There are about 10,000 kilometers, including an ocean, between Ybyrarovana in Canindeyu, Paraguay and Morogoro in Tanzania. There, Palmira is starting to fulfill her dreams. She is a Paraguayan girl who is an example of perseverance for all of us.
When Palmira was 7, she used to meet with her brother, cousins and friend in hot Ybyrarovana to play "empresita," a role-playing game in which they pretended to be business people, using leaves as money for their transactions. She was dedicated to her studies, waking up at 4am to catch the 4:30am bus that passed her town and took her to school at San Enrique de Osso. Classes started at 7am and ended at 11am, and the trek home ended at 1pm. She went through a few other schools in various cities, determined to get a good education.
In 2009, a visit from a relative brought excellent news: a new high school for girls was opening its doors near the forest reserve Mbaracayu offering a certification program. Without hesitation Palmira and her family went to register, and she was on of the first students to be admitted. She graduated in December 2011, the best of 59 other students, with a GPA of 4.7. She participated in the Forum of Entrepreneurs Paraguay - FEP, achieving third place among the best schools in the country. Looking forward to her future, Palmira decided to look into colleges. An alumnus of the Earth University in Costa Rica spread the news of a full scholarship possibility, and Palmira applied and was accepted, scoring the only space available for Paraguayan students.
Palmira is now in her third year of an Agronomy program at Earth University, with an overall average of 9.3/10 possible. She is currently in Morogoro Tanzania, completing an internship as part of her Earth University coursework. She is also working with the Fundacion Paraguaya office in Tanzania that is replicating the same financially self-sustainable school model, giving professional advice and feedback to improve the same system that helped her to get where she is.
Palmira is an example of the success that a good education and good influences can bring communities that are in need of higher technical and entrepreneurial education. Thanks to your continued support, students like Palmira can continue to unleash their potential for success.
Celebrating its 15th year, Paraguay’s Entrepreneur Forum (FEP in Spanish) has gathered more than 200 young people from across sectors and places of the country. This year’s Forum made especial emphasis at encouraging the youth to use their creativity, talent and energy in benefit of social and environmental change. The event was organized by Fundación Paraguaya in representation of Junior Achievement Paraguay, and took place for four days at the San Francisco self-sustainable Agricultural School in Benjamin Aceval (Chaco region). The hosting school was the first of its kind and has served as a model for the creation of the Mbaracayú Educational Center and many others to follow. Four young girls from the Educational Center took part of the event, which consisted in training gatherings, plenary sessions with national and international speakers, social events and cultural competitions, among many others engaging activities. The girls’ participation attained great recognition, wining first place at the Forum’s sustainability project competition and nocturnal games activities. Their successful participation at the Forum, along other 250 young students, evidenced the Center’s work and commitment to the integral development of its students. This was a great opportunity for the girls to not only show the work carried by the Center’s educational curriculum, but to interact with other young students, to further develop social entrepreneurship skills and, more importantly, to show their full potential and a promising future.
Dalila is young and enthusiastic, and like many other students at the Mbajacayú Educational Center she has the dream to be the first member of her family to attend the university... “My dream is to become a psychologist in order to help other young people like me overcome challenges like I have; I will be the first in my entire family”. We would like to thank our donors for helping students like Dalila unfold their dreams and become true leaders of positive change in their communities.
Dalila realized upon arriving to CEM that her dream could come true only through two secrets: persistence and dedication. In her first year of study living in the Mbaracayú Forest Reserve, Dalila already stood out and was selected as the only member of her class to participate in the Paraguay Entrepreneurs Forum (FEP), a 3-day event organized by Fundación Paraguaya that gathers youth from all over the country to discuss entrepreneurship, career opportunities, and share experiences.
Dalila proudly narrates how this experience to represent her school helped her understand that if she works hard in school, she will be recognized and given the chance to succeed. About her experience at the Mbaracayú Educational Center, she mentioned “I really enjoy all the activities that we do in the school because working in the field allows us to learn real skills and share what we learn with all the visitors that come to the Reserve. My favorite activities are to work at the hotel, and to help out in the kitchen, I love interacting with the guests!”
Please keep on supporting us and help us create the conditions girls like Dalila need to tap their potentials and to become self-confident rural entrepreneurs…
For the third time in the still short life of our dear Mbaracayu Girls School of Environmental Entrepreneurs, it is with great pride and honor that we hereby present our Class of 2013.
Last Friday December 13th, 2013, 35 girls will say "mission accomplished!" and graduate with many dreams and hopes for a brilliant future, the future of prosperity that they have been preparing for during their 3 years at the school.
The girls will receive a Technical High School Diploma in Environmental Sciences, and from there, some will take jobs, others will pursue further studies, while still others will do both!
The generous contributions collected on the GlobalGiving site made this milestone for our school and for our graduates possible. Donations allow us to continue to invest in the improvement of the quality of the education provided at the Mbaracayu Girls School, as well as in its school-bases enterprises that make the school sustainable and also provide relevant training opportunities for the girls.
In closing, we invite you to join us in celebrating this beautiful group of girl entrepreneurs, youth of today, future leaders and change agents of tomorrow. They are the change we want to see in our beloved nation!
As part of the practical curriculum of the all-girls Mbaracayú Educational Center, second-year students conduct different workshops and lectures on Environmental Education for other schools and educational institutions in the Mbaracayú Biosphere Reserve and its surroundings. Within the program “Community Outreach” and as part of the course “Environmental Education”, the girls attempt to raise awareness and teach younger members of their community about water conservation and other subjects related to the environment. They have already visited schools in the Yrybucua District of the department of San Pedro, as well as educational institutions in Curuguaty. For the remainder of the school year, they are planning to visit schools and high schools in the Brítez Cue and Villa Ygatimí communities. Rosica Roa, a second year student, believes that these activities help students like herself learn how to speak in public while increasing their confidence and developing leadership skills. Moreover, Rosica thinks this is a great way to give back to the community by sharing what is learned at the Mbaracayú Educational Center.
Thank you to our friends at GlobalGiving for their continued support to the girls and the Mbaracayú Educational Center!
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