Members of the youth group help pour cement blocks
The Youth Support Program in Antigua provides academic and emotional support for 796 youth, helping to ensure that they reach their goal of graduating from high school. The program also plays a crucial role in achieving Common Hope’s long-term goals that youth develop critical thinking skills and possess the confidence, compassion, and organizational skills that will enable them to be multipliers of our work and agents of change in their communities.
Katie, the Youth Leadership Program Facilitator, says, “The youth who participate in our programs learn to build trust and strong bonds and want to support each other.”
Recently, the youth in Antigua have demonstrated how they are putting the skills they’ve learned into action to help their peers who are in need.
Lending a helping hammer
Last month, a member of the youth group and her family had to suddenly move out of their home and they were left with nowhere to go. When the other kids in the program learned about the family’s situation, they decided to help the family build a new place to call home. As a group, they began working sweat equity hours that will count towards the construction of the family’s new home.
Ensuring a friend stays in school
In December, a group of Common Hope students found out that a friend, who is not affiliated with Common Hope but who participates in some of our youth activities, was not going to be able to continue studying. The young girl’s father had abandoned the family and her mother didn’t have enough money to continue paying her school fees.
The group decided to spend their December holiday doing fundraising activities in the community to help raise money for their friend. When they returned from vacation in January, the youth group invited the mother and daughter to come to Common Hope where they presented their friend’s mom with the funds they had raised.
It was a beautiful representation of how the youth at Common Hope understand the importance of education and want to ensure that their friends also continue studying.
What you make possible
Poor living conditions, domestic violence, and hunger are just a few of the tremendous obstacles that the youth of Guatemala face on a daily basis that can prevent them from receiving an education.
The Youth Support Program is there to help our students, along with youth from the broader community, overcome these obstacles standing in their way. Stories like these serve as great examples of how the confidence, compassion, and skills that the youth have built inside our walls are extending outward. Not only are they receiving support, but they are also multiplying this support in their own communities, helping to build hope for a better future.
Your generous gifts are what make critical programs like the Youth Support Program possible. Thank you for supporting nearly 800 students who participate in this program.
What similarities and/or differences do you see between the youth of Guatemala and young people around the world? Have you heard other stories of young people making a difference by helping their peers in need? Would you like to see us publish more stories about our youth group?
Working hard to help build a new home for a friend