The first CAPTA course for the year takes off with 23 women in search of new opportunities. The recruitment for this course was not easy; the women we found interested in the course faced several obstacles and were not sure they could participate. With the start of the school year, most of the women were preparing their children for school and did not have the means to purchase school materials and uniforms. This is a troubling situation for these women, who often want to take advantage of opportunities from organizations like Fundacion Calicanto but can’t stop working to provide for their families. Our CAPTA coordinator Nefthaly Montenegro had the excellent idea of asking for community donations in the form of school materials, books, and uniforms; the results were amazing! Different members of the community we serve, came into our offices and dropped off backpacks, shoes, uniforms, pens and pencils, and anything you can imagine a child could use in school. Each woman received enough donations to cover their expenses for their children’s school year!
This year, CAPTA also counts with the support of a prestigious local dental clinic, owned by Dr. Richard Ford, who has pledged to provide “perfect smiles” to three girls from each course. Dr. Ford will provide at no cost, all treatments and surgical necessities to improve dental hygiene and cosmetic appearance. This important alliance is evidence that changes and opportunities can come from several avenues and it proves that if different sectors join and cooperate, we can provide much more than we could alone.
We have started CAPTA this year with new supporters, who like you believe in the program and the opportunities it creates. Fundacion Calicanto’s President Hildegard Vasquez says, “When you change the life of a woman, you change her family, her community, and the country;” I want you to know that you are part of this process.
Can you imagine the happiness Domaira felt when she heard that you had sponsored her education?
We gave Domaira the great news that her scholarship had been paid for by a Global Giving donor and she was so thrilled that her eyes began to water. Since she graduated CAPTA, she has been working as a housekeeper in a hotel near her home and doing very well for herself. She has established several goals, including completing her education; so it came as a shock to her to hear that a friend of Fundacion Calicanto would sponsor her.
Domaira studied in a remote area in Panama called Darien and only reached the second grade. She tried to contact the small school where she studied but they could not locate any records for her. Her family has no knowledge of where this documentation could be and without it, she cannot enroll in school. Domaira was very disappointed to learn that this would become another challenge for her but we are keeping her motivated and helping her find other alternatives. She is now contacting the Ministry of Education to see if they can help her find the documentation she needs.
Unfortunately, not all stories can always be great stories. Fundacion Calicanto is helping Domaira as much as possible to guide her in the right direction and we are searching for schools that will allow her to enroll without transcripts. We are considering, having her start from first grade since this search has not lead us to any documentation that will prove she studied at all.
As a donor and a person clearly interested in supporting this young girl complete her education, I ask you to be a little more patient. We are searching all possible avenues to enroll Domaira in school but it may be another month until we get any clear response from the Ministry of Education.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us through our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/fundacioncalicanto.org
2012 marked 15 years of successful community work with Fundacion Calicanto. Our end of year celebration for these 15 years was shared with volunteers, beneficiaries and personnel who all shared with us one night of food, prizes and music!
The end of year celebration counted with over 70 guests including the first CAPTA participants who are now sharing stories about their jobs and the houses they are buying. ENLACES parents shared stories about their children growth in the program. And the ENLACES children sneaked in to celebrate too!
Fundacion Calicanto’s president Hildegard Vasquez thanked everyone present and gave away appreciation tokens to our volunteers and partners.
We have big goals for 2013! We want to make the CONEXION project grow and reach more individuals.
For example we will now offer a school for parents so that ENLACES parents also get the training and support they need to escape poverty. We will offer them parent training, conflict management, communication skills, English and basic computer courses.
We are looking forward to this project and will be in touch with all the fun updates and accomplishments!
We thank you for your support and ask that you keep contributing so that you can help us make all this possible.
Happy New Year!!