised almost $3,000 toward the purchase of the school! Northeastern University volunteers painted the front of the building over their spring break with the organization's logo, school name, and some other awesome phrases. We were able to construct an office and the kitchen is under construction now. We also got plumbing into the building which was quite an ordeal hauling water from neighbors for the bathroom until then!

 

Other great news is that a volunteer group coming this summer is looking into fundraising to build the rest of the classroom dividers. The kitchen construction has been supported by a Rotary club in Canada, as well as funds to purchase many books for our school library! The building's current owner sold us his old filing cabinet, which is a wonderful addition to the office! We are trucking along... and it's all thanks to YOU! 

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Mar 24, 2015

New Students

clay and magnifying glasses in pre-school!
clay and magnifying glasses in pre-school!

Parents in a neighborhood in town called Los Dominguez continually solicited help in sending their kids to school as many were turned away from the public school in the neighborhood and were therefore not in school. One girl came consistently to camp last summer so I began asking camp counselors for help with her transportation money to go to and from school. After a few months, I was finally successful. But the parents kept on coming. I told them how long it took to get one student's transportation covered and I did not have hope with more. 

 

Then we did some math and figured out that with the transportation spent already sending two boys home boys and this other girl via motorcycle to school each morning, that could go toward sending a van which would carry many more kids to school. So I began telling parents that we could send a guagua (van) if each gave 100 pesos per child, per week, excluding the three who were already going on moto. They all willingly agreed and in January, Los Dominguez kids began piling 30 into the van to travel across town to our school in Munoz each morning. Parents gave quite consistently until the past week or two. They must have found out that some parents pay less often than others so those who were giving more consistendly dropped back. However, we did some other fundraising for this specifically on the side and it has not been much of a problem. But we had to add a new teacher to be able to handle all of the new students! We also just had UCF spring break volunteers who helped build a roof for more classroom space in the back of the building. Now we are just working on putting and end to the horrific weak electricity that comes in surges and explodes light builbs.

 

 

Thank you so much for your support. 

roof for more classroom space
roof for more classroom space
trash can construction
trash can construction

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